Original article by Brand Ambassador Brittany Tran: Adventure Scout
I am a 29-year-old, work-from-home (and everything in-between) mother to one beautiful and vivacious daughter. It is now June and Gemini season, and I have another five days to enjoy my glorious 20s. That’s right. I am turning 30 people! You’d imagined I would say something like, “Ah, to be 20 again…,” or “The 20s were the best years of my life.”… and they really were! But, I am so looking forward to being in my 30s!
Tales from my early 20s are for another post, but the highlight of that era was when I had turned 25 and learned that I was pregnant with my daughter, Scout. You see, motherhood kind of came unexpectedly for me. But somehow, motherhood instincts kicked in and I just felt ready. I also had this intuition that I’d have a girl. Fast-forward to four years later, I am now a mother to a beautiful 3.5-year-old daughter!
Life works in so many mysterious ways and I wouldn’t have it any other way! Being a mother has been the proudest, most fulfilling role I’ve ever had to play my entire life. It gave me incredible instinctive qualities and strengthened the bond I have with my own mother whom I’m so grateful for.
“But how does one find independence as a Mother?”
When you’re young and doing things only for yourself, independence comes a little easier. Some mistake this as loneliness and waste so much time filling in that therapeutic void. As mothers, we spend so much time doing things for others that finding alone time is hard to come by. Often times as women, we will prioritize our family but at the expense of our own inner peace and individual sense of freedom. Being a mother equips us with self-sufficiency but what about those moments of self-reflection we need for ourselves?
For me there’s biking. During my early 20s, I was living down an alley in the middle of Ho Chi Minh City and had to bike every day to work. It was at the age of 21 when I packed a few articles of clothing, a few hundred dollars, and literally moved across the globe to my birthplace, Vietnam. For those who have not been, Vietnam is a country filled with motorbikes and bicycles. More so than any other country in the world. The most convenient route of transportation was being on two wheels. I remember trying to tackle this tricky turning point in the road (a roundabout) but I was completely enveloped in the chaos of whirring bikes and the occasional human body. It took me about 20 minutes just to get on the other side of the road! To this day, I have these moments of memory throwbacks of the adventures on a bike and it’s just incredible. Now, whenever I have a hankering to relive those memories and to bask in the connectedness and freedom of being outdoors… I ride my bike. Though the sounds are now less frantic here in California (the dust is also more settling and the people are less likely to stare) the feelings are definitely there. It’s in those when I feel most independent and free.
Finding our own inner peace, freedom and independence is important. It reunites us to our simplest selves. I think sometimes as mothers, we feel guilty about doing things when it’s just for ourselves. However, developing and strengthening ourselves as individuals only makes us better as partners and mothers.
As I am thinking about my future as both a career driven woman and a mother, I realize I cannot lose those parts that make me – me. I don’t think any woman should have to.
Whenever the time permits, riding my bike is almost therapy for the frenetic life as a self-employed mother like myself. There are other activities such as reading, finding fresh flowers, and cooking that gives me peace but nothing beats the nostalgia I feel when I am on my bike. You can say that I ride to relive my early 20s, a time when I was living across 2-3 continents. I am excited to start this new chapter of turning 30, being a mom to an almost-preschooler, and riding my bike down the street to pick up a baguette and coffee for myself or for my family. The important reminder is to carve out time to spend those few moments alone. When I get home, I will be greeted with crummy grins and buttery fingers from a little toddler and a supportive man. That makes it all worth it.
Independence can be as simple as a 15-20 minute bike ride by yourself…with a friend… or a significant other! It’s about letting your hair hang loose and opening yourself to some fresh air.
I hope you find your independence doing whatever it is you love doing because it’s important and you are important.
Check out the original article and more photos over at Brittany and Scout’s blog Adventure Scout
Our Tiny Unit, as we often refer to ourselves consists of Papa (Allen), Mama (Brittany), and our little girl, Adventure Scout. Like any unit or team, we love to do things together whether it’s an adventure in the mountains, scrambling in the desert, or riding our bikes at the beach! Just like any 3 yr old, she’s always trying to grow up faster and has been pleading with us to ride around the neighborhood without our help. You see, bicycling to our family is part exercise, part adventure discovering new pockets of our neighborhood. Giving her the ability to travel, and explore on her own would truly empower her.
Papa Allen loves to explore the mountains, deserts, and forests in search for new heights. He’s always looking new challenges to surmount in his climbing initiatives. While he’s not on an adventure, he enjoys a long road trip and viewing the glories of nature.
Mama Scout loves to travel the world. Her passport book is thicker than most families having lived all over the US, Asia, and Australia. She has plans this summer to visit Europe and Latin America. She’s never one to back down from an adventure, and is always seeking paths untraveled.
Adventure Scout is no different than her parents. Her imagination creates a new adventure daily in her house as if each nook and cranny are a new, unexplored world. She especially loves road trips and patiently endures long drives, since she knows whatever that long road takes her, it’ll be worthy of a new adventure.
Follow the Tran Family at:
Family Blog: Adventures with Scout
Check out all the 2016 Schwinn Ambassadors at our Meet the Ambassadors blog post!