Exclusive interview with muse artist and model Jaycina Almond
What is the full name and age of your child?
My daughter is 11 months old, her name is Syx Rose Valentine.
Could you describe yourself in one sentence?
Only one sentence! This is tough. Hmm. I am a young, black, creative mother.
What was your life like before motherhood?
I got pregnant when I was 20, so my life before motherhood was pretty much like any normal 20-year-old. I was having fun, figuring life out.
What do you do for a living?
I’m blessed enough to be able to stay home and be with Syx. Stay at home mom is definitely my main job title but I do usually have a few modeling jobs a month and I’m able to go do something that I’m passionate about outside of motherhood.
What has been your most exciting opportunity to date as an artist and model?
Hmmm! I don’t know if this counts as an opportunity but last summer I actually released a poetry chapbook and having people really resonate with pieces I wrote from my raw emotions really makes me happy.
Do you practice attachment parenting?
I do! I can’t like recite the principles or anything but I researched a lot of parenting and discipline styles while I was pregnant and attachment parenting is kind of what already came natural to me and it just felt right. I’m just doing my best and trying to be conscious of how we are raising Syx and making sure she gets all the emotional, physical, and mental support she needs as a child.
It seems that many parents who choose attachment parenting also prefer to have natural pregnancies and home births. Can you tell us a little bit about your birth story?
Yes, like I said I think it’s just that all of these things come natural to certain people you know! My birth story is pretty badass! I actually had no idea I was in labor the whole day – I ended up having to call an Uber to the hospital like mid contraction and I started pushing as soon as my midwife arrived. I have a blood disorder where basically my blood doesn’t clot so I was “high risk” – everything went smoothly though, it just added a lot of anxiety to the delivery so I’m super grateful that I had an easy one. Syx was born like 45 minutes after I started pushing.
Is this natural approach encouraged by attachment parenting?
From the people, I know that use the attachment parenting method most of them do have the same natural approach to labor and delivery and their everyday life but also motherhood has taught me to never judge. All pregnancies, all births, all children are different so I more so think you should do whatever resonates with you, you know.
The word “attachment” can have a negative connotation to some people. Do you feel that raising children according to attachment parenting will make them become less independent?
Personally, it’s all about finding that balance, when Syx was a newborn I had so much anxiety when she cried and soon you realize that you will drive yourself insane if you try to make sure your baby never cries – so I had to learn what exactly the balance is for us. But by practicing attachment parenting we have a really strong bond and she trusts me so I’m able to encourage and support her as she begins to explore independently and transition into toddlerhood and sometimes all she needs is a smile or a “you can do it” from mom to do her own thing! I think there’s a lot of unnecessary emphasis on independence as a baby/child. I don’t really need my 1 year old to be super independent you know, it’s just about what works for your family!
Did you struggle with postpartum after?
I’m blessed, I didn’t struggle with postpartum, there was definitely a short period after I gave birth where my emotions dipped but it didn’t hang around and I’m very thankful for that. I don’t know if this truly helped but I did get my placenta encapsulated and I took those for the first 6 weeks after birth and I even drank a chunk of my placenta in a smoothie!
You feel most beautiful when?
Definitely when Syx smiles at me!
What is your favourite activity to do with your daughter?
Sit outside in the sunshine and nurse and talk.
Who is your Mother Muse?
This is difficult! Mother Muse Magazine has actually introduced me to so many incredible women but I might have to be cliché and say my own mom. S/o to my mom.
Can you give a quote about Mother Muse coffee books?
Thank you!! Thank you for celebrating and giving a platform to women like myself.