Her First Mother’s Day

When we last spoke with Brandi, she was a newlywed and busy entrepreneur. Now, she’s a new mom, happy wife and busy entrepreneur—during a global pandemic!

Brandi and Mitch welcomed their first child, son Troy, in February, and we couldn’t resist checking in with her for Mother’s Day.

(If you recall our previous chat with Brandi, you’ll remember she’s a passionate advocate for health and fitness and personal trainer as well as the driving force behind Camp Gladiator here in Tampa Bay. So you won’t be surprised that she celebrated Mother’s Day with her first mommy-son 5k run! “Running is my happy place,” she says with a laugh.)

We heard a lot of laughter in Brandi’s voice during our chat—and a few adorable baby giggles, as well. “He’s so precious—super alert and super happy—always giggling and smiling,” she says.

Mom, Baby and Dad are well—safe and healthy during the global pandemic. And doing their best to handle it all as a team and with grace.

“Grace” is an important word for Brandi now, she shares. “I would have had more time off with him—7 weeks,” she says, “But I really only got 3 weeks due to COVID-19 and Camp Gladiator going completely virtual, which has been great.

“But ‘grace’ is big. I give myself more grace now. I’m very goal oriented, a gotta-have-it-done person. Knowing that I’m not going to get through all of my emails, all of my to-dos every day and being okay with that is a change. It’s something that has come since I’ve become a mother.”

Like every new mom, Brandi says one of the challenges is “figuring everything out for the first time: nursing, sleep, diaper changes, clothes—it’s all new.” Brandi says she’s been educating herself, reading a lot, and asking a lot of questions of Troy’s pediatrician and other moms. “I’m blessed to have a lot of awesome women in my life to go to for advice!”

She encourages all moms to be sure to take care of themselves. “I want to lead by example, making time for myself and my health. I have bath time to unwind, while Mitch has Troy. Or I go for a solo run or spin class or yoga on my own. I unplug.” Whatever makes you happy and healthy, she says, is worth making time for. “You have to be happy and healthy to be able to care for others,” she says. “And you deserve to be happy and healthy, too.”

Brandi also encourages moms to ask for help. “Asking for help, for time for yourself, for help with work is not a sign of weakness,” she says. In fact she’s already making for plans to bringing in help with childcare and her business when the pandemic restrictions allow. 

In the meantime, as a new mom, Brandi finds herself rearranging priorities: “In my world family comes first, and then the business. Monday, he was in such a great mood that instead of spending three hours working, I spent that time cuddling and playing with him. I know that I’d never get those moments with him back.”

Brandi’s instituted some systems to help protect her family time. “Having boundaries is really important,” she explains, “especially being an entrepreneur and dealing with people. I get 500 texts a day. This is the best advice I can give anyone: have time to unplug with your family. I unplug after 5 p.m. on Monday and Wednesday. My clients and team all know: I’m giving my family quality time. I’m not on my phone. This lets me have those moments with my newborn and my husband.”

Brandi gets up a little bit earlier on Tuesday and Thursday to go through the previous day’s messages.  And she carefully plans her work schedule for the weekends. “I’ll book three hours of work on Sunday, which Mitch, my husband, has as quality time with Troy. But after that she says, “I’m all theirs.”

Watching her husband and her son together, Brandi says, is blissful. “He’s such a good partner. We’re both working during this pandemic, and we couldn’t bring in anyone to help with childcare, but we’re making it work.” Mitch pitches in with everything—the household, cleaning, the baby. “We switch off: Sometimes he’s cleaning or cooking. Sometimes I am. Sometimes he’s working, and I have the baby. And vice versa.

“I am so happy, so blessed,” Brandi says of life as new mom. “I never knew what this love would feel like. I thank the Lord every single day for Troy and my husband.”

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