Jestina Franklin Opens Up About Motherhood

Two kids in 14 months and she’s still glowing!

Jesinta Franklin has welcomed her second baby into the world. With two very small babies to look after, the model turned entrepreneur and Visa Glow ambassador is certainly very busy. marie claire Beauty Director Sally Hunwick talks to the new mama about mother love, motherhood and the importance of self-care.

Sally:  Congratulations on the birth of your recent addition to the Franklin family, Rocky. What do you love about being a mother?

Jestina: I think the best thing about motherhood is that your heart expands in ways that you ever thought possible. The love that you have for your children is something that you can’t really put into words. It’s really special. It’s amazing and challenging, it’s chaotic, hard, sad, lonely and happy all at once; sometimes all in one day.

S: I have a 14 month old myself so I know what you mean. I knew I was going to be speaking to you this morning so I was thinking about at 4am when my son woke me up to party. I thought “Jesinta has probably been up 4 times already so it’s ok to be up right now.” But the sleep deprivation is so hard.

J: Whether you get up once or 5 times, it all feels the same. You just do it.

S: Now that you’re a mother of two very small children, how important is your health and wellbeing?

J: Even more so now because if I don’t take care of myself then I can’t take care of my children. Of course there are days when you don’t shower until the night or brushing your teeth feels like a luxury – you have those days as a mum. But I think finding those small periods of time where you can give to yourself and have a moment.

S: What does self-care look like now? I feel like, as a mother, you only have shards of time so you have to pick and choose the things that are really important to you.

J: Before having children self-care looked like meditating for 20 minutes or going for a long walk along the beach. Now I don’t have that sort of time; now it is about getting the right foods into my body, getting the rest when I can; and asking for help. I think to myself “ok I’m going to ask for help; I’m going to ask someone to come over to help with bath time because my husband is going to be late home”. That’s an act of self-care now. It just shifts; I’ll get to the hair salon soon!

S: Has your diet had a similar overhaul?  

J: It has changed hugely. I’m breast feeding so I need as mush nutrients as possible and I need to help rebuild the strength back in my body after being pregnant after two babies.

S: I mean, you have literally been pregnant for two years… That must have been hard on your body.

J: Yes, I had a fifteen week break in before getting pregnant again.

S: Where you shocked when you found out?

J: Completely! I had IVF for the first baby and the second baby just happened. I don’t even remember it… I feel so blessed but I do have to focus on building my strength back up and giving my body the energy and nutrients it need to recover from not only two births but also two pregnancies and breastfeeding. Also I have a little boy now who is so much hungrier than my daughter ever was. He wants to feed all the time.

S: How do you feel post pregnancy? I don’t think we ask that enough of women who have just gone through labour and who are breastfeeding and getting no sleep.

J: As a society I think we put so much emphasis on how women look after having a baby. We need to adjust that to how we feel. How we feel is much more important to focus on. It’s about resting, restoring, recovering and making sure that we’re healthy, not just for our children but also for ourselves for the future.

S: I think it takes at least a couple of months post labour to even feel like yourself again; you’re just so focused on the baby and making sure that baby survives. It’s primal really.

J: When you first have a baby, you feel that you are floating. You don’t really feel connected to people; you’re only focus is: is my baby fed? Is he dry? Is he warm?

S: I was so tired, I felt I had to check everything twice. In the middle of the night, I would go to bed then think, “wait, did I put my baby on his back? Or his tummy…” so I would have to get back up and check. You feel so tired, you’re worried that you could do something wrong at any moment.  

J: Nothing can ever explain mother’s anxiety. Like there is anxiety and there is mother’s anxiety.

S:You’re ambassador for Vida Glow. How do you include collagen into your daily routine? 

J: I have been taking collagen for two years now which is why it was safe for me to take though my pregnancies and breastfeeding. Being the second most important substance in your body behind water, your body really needs it. Especially when you’re pregnant, you get so depleted when you’re pregnant and when you’re breastfeeding that I have to take it every day just to feel better – so my nails aren’t brittle, so my hair isn’t falling out, so my skin feels better. I’m going to be tired, but I do feel that my skin feels really good despite all of that.

S: Did you start taking it for a certain issue?

J: I just felt a bit dull. I felt like my hair wasn’t shiny, my skin wasn’t as plump or dewy and my nails weren’t great so I just started taking it for that. Also knowing that it was so important to take as a women, especially as we get older.

S: How do you get it into your diet? And how do you remember to take it because I know you need to be diligent to make a real difference.

J: I have a lactation tea called Milky Mamma in the morning so I put the Vida Glow Original into that. There’s no flavour in the Original so it blends in with everything. I put it in banana bread, in cookies, in protein balls. I put it everywhere, then you’re not even thinking about it. I also really like the pineapple and peach flavours in my water. Which I take while I’m breast feeding; I drink nearly five litres of water while I’m breast feeding. I usually have the sachets in my bag, in the nappy bag . I have them all around the house.

S: Have you noticed any changes?

J: I do notice a difference. I don’t do Botox or fillers. Not that I have a problem with them but I have been doing IVF, pregnant and breastfeeding for the last 5 years so for my skin, I feel like the added collagen has been really important. I am 30 in a couple of months and I think it does make your skin feel plumper. It’s beauty from within. I feel like I don’t have to think as much about what I am putting on my skin because I am doing it all from the inside out.

S: Mornings at my house are pretty frantic. I’m interested to know what a morning looks like in the Franklin household now that you have another small baby in the mix?

J: If everyone is up at 6am, I will get up a bit earlier and feed Rocky. I’ll get Tullulah up at 6am, change her nappy get her ready for the day. Then we usually go to the park. We’re always the first ones at the park! Rocky will sleep for another 2 hours and I can run around with Tullulah. Daddy goes off to work at 7am and then we’re home for a nap. I don’t shower until the kids go down and that’s when I will do my own self-care. I’ll have my collagen. I don’t do much on my face now. I use a washer and I use a moisturiser and that’s kind of it at the moment; the simpler the better.

S: What about exercise? You’re probably not doing any formal exercise at the moment…

J: I haven’t exercised at all. I mean I walk…

S: You must be so busy though; kids keep you active. All those squats to pick things up off the floor!

J: Yes! I always joke that I do about as much distance in a day as Bud does in a game; just running around all the time. We have moved to an apartment so it’s all one level because I just can’t keep going up and down the stairs!

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