She is a well-known blogger, model, entrepreneur and wife to one of Melbourne’s most famous nightclub owners! But, Rozalia’s favourite title would have to be ‘mum‘ – to her gorgeous daughter Willow, 18 months! And Rozalia has been kind enough to take the time out from her busy schedule to have a chat to us about her journey into motherhood!
Can you give us some insight into your journey from model Rozalia to Mumma! How much have things changed and how have you adjusted?
My entire life has been turned upside down since Willow came into our lives but I wouldn’t have it any other way! Yes, being a mother is amazing but it doesn’t come without those challenging days where I wish I had 3 bottles of wine in the fridge!
I look at motherhood the same way as I look at life, you have good days and you have bad days however being a mother is the most incredible experience that I truly feel lucky to have a healthy and happy baby. It did take me a few months to get into the swing of things and figure out our new routine. I am a big believer in having a routine in order for your days and nights to run smoothly.
My advice to new mothers is to just enjoy the ride. Your baby grows so quick and they will eventually sleep through the night and you will eventually be able to wear nice clothes again without being covered in vomit!
At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter if your laundry basket is overflowing, or you don’t have time to cook dinner every night, life isn’t perfect and no one is expecting you to be either.
What are your favourite parts of motherhood?
As Willow gets older it just gets better and better. As much as I loved and appreciated the newborn stage, she is a little toddler now with a hilarious personality. Sometimes she does or says something and I think to myself, who taught you that!
I’m not going to lie – I absolutely love having a little girl as I am very girly myself so we have tea parties, play with her dollies and make cupcakes. She has turned into my little buddy now and it’s just the best thing ever.
Apart from being a mum, you also run a successful blog & online store as well as many other ventures! How do you keep a balance?
Being organised is extremely important along with having a routine in place. Every morning once we have showered and got ready we will head out for our daily morning walk down to the coffee shop and park.
Once we get back home, Willow has her daytime nap where she sleeps for around 2 and a half hours and that’s when I get everything done. I do the washing, cook dinner and my emails and work on my store, workshops etc
As soon as Willow wakes up though I am back to the mum mode and then we hang out for the rest of the day. You will then find me again doing emails and blog post at night in bed. It’s little sacrifices I make such as working late into the night, which enables me to spend time with Willow. When she is awake I try not to do any work, as I want to focus and spend my time with her.
You were really honest about your weight gain during pregnancy & your journey to lose the baby weight. What would be your advice to other mums out there worried about their weight during pregnancy and post birth?
I absolutely loved being pregnant and I really enjoyed myself. I had fantastic support from all my family and friends and especially from my husband and OB. They never ever questioned why I was eating Nutella pancakes at 10 pm!
The whole journey was just so much fun and yes I put on 26kg but I had the best pregnancy, grew a happy big healthy baby who came out wanting to eat and sleep so I wouldn’t change anything and will do it all over again.
I hear stories from some woman who says that their OB told them “according to their BMI they should only put on x amount of weight” I was completely baffled as I thought to myself, you are growing a human being, don’t you want to grow a big healthy baby! Who cares how much or how little weight you put on!
The best advice I can give to women is to stop being so hard on yourself and don’t compare yourselves to others. You don’t need to prove to anyone how or when you lost your baby weight.
Once you are ready in yourself that start doing a little exercise, but don’t push yourself, as you will only feel worse and run down. I decided to run this fitness workshop with my trainer Hayley as I received so many emails from women feeling down on themselves.
The aim of these workshops is not only to show you different exercise that you can do at home when your baby is sleeping but also to empower you with the tools to maintain a healthy weight, which means no drastic diet changes.
It’s all about balance and having a healthy relationship with food. Life is honestly too short and if you want that glass of wine then go for it!
What is your relationship with your body since having your kids?
I look back to the pre-pregnancy body and I think to myself “why was I so hard to myself back then!” I was lucky enough to be slim and not have to do anything! Now I have had to really work at getting back into shape. I am the first one to admit that I love food too much to do any drastic diets.
In saying that I have a very healthy relationship with my body. In terms of not being too hard on myself. No, my stomach isn’t as flat as it used to be, but I grew a 4kg baby!
Having Willow has made me work to stay slim but it has also made me fall in love with exercising. I feel a million times happier when I am training, my hair, my skin and even my mood is better!
I’m back to the same size as I was pre-pregnant, however, I am a lot fitter and stronger. I think there is a difference between just being skinny and being fit, at our workshops we teach you how to be fit.
What kind of role model do you want to be for your daughter? What are the most important qualities you wish to pass on to her?
Every day we teach Willow manners. She says please when she wants something. Thank you after. And always says Hi and Bye. When I ask her to do something I always say “Willow can you please pack your toys away etc.…”
My pet hate is bad manners so that is something I have instilled into her from very early on. It is not hard to be a polite person.
Earlier in the year, you wrote a blog about the pitfalls of social media and negativity that can come when putting yourself out there. Unfortunately, this is especially true for mums who put themselves out there sharing their personal accounts of motherhood. Do you have any advice for others who experiences the same thing?
Social media is a part of life and is only growing. As you mentioned though with the good comes a lot of bad and negativity. Where people sit behind the masks of their computer and write negative comments. Just in order for themselves to feel better about their unhappy lives.
I don’t live in a world where I expect everyone to love me or agree with my choices. However, I have been brought up with manners. And as the cliché goes, if you wouldn’t say it to my face then why even bother saying anything at all.
When it comes to the negativity the way I look at it is ‘Silence is the best reply to fools’
So what is next for the Russian family? Perhaps a baby brother or sister for Willow?
Yes, we would love to have another little Russian running around. Willow absolutely adores babies and will be an amazing big sister.
In saying that we have a bit of travel booked in. With friends getting married in Greece, Italy and heading away to New York for work. So baby number 2 is on the back burner at the moment.
Plus Willow is so much fun and just so easy now. I really am just having so much fun being with her. I am not quite ready for the night feeds and breast pumping just yet!
And just to end with the cliché question! If you could have dinner with anyone, dead or alive, who would it be and why?
Apart from being ridiculously suave, I am also fascinated with the way he thinks and looks at business.
I watched his documentary and was blown away by the way he views fashions and business. I would love to sit there and pick his brain apart.
If you are not already following this gorgeous Mumma and her family on Insta you can find her via @rozalia_russian! And def check out her blog www.rozalia.com.au. For all things motherhood, lifestyle and fashion as well as details of her workshop series with Hayley Roper!