Being a first-time, soon-to-be mother is already equally daunting and exciting in itself, but add the uncertainty of COVID? And that’s a mixture of emotions in itself.
We spoke to EverMom Christie Ferrari about her background as a pediatric psychologist, who trained at Johns Hopkins, how she transitioned to becoming a fashion psychologist, and how she utilized her own tips in mental health to keep her calm and collected throughout her pregnancy – all while finding ways to savor her first pregnancy during these times.
How has your pandemic pregnancy differed from the pregnancy you had envisioned?
It's almost what wasn't different than what I expected or envisioned? Everything! This Is my first child and I had all these Ideas about the appointments, the scans, the friends, the baby shower, everything - nothing went as planned. My husband hasn't been to a single appointment with me inside the room since the 2nd appointment back In March. I haven’t really been able to see many of my friends at all, and my baby shower - while I think everything was super amazing - had to be a drive-by shower, as we couldn't get people together due to COVID. You add to that the stress of health for me, my baby, my family - needless to say, it's been quite different than expected!
But I always like to add a silver lining to any situation – I always like to see the glass half-full. The pandemic also allowed me the opportunity to slow down and enjoy it – not feel guilty about it and take in every minute.
What routines have you tried to maintain during quarantine to help keep some semblance of a normal lifestyle?
Routines are so important, in particular with everything that's going on. I do my best to keep a work routine of waking up by 7am, having breakfast and being on the computer or getting ready to photograph or film by 8:30, 9:00 every day. I also try to practice some "me" time in the form of a pedicure, for example.
What exactly is fashion psychology and how have you married your passion for fashion with your professional studies as a clinical psychologist?
Fashion psychology in essence is all about how clothes make us feel and the persona we want to portray or showcase when we wear certain things. What clothes make us confident? Carefree? Can clothes help us answer the question "Who do we want to be today"? I always had a love for fashion and then developed a love for psychology in school, and I really wanted to dig deep into the "why" of things - why do we wear what we wear and can we selectively choose one Item over another when trying to achieve something or come off a certain way?
What has your experience been like with maternity shopping? How have you adapted your pre-pregnancy style to your new body?
For the most part, I've lived in dresses, and I didn’t quite adapt my style much, to be honest. I just went up a size or two. I think I actually own three maternity pieces: a pair of shorts, some overalls and white jeans. All of which have come in quite handy, but for the most part I opted for dresses. I didn’t want to invest in a wardrobe that I wouldn’t be able to use and take advantage of in the future so hence the decision to just go up a size or two. Luckily, the majority of the pregnancy took place over Spring and Summer, which made it easy to just throw on the dress as opposed to needing to look for jackets, coats.
As a clinical psychologist, do you feel some level of preparedness going into parenthood, in regard to parenting tips?
Luckily, I am a pediatric psychologist and worked and trained at Johns Hopkins hospital, so I do have a background on how to work with babies and children. I even worked in the pediatric sleep clinic, so I feel I am a bit more prepared but at the same time, I'm a first-time parent so we'll see how things go! Wish me luck!
You've spoken about prioritizing your happiness over what someone else thinks of you. How do you balance this as such a prominent influencer? How do you think this will influence the way you teach your son to prioritize his own happiness?
There's no other choice. People are always going to talk and criticize. There is not 1 person in the world who is admired by everyone and that isn’t criticized. So, you have to prioritize what is right for you. Only YOU are going to know that, because there will always be someone who disapproves of what you do. Whether you are an Influencer or not and there's no point in losing sleep or happiness over It.
For me? I always interact and engage with my followers and love hearing what they disagree on, or their feedback. And this is with the understanding that I’m here to provide content they find enjoyable and informational and not everything I wear or write will be universally loved by everyone.
For my son, I’ll teach him the same thing: prioritize your own happiness. You will never be able to please everyone. Of course, there are consequences for actions, but follow what you think is right.
You have a running series on IG called #DrCsTips, where you share with your audience advice as a psychologist. How do you incorporate those tips into your own personal life while also balancing those moments where sometimes your own pieces of advice go out the window?
It's easier said than done, right? It is tough sometimes, even for a psychologist – no question about it. I try, of course, to follow the tips I provide because they are research-based. But like you said, I’m human and sometimes even my husband has to tell me to remember to follow my own advice.
What does self-care look like for you while pregnant?
Self-care means taking the time to take care of me - and my baby. It’s something that is very important to me and something I constantly share on my channels – the importance of taking care of you, even if for a few minutes. For me that means taking relaxing showers and taking my time during my morning and evening beauty routine to decompress and be more mindful – more present. I’ve incorporated Evereden’s Golden Belly Serum to that routine and use it twice a day. It smells amazing, and feels great in my hands and super smooth and silky on my tummy. But more than that massaging the serum on the belly has helped me be more present, mindful and at peace during my pregnancy, and I feel it has also helped me bond with my baby. All while also helping reduce stretch marks too, so it’s a win-win.
What is your Eden?
The beach or pool! Or anywhere near the water!