Thank you for being part of a second interview with us, Jessica! How are you feeling?
Thank you for having me! This last year has been trialling, but I’m feeling appreciative. This pregnancy has been very different than my first and has allowed me to reflect on how every mother’s journey can be so different each time through. This time around has been a real learning experience about myself and my body and just appreciating different perspectives of the process.
As an actress, is it daunting returning to work after pregnancy,or do you feel supported being on a set filled with other working moms?
After having my son, I was overwhelmed by the support I received being back on set working. The insecurities of not being in the same size jeans or pumping during my breaks all seemed to disappear being surrounded by other parents on set who didn’t notice those things as imperfections but rather the magic of motherhood. I am so grateful to be part of productions that values family as much as they do.
How has motherhood changed your career as an actress?
I feel that it’s only changed it positively. Aside from juggling child care and long hours away while filming, it’s given me deeper access to myself and my craft. In complete honesty, I had some fear about getting pregnant and starting a family with the industry I’m in. It wasn’t until while I was pregnant that my perspective on success and motherhood evolved into an appreciation for one complimenting the other as opposed to the idea of being forced to choose between the two.
What advice do you have for expectant mothers in your field?
There was a point where I realized that I might not ever feel like it was the ‘right time’ in my career to start a family. My advice would be not to pressure yourself to find or create the perfect time in your career. Opportunities, real, meaningful opportunities, don’t evaporate when you become a mother. If anything, the world opens up doors that you could never have seen or expected without the experience and lens of motherhood.
Do you have any upcoming projects you are working on this year?
I have an unannounced series starting up very shortly after my due date. We’re scheduled to shoot for a few months, so the whole family will be coming along while filming that one.
The last few years have been a lot. It’s been emotionally exhausting, and you opened up about having a miscarriage last year. Having experienced a miscarriage, how did going into your pregnancy a third time differ?
I think, like most women who have experienced a miscarriage or a loss, I went into this pregnancy with some hesitancy—the ‘what ifs’ start to feel more tangible and easy to get swept up into. To add to the weight of that loss, this third pregnancy was initially a twin pregnancy, and I lost one earlier on. That added an extra layer of concern and more feelings of loss at a time when I was also so overwhelmed with joy and appreciation. There were a lot of mixed emotions, strong emotions that were felt. I really do believe in divine timing, so there was a level of trust and surrender I was able to lean into.
Thank you for opening up. How was your support system during that time?
I do feel that I had support but, at the same time, I was also trying to hide what I was going through. I was shooting two shows and didn’t have any days off to deal with the physical and emotional recovery. It can feel very isolating in the absence of others saying, “You are not alone.” I started to become cognizant of the lack of awareness regarding miscarriages. The estimated figure is that miscarriage happens to 1 in 4 pregnancies. That’s a big number. And even though I knew I was astoundingly not alone in my experience, I still felt a lot of shame sharing it at the time. I personally experienced the stigma of shame with pregnancy loss and society’s inadequacies in dealing with it. A stigma can only be resolved through awareness, education and empathy for those mothers.
Using Bravado Designs during your first pregnancy and postpartum, how would you describe the bras; are they easy to navigate, comfortable, feminine?
Quite simply, I would describe them as the best bras ever. They’re comfortable yet supportive. Elegant yet practical. Everything you could ask for.
Which one do you recommend from their collection?
The ballet bra has always been a staple for me, and I love the Plunge nursing bra, the perfect t-shirt bra!
Let’s talk about motherhood and the environment. Is motherhood an eco-opportunity?
Absolutely. You are introducing so many new things to your house and life as a mother that even a little bit of green mindfulness can go a long way to reduce waste and carbon footprint significantly.
Do you stop to think about little ways you can be greener?
We have always made an effort to rethink the waste output in our households. Living on an island has forced us to be even more mindful of our purchases and how we use and reuse them.
On that note, Bravado’s nursing collection is sustainable using recycled nylon and organic cotton, they moved to sustainable yarn, and their bras are still soft, comfy and supportive. I admire their effort to be sustainable without the price tag that usually comes with it. Do you think it’s important for brands to make sustainable efforts and maintain affordability?
I do. Being accountable and sustainable shouldn’t be the exception. It should be the standard across the board. Being green-minded shouldn’t be a luxury. It should be affordable and accessible. Brands like Bravado are setting the tone for other maternity apparel companies to raise the bar for green practices, and I couldn’t be more proud to support them!
You feel most beautiful when?
I feel most beautiful when my heart is full of love.
Lastly, What are your daily affirmations?
Taking care of yourself is productive.
Nothing that is meant for you will pass you by.
Own your wants.
I am worthy, precisely as I am.
Use your voice, even if it shakes.