The bond between a mother and child is both universal, and intricately specific. We may count our birth mothers as our best friends, or have a more distant relationship. We may have found maternal influences along the journey of our lives, outside our original home. On a grander scale, we are all held within the nurturing and lifegiving mother nature. Whatever concept of motherhood holds true for you, this day is a chance to reflect and celebrate the influence of ‘the mother’ in our lives.
We officially launched AïANA two weeks before my daughter’s due date, so the journey of this nascent company will forever be entwined with the uncharted territory of bringing a new life into the world; nurturing, hoping, dreaming of future boundless possibilities. I am continually grateful for my naivety towards the craziness that looking after an actual, real live baby would bring; without that, I may have let fear dissuade me from committing to this venture.
Truthfully, over the preceding years Sue and I shared late-night planning discussions, sketched furiously our wild and wacky ideas, and navigated the not-so-fun parts of registration, vetting suppliers, and reading the fine print, we not only nurtured our fledgling business, but also became an integral part of each other's support systems. Now, we inspect every new piece like proud parents, carefully wrapping them up and sending them off into the world to be embraced by their new owners.
For my own child, I hope that she will have the opportunity to pursue her dreams in the same way I have, whatever they may be and however crazy they may sound to those that just don’t ‘get it’. I am proud to be a tiny part of the new paradigm for design processes that aim to leave a better future for mother earth than how we’ve inherited it. I look at my hands and see the jewellery I wear every day; a ring from my mother, a ring from my father, my vintage wedding ring - all of which encompass stories of lives and places and feelings that cannot be summed up in words. I look forward to passing these down alongside my own contributions, made just for me, safe in the knowledge that they will last as long as they are held dear.
I worked out the other day that my parents were around my age when they immigrated to Australia, seeking better opportunities for me and my brother. When this reality hit, it made me wonder whether I could make such a life changing decision. I’m grateful for the sacrifices that they made, especially my mum who went from having friends and family to help with raising the kids to working full-time starting a new business and looking after her children in a foreign country. We were never without but we also grew up in the knowledge of our hardworking and entrepreneurial parents.
This has probably coloured my long held desire to be my own boss and start my own “something”. Thankfully, I didn’t know what I didn’t know about starting your own business: the realities of mundane and yet fundamental things such as budgeting, cash-flow and taxes - the very things that my mum handled with such competence, as opposed to my hectic ways.
Even though my parents have retired, they are busy every day. Mum is always doing something, always challenging herself, especially in the kitchen - for which I’m a willing guinea pig of her food experiments (they’re 99.9% a success). In comparison, I feel very lazy. This in turn is motivating me to keep challenging myself and us, even if mistakes are made, so that AïANA is always moving forward.
Happy Mother's Day everyone! Love, AïANA x