We had the good fortune of connecting with Nicole Bowman and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Nicole, how has your background shaped the person you are today?
I used to brag about being born in Germany because it felt like it added something interesting to my identity but I have no memory of living there– with the exception of finding a penny in the snow and visiting a castle with peacocks– and as I entered adulthood I realized I didn’t need to add anything to my identity to be interesting. I was raised in Huntington Beach and enjoyed the beach lifestyle. I enjoyed the abundance of sunshine, bare feet, and the smell of sunscreen. The idyllic location was a juxtaposed to the covertly dark home-life. My parents were very young when I entered their world, and they had their own traumas left unprocessed, which combined makes for a challenging childhood– for them and me. Eventually, I was given a buddy, a little sister, and I fiercely attempted to protect and shield her from the secrets of our family. My dad is a narcissistic addict. My mom is a survivor. I am finally acknowledging, accepting, and healing from the litany of small and big abuses.
As I said, I no longer lead with the my birth place as an identifier, or as a note of interest because I have stepped out of the shadow of a familial identity and stepped into my own. I am building a brand– myself– that evokes women/mothers to be comfortable in their own light, doing their own thing, listening to their own voice. I am breaking the cycle of abuse. I am breaking the cycle of negative self-talk. I am breaking the cycle of unfair expectations and hypocrisy. Today, I am thankful that I have such a clear representation of who I don’t want to be, which guides me in staying the course of who I am today: an amazing human, woman, wife, and mom that appreciates that the moments of life are neither black or white but a beautiful shade of gray.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I am a self proclaimed renaissance woman because I was once a dog groomer, hair stylist, bank manager and English teacher. Today I am a stay-at-home-mother, writer, and content creator. What does that look like? What does that mean? Honestly, I am still answering those questions with the precious free minutes I get in a day. But I have come to some conclusions. I am a mother… all the time. Legitimately, there is not a single second off-duty and if you think you are off the clock, one of the kids is surely going to remind you there is no such thing. I make this point because moms (and dads) that have a budding or booming career are over-worked and under-recognized.
So, where I am at professionally depends on where the value of a profession is placed or what you define as successful. I am writing with regularity, facing rejections and wins. I write prose, which centers around my motherhood. I write verse that cathartically exposes the traumas and healings of my childhood/adolescence. There are challenges, every damn day but what I have learned along the way is a little bit is enough and choosing to be happy is one of the most powerful things we can do, which is what birthed my brand: All the Things Motherish. I wanted to, or perhaps needed to, create a brand that encompassed all aspects of myself because I didn’t see brands that promoted being more than a mom. Or a brand that truly championed for moms to be unapologetically themselves, even if it looks different than me. I have held space prior to COVID for moms to come together and share a story about their motherhood and I look forward to hosting another event. I’m also excited to promote and host a Moms (Dads too) Club Night; think about all the swagger of going out before kids but you get to start your night at 6:00PM and end promptly at 11:00PM because we all know kids don’t sleep in just because you went to bed late.
I am happy to watch my brand grow and change with me— it’s exciting. My new endeavors (merchandise coming) is a the reminder I needed that I am all the things, motherhood didn’t eradicate who I was before being a mom. So, All the Things Motherish, showcases my life as an authentic, vulnerable, and unapologetic brand that inspires and applauds other moms for living their most authentic life with no apologies to pass out.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
The pandemic has done its best at thwarting fun but it hasn’t won– yet. Luckily, living in Monrovia I am close to some amazing hiking trails and I think starting any visit exploring the local nature is the best way to jump start fun. My favorite trail is Mt. Wilson; it’s a vicious incline with breathtaking views and dependent on how much time you want to dedicate to elevating your heart rate and gaining elevation you can quickly forget you are 30 minutes from DTLA.
For me, nothing beats a cold craft beer in celebration of a successful hike. Luckily, we are surrounded by great breweries, like Pacific Plate Brewing Company and Hop Secret Brewing Company both located in Monrovia. Recently, we put Ogopogo Brewing into our rotation, brining the kids along with their Colorama play dough kits, which gives us time to sip on a cold beer and them time to play.
Needing a day of rest after a grueling hike, I would head to the beach. I’m partial to Huntington Beach because that is where I grew up but I’m equidistant to a lot of fantastic beaches. In fact, I think nothing beats eating a great meal while your toes are in the sand, so I would book a table at Back on the Beach Cafe in Santa Monica.
Despite being a mom to three kids I would relish in a fun night out, which looks very different these days but I am always on a mission to find any semblance of live music with a cocktail and tasty food. Maestro in Pasadena offers music, amazing cocktails and a lamb dish that blows my mind.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
Without question every step, whether successful or a failure, has been in tandem and supported by my husband. He is the best human I know, my loudest fan, and an amazing cook and baker.
Other: Clubhouse @nicolebowman