July 16th, Sunday, 2023. In Wiesbaden, Germany.
Today, at my author's meet and greet event, I showed up as everything I am. An expert, a small business owner, a mom, a military spouse, a volunteer, a friend, and a wife.
The usual author meet and greet event has book readings and book signings. and then Q&As and mingling.
And I thought, "Why not take this chance to share the spotlight with fellow small business owners and local Army community programs who have something to offer and help expecting and new parents in our community?"
So, together with the amazing Lane DeLaPena (a fellow mom too!), the library director at the US Army Garrison Wiesbaden community library, we designed an Author's event that's also a community event for expecting and new parents in our community.
I invited fellow small business owners to donate their resources and some giveaways for attendees. Displayed and distributed all the relevant resources I had collected from our local Army Community Services (ACS) office. And also invited Janz Medical Wiesbaden to set up a resource table for our target audience.
This is what we mothers do when our community leaders include us and our families.
We take the stage and share our message to inspire and lead. And then share the spotlight with others so that they may do the same.
And some of us choose to do it with our smaller kids on our hips. Unapologetic about their cries when it happens. We show by example that we can mother and work. We don't have to choose one or the other!
And boy, I was able to showcase my sharp ability in switching focus between tending to my youngest, my talk, and mingling with the audience. This skill has been honed over 4 years. And fathers can definitely build this skill too!
This event is just the beginning of many more where I'll be showing up as everything I am. I've had a taste of what is possible and I'm not settling for less in the future!
P.S. I realised I didn't once apologise for my kids being kids at the event. I didn't once apologise for diverting my attention towards them to reassure them. And it felt. So. Darned. Good!
This is why I love the Wiesbaden Garrison community I'm part of. The library upholds the value of being family friendly. Which means we don't have to stay hush-hush all the time.
Even as a volunteer, the ACS staff and garrison leadership has rarely turned me and other volunteers away just because we have to bring our kids along to be able to volunteer. Because #childcareisexpensive!
This is what being family inclusive is like! And this environment is definitely helping me thrive in my Matrescence journey.
If you'd like Dr. Kristal Lau to speak at your event, please email her at