We had the pleasure of (virtually) sitting down with writer and entrepreneur Samantha Eason, single mom of Isaac, Maddox, and Rowan. We discussed her experience with motherhood and transition into single motherhood, how she finds moments for self-keeping despite it all, and her favorite healthy-supporting and easy meals to throw together. Grab a cup of Rasa and dive into this inspiring interview!
Hey Samantha, really looking forward to hearing your perspective on motherhood. You so beautifully and openly speak about your experience as a human and a mom on Instagram. I am curious, what brings you the most joy as a mother?
Whenever I travel with them - reliving simplicity + being impressed by all the things that seem so little to us, but are very big and grand and magical to them, is wonderfully refreshing. The beach, the sand, shells, an airplane, the airport, new faces and cities, nature, food, treats, exceptions - that brings me joy. And then the everyday stuff… like hearing “mom I love you” randomly in their sweet voices. Having them run in to greet me in the morning when I’m sipping my coffee.
Snuggling them at 3 am when I’m exhausted and don’t want them in my bed, but they end up in there anyway and I can’t say no. It is actually almost always the in-between moments when it really hits you—how beautiful it is to be taught while teaching.
You’ve been open about your journey into and with single motherhood. How has single motherhood shaped you?
Single motherhood has made me my favorite version of me. One of the hardest things in life is to release expectations—and I’ve had to learn to do it hourly and even by the minute at times. For someone who also overthinks, and is indecisive, this has been a major practice for me to adopt. While I love the uncertainty and randomness of our days, it is very, very hard (especially when everyone is overly exhausted and whiny and impossible at dinner time) to not get so unbelievably frustrated and negative about how things “should be going”. But then the next day comes, and all of that fades.
There is a lot of beauty and healing in the uphill walk of upheaval. So although heartbreaking in certain moments, I genuinely love doing everything on my own—“up to me and because of me” is a line from one of my written pieces… I replay that in my mind often to help drive me forward. It’s empowering to say no to defeat and fear and push yourself to find new ways to change your perspective and attitude—another lesson in life no one can prepare you for or really teach you. I love to lead with love and gratitude. Always feel what you need to feel but remind yourself often that no one has it “perfect”. There is no such thing and I don’t think life would be “life” that way. Do what you can. Focus on what you can control.
That’s so beautiful, thank you for sharing that. You have so much going on! What are some quick ways you take care of your own wellbeing amidst the busyness of motherhood and juggling multiple jobs?
Walks—no matter how long. Movement and fresh air are so important and life-giving. I also love my little workout videos on @studioemerge—even if I can get 7 minutes in before the kids wake up, it’s better than nothing and always sets me up for a productive day. Washing my face is always a nice reset too. On Sunday evenings I’ve recently committed to doing a hair mask and a face mask—a few extra minutes to treat yourself in that way is a low-key but luxurious way to end the weekend and prepare for the week ahead. And although not always realistic, I do notice that when I “get ready” and put “real clothes” on, I’m happier and more eager and energized throughout the day.
A hair mask—that sounds lovely! I am always so inspired by the recipes you put together, like your latest “lazy mom broccoli” and so many more. What are some recipes that have been on rotation?
Aww thank you! And I’m so glad to hear that! Sometimes I don’t know if my recipes even qualify as recipes, but once you find what works for you, stick with it, and don’t complicate things! Now that warmer weather is approaching, I’ve been reintroducing a lot of my favorites—smoothies, salads (your favorite greens + protein of choice + something crunchy + seeds drizzled with olive oil and balsamic vinegar is my go-to!), chickpea “tuna,” broiled caprese toasts (pesto, cheese of choice, tomato, peaches, basil, balsamic, salt, pepper are easy and decadent for any lunch or din!), and on hot summer mornings I love and feel fueled by Loni Jane’s rawnola and burcha mixes—each to make in batches for busyness and so refreshing with your fruit and milk of choice!
And what are some tips for parents trying to come up with easy meals when life is busy and, at times, overwhelming?
Get rid of this idea that you have to make proper “meals” for each meal. I like to go by nutrition and ease. If the kids are being picky, and don’t have a huge appetite, sometimes it’s toast and apple and peanut butter for dinner. I’ve also stopped asking them what they want—usually, when kids (mine at least) are hungry, they don’t even know what they want! And a hungry kid will eat… so I know that as long as what I put in front of them is good/whole/real food, it will get eaten. And, of course, there are those nights where we do the little frozen pizzas from Trader Joes’s and carrot sticks with hummus. You have to do what works for you too!
Easy go to’s: plain greek yogurt + peanut butter + honey + hemp hearts + frozen wild blueberries + cinnamon. Avocado toast or toast with honey + peanut butter and hemp hearts (same toppings for a toaster waffle). Cereal! Banana + peanut butter. Sneaky seedy oatmeal. Protein-packed pancakes + muffins (we use Kodiak Cakes for ease!). A lot of moms make little egg muffins too but the boys won’t eat them. For snacks, I usually let them have a bar of some sort. They love peanuts! (I buy the big tin from Costco). Chopped veggies, a smoothie, cheese sticks, dates + almond butter. And for dinners, I usually rotate between chickpea pasta + marinara sauce, chicken + roasted Japanese sweet potato wedges, grilled cheese sandwiches, and pizza.
Okay, now I am hungry. You’re very open about the challenges of motherhood, single parenting, and the mental and emotional toll it can take at times. What would you tell someone who is in the thick of it? And/or what have you found supportive?
Tell yourself this: you’re doing the best you can and working with all you know because you’ve never done this part before. It’s so easy to be doubtful and fearful in adulthood and parenthood because we do have life experience, however, whatever you’re going through right now, today is NEW. It’s like expecting a five-year-old to automatically tie their shoe just because they are not three anymore. Teaching the boys has been very humbling and helpful for me in ways like this—we show kids so much compassion and empathy when they are frustrated, down, upset, learning, yet we always, always forget to do the same for ourselves and have to work really hard to mentally do so. It’s crazy!
I think it’s also important to “call yourself out” and after releasing what you need to release or have a good cry, ask yourself “what needs to change now?” Or “what can I do to take back my power?”. Above all (because there is only so much you can do on your own—especially while doing everything for everyone else in the house), having the support from a friend who is inspiring, genuine, a calm listener, and enables you in the right ways, is such a driving force for overcoming the mental and emotional turbulence from life + raising individuals + being good to yourself. Bonus: find a book that you can flip through every morning with your coffee/tea/water. Clarity & Connection by Yung Pueblo has helped so much and the little paragraphs are enough to carry with you throughout the day while kicking it off positively. Broken Open by Elizabeth Lesser is also the most comforting book I’ve read—a friend gifted it to me when I first filed for divorce and it didn’t leave my side for months.
This has been so lovely, Samantha! Thanks so much for sharing openly with us. One fun last question—which Rasa blend are you enjoying the most lately?