To celebrate Mothers Day, TVM co-founders Marissa and Sarah have interviewed their own beautiful mums.
Words by Marissa about her mum, Pamela:
My earliest memories of my mum were of her flowing hair, like Pocahontas, her earthy smell like warmth and love. Hosting little birthday parties for us in the backyard of our home, so down-to-earth and welcoming to all.
One kind-hearted, travel obsessed, life loving soul with a fiercely passionate heart, particularly when it comes to her family. Tunes always blaring, food always cooking, travel always on the horizon. Her loyalty and love for my dad, her family and her gorgeous female friendships are something I admire, always. Her ability to be so damn happy for other people, to have no issues giving compliments when they’re due and her friendly disposition – Pammy will strike up a conversation with a stranger, anytime, anywhere!
Nowadays, she’s a nan to four busy and talkative kids, we camp together and chat about our past and future travel plans, she’s always there whenever we need her and even when we don’t realise how much we do, our early morning walks before sunrise are something I will never take for granted and my sister and I have inherited her love of a nice French bubbles, vino, great tunes and a good boogie – plenty of memories include all of those elements combined!
I couldn’t be more blessed to have my mum in my life and here I chat to her about motherhood. I hope you enjoy the read.
Pamela, Byron Bay 1970.
Pamela in Queenstown NZ, 1977.
Marissa: Tell me about Nanny Joan, what are your earliest memories of her as a mum?
Pamela: She was the best mum and so loving but also strict in that we had rules, good manners were important to mum. She was always there for me with a cuddle and a kiss. I was so lucky to always feel safe, loved and secure. I loved my childhood and both my parents, I was blessed to have them both.
Do you feel as though you intuitively felt into motherhood? I don’t imagine you as being heavy on the routine?
Yes, I do, it just felt natural to me and I loved every minute. I went with what I thought you needed and it seemed to work. Your father always said I was a natural and calm and therefore you and Amy were also really calm, happy babies.
Pamela, Amy and Marissa - the 80s.
One of the biggest things I find so valuable now as a woman, that I didn’t see so much when I was little, is your ability to celebrate other people’s success and especially other women. You’re a really authentic cheerleader and it is one of my favourite qualities of yours! Amy and I both display this trait too and I’m so proud you’ve instilled this in us. What was a characteristic of Nan’s that you feel was passed on to you, that you really value?
I suppose mum instilled in me a good sense of self, in that I was happy within myself and my life so was equally happy to see my friends thriving also. I know how nice it is to hear something positive and I love to pass that forward when I can. Also I am fiercely loyal, as was mum, loyalty is very important to me both with my family and my friends.
As well as your love of travel and your passion for family, something else I admire about you is the beautiful female friendships you have in your life. I love that your closest friends are from primary school and you still have your annual girls’ getaways. How important is having an amazing network of women in your life, particularly as a mother?
Oh my, I am so blessed to have my girlfriends, what wonderful women they are. My friends were instrumental in accompanying me and I them on our journey through motherhood. I think it is so important for young mothers to have women they can talk to who will listen without judgement and then in turn be listened to. Lots of laughter and tears over the years, oh and wine of course!
Now as a grandmother I still have the same girlfriends and we are on a different journey together, but together we definitely are.
Pamela with Jennelle, Shauna, Joanne and Donna.
How did motherhood change you as a person?
One thing I said to both you and your sister was to not even think about having babies until you are ready to never be number one again. In saying that, for me when you and Amy were born I felt I became a better more selfless person. I love being a mother.
What were some of the biggest lessons you learned early on?
To trust my intuition, as mothers usually get a gut feeling for what is right and also to seek help, if not sure. One of the most important things I adhered to and also advised you both to do was to be consistent and if you make a disciplinary decision to stick to it - even if you feel you were too quick to make that decision.
What has been the best thing about being a mum?
The whole process has been wonderful, even the testing times. I honestly think for me being a mum was the most rewarding experience I could have ever had. The nurturing, loving and guiding of your children to grow into wonderful humans cannot be underestimated - and look how wonderful you and Amy are!
Naw, thanks Pammy! And your proudest moment as a mum?
Ooh this is too hard a question to put down to one moment, as you and your sister have given your father and I endless proud moments but I must say watching you both with your own children I could burst with pride, you are both amazing mothers.
...And the most challenging moment?
Ha ha! You both laugh at me when I say that you were both pretty easy and we didn’t have too many challenging times, which is true. I would say girls around 15 years of age can test you in that they feel that they know a lot more than they do and feel that they should be allowed to do a lot more than they are allowed to. We were pretty strict and kept you both busy with sports, that is a good way to tire out any teenager.
How do you feel motherhood has changed since having me in the 80’s, to now watching me parent my two girls in 2020?
I don’t think motherhood itself has changed that much, as you both have the same values as I had in that our kids always come first. In saying that, you are both very creative and love your career paths, so I feel maybe there is a little more pressure now for young mothers to try and fit it all in.
Pamela and Marissa, Christmas 2019.
Life has changed so much since we were little. I’ll bet you’re glad we didn’t have social media back in those days! How would you navigate the world of social media as a parent nowadays? Personally, I am not looking forward to it!
I don’t blame you for worrying about social media! I think from what I see too many parents let their kids have mobile phones way too early and it seems to be the same with screen time too. When I read about some of the awful things that occur on social media, my first thought is just get them off it! I would try to discourage the kids from using it at all, or at least for as long as possible.
As we all know, no marriage is perfect by any means but it was such a blessing to see both Nan and Pop and obviously you and dad, so in love and connected my whole life. What’s been your secret over the past 44 years?
No marriage or relationship is perfect but I have always told you girls that I feel communication is the most important aspect to any good relationship, of course along with love, attraction and values. Dad and I talk about everything and try to solve any problem before it becomes a big issue. We have been together 48 years in total, so we have grown together, we are blessed!
Pamela and Michael, Christmas 2019 at Seal Rocks.
What’s once piece of advice Nan shared with you when you became a mother, that you’ve always remembered?
To trust my instincts and go with what I felt was right and that if I felt I needed help with anything just to ask. She was an amazing mother I was very lucky to have great parents.
Love you Pammy x
Pamela, Marissa's daughters Pepper and Stevie, Marissa, Amy and Joan, 2013.