Being Mama: Leandra Medine Cohen
Founder of Man Repeller, Leandra Medine Cohen, is here to chat about what it’s like to have twins after four years of trying and why it’s important to never need your kids to be more than who they are.
Known for her witty words, street style and sharp sense of humor, Leandra Medine has recently added a new job description to her resume – mama of twins.
As someone who describes her childhood as, “pretty freaking great,” Leandra really wanted to be a mother. Her parents never needed her to be anyone for them other than who she was. This sense of acceptance and self-love helped encourage her to write honestly and openly and to go after what she wanted from life.
With a wildly successful blog, Man Repeller, turned media company thriving, Leandra and her husband set out on the path to parenthood. After four years of trying everything in the book to have a successful pregnancy, Leandra finally found the right mix of acupuncture, pre-natal yoga and IVF, which resulted in the viable pregnancy of her twins. Most importantly though, she credits newly found faith and trust in herself that her body had the strength and capacity to do it.
The first trimester was filled with intense nausea. The rest – gratitude. After the loss of her first pregnancy, Leandra, shared her grief online and never gave up on her desire to have children. This pregnancy was a blessing and something she would cherish.
“I did a lot of prenatal Pilates and yoga – particularly to keep my hips and pelvic floor strong to help with labor. It’s very common to need a c-section with twins, but I wanted to make sure I did everything I could to set myself up for a natural delivery. I was very well aware of how beneficial the exposure to bacteria on the way out of the womb is for a newborn, so I really wanted to be able to give birth naturally. However, I did not put pressure on myself if it wasn’t going to be possible. The odds for a vaginal delivery are 50/50 with twin labors. I also ate a TON of salmon. I read somewhere that it helped with fetal brain development and really committed to that. Probably too much.”
Now three-months-old, their twin daughters, Madeline and Laura, are constantly changing….and eating. Right now they’re on a 5-a-day feeding schedule so mostly it’s just: wake up, feed them, feed yourself, back to bed. Rinse and repeat.
“I have not gone back to work yet so I’m not sure I’ve really experienced the transition so much as if I’d had a temporary radical life change (going from working with no kids to not working with two kids.) My mom gave me some pretty good advice, though – After I gave birth, she said that she had a large quantity of time with me and my three brothers but not enough quality time (she stayed at home with us), and that I shouldn’t feel guilt about not being there so long as when I am there, I am truly there.”
When asked about advice she has for herself as a mom, Leandra simply said, “Surrender.” She’d also probably add “Sleep.”
Fast Five with Leandra
Do you have any advice for your children?
They’re just 3 months old! So at this juncture…Be patient. I would never starve you, I feed you before feeding myself, the bottle is almost ready!
Hardest thing about motherhood?
How paradoxical/contradictory it can feel.
What’s your proudest mom moment so far?
I’m still very pleased when they burp.
What’s your favorite weekend family activity?
Taking the kids out in carriers – my husband wears one and I wear one and we just roam around Soho.
Do you have any important family traditions that you want to share with your children once they’re older?
Our Friday night and Saturday ritual of Shabbat — the Jewish “day of rest”
See more from Leandra at Manrepeller.com