Real Mama: Connie Gorecki

Image by Cari Hollis Photography

Tell us a little about yourself…

Who am I? I am the youngest of eight children born in Orange County, Calif. I grew up in a very low-income household, as only my father worked, so my mother could stay home to take care of all of the kids. I grew up mainly with church friends/families, as my mom was very involved with our church. My parents were extremely strict so we were always kept very close to them and were not allowed to do much outside of church.

As I got older, I wasn’t a “bad” teenager but I definitely wanted to explore and do things that I wasn’t able to do in my younger years.

I was always into music- I joined choir at church and at school. It was my way of expressing myself and I was good at it. It was my number one hobby, I truly miss it now. Shopping was and still is my second hobby, but now I shop for my daughter and not so much for myself.

Decorating my home is something else I truly enjoy. I love redecorating, selling my things to buy new ones every so often, organizing and keeping everything up to date.

Before I was married, I hardly ever cooked. I was too lazy and I didn’t see the point in making a meal for just one person. Lame, I know. Things sure do change when you have a family of your own. Cooking is now one of my many hobbies and I’m learning so much. I try to make new and different things so my husband doesn’t get bored and so that my daughter isn’t a picky eater when she’s a bit older.

I’m married to a wonderful man who I love to death and have a beautiful little girl who takes my breath away. I enjoy spending time with my family, whether it’s going to the park and playing sports or hanging out at home eating pizza and watching a movie. I enjoy being out and meeting new people but I’ve learned that my husband is a homebody so we try to do a little bit of both so we’re both happy.

Where is home?

Home is where my family is. I live in Orange County, California where I was born and raised. As much as I would love to be able to live in another state, I honestly don’t see myself leaving Orange County. It’s my comfort zone and my entire family is here.

What are your secrets to balancing life as a mama, loving wife, and whatever else you manage to squeeze into a day?

This is a tough question. Sadly, I don’t think I’ve learned how to balance my life as a mom, wife, friend, sister and daughter yet. Some days I feel like I’m doing everything right and life is great and others days I feel like a huge failure. It takes a long time to adapt to becoming a wife and/or mom. I will say that I try my best to communicate with my loved ones, ask for help when I need it and spend quality time with them. Those three things alone keep me sane.

How do you find time to maintain “you” with an active little lady?

Time? What’s time? There’s not enough time in a day/week/month/year.

My husband and I try to help each other out a lot so that we get a little bit of time for ourselves. He’ll stay home and watch our daughter so that I can go shopping, get a pedicure or take a long shower, etc. And I do the same for him.

I also try to take advantage of nap times and work out when I’m able to, read a book or catch up on my reality TV shows.

Who has been your biggest inspiration?

Without a doubt, my biggest inspiration is my mom. She’s taught me so much over the years and as I’m getting older, I’m appreciating her advice and love more and more. She has the biggest heart and is always there for my family and me. I don’t know what I would do without her.

What has been the best advice you’ve received as a mama and who did you get it from?

The best advice I’ve received was from one of my sisters. She told me that not everyone is going to approve of my decisions, like my parenting skills or agree with everything I do. That no matter what people said or did, to always follow my heart and mommy instinct because only “I” will know what is best for my child.

Are you the kind of mama you thought you’d be?

Most definitely not. Becoming a mom wasn’t something I even thought I’d experience. Now that I’m a mom, I’m blown away with the things I’ve done or am doing.

I never thought I would breastfeed for more than a few weeks/months, yet here we are at 14 months and still breastfeeding.

I never thought I would bedshare, but we kept her with us for four months and she will still randomly sleep in our bed.

I’m very strict with a few things and it’s made me realize how I’m doing things the way my mother did and I NEVER thought I would be that kind of mom.

I guess in a way I always thought I would be less strict and less of a worrier but I’m the total opposite.

Do you have a mama mantra? Or something you find yourself repeating over and over when times are tough?

The one thing I do tend to repeat over and over, but just in general about being a mama is “never say never.” You just can’t say you would never do something unless you’ve been in that situation/place. I think most new mamas learn this very quickly.

What is your best piece of advice for new first time mamas?

Do things the way you want to do them and not because you were told differently. Just because one mom had a specific experience doesn’t necessarily mean that the same will apply to you.

Enjoy your newborn, hold them all day if that’s what you think they need, don’t feel bad for not cleaning or cooking the first few months.

Enjoy your time with your babies because you will seriously blink and they will be toddlers before you know it.

What has been the hardest part of parenting for you?

The hardest part is learning that it’s okay to spend some time away from my daughter. I’m having a hard time leaving her with family so I can spend quality time alone or with my husband. I know she will be okay but I haven’t reached that comfort level yet.

What has been the easiest part of parenting for you?

Devoting my time to her. I love going for walks with her, singing to her, rocking her to sleep every night, teaching her, playing with her and talking to her.

Where do you see yourself in ten years?

In ten years, I see myself living a beautiful home with my husband and two kids (yes, I said two). They will both be in school and I’ll be working part time as a secretary. I would be extremely involved with their school; in the PTA, after school activities and sports. I’d also like to be volunteering with the kids at a community or senior center.

If you could go anywhere in the world, where would you go and why?

If I could go anywhere, I would take a tour of France. It looks like it would be an amazing place to visit with lots of activities to do.

If you could have any super power, what would it be?

I would love to be able to cure sick babies. The world can be so unfair sometimes and it breaks my heart to pieces when I see newborns/infants/babies dying from a sickness. If I could save each and one of them, I would in a heartbeat.

I think Connie is one incredible mother with a huge heart of gold!

By Sarah H.

Sarah is a homegrown Canadian girl who currently lives in Alberta with her hubby and sassy little miss, Georgia! Now at 20 months into her career as a mom, she has realized she and Gia are the same sassy, rambunctious people and somewhat has a handle on things, although there are many surprises at every turn! When Sarah is not chasing her firecracker of a daughter, she is working on household DIYs, home decor, and working at her day job as an HR Practitioner for Canada for an Oil & Gas company (fun!). She loves being outdoors and in the summer she and her family are actually hard to find at home. Sarah can't cook or clean very well but she can handle large power tools and change your oil so she figures that makes up for her lack of domestic qualities!

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