WILD WMN SPOTLIGHT: DANIELA REY
What does being a WILD WMN mean to you?
I like this concept. What I like the most is how hard it is to put it in just a few words, but how easy it is to feel it. I am wild when I feel my womb. When my heart is open and leading the way. When I listen to my body and move, stretch, get on the ground, or whatever else I feel like doing.
I feel wild when I’m at home, wearing underwear and walking freely as I water the plants, make meals with my family, listen and dance to music, or lay of the couch with my hands touching my body, bringing me to the moment.
I feel wild at yoga when I breathe and moan really loud to release stress from muscles I barely ever use in daily life.
I feel wild when I’m firm with my daughter. When I set boundaries and stop the unwanted behavior before I get frustrated. When I hold her close and she looks up and I know we’re both one. Two pieces of the same pie. We both need independence, alone time and freedom. We need the space to make choices, to create, to daydream. And yet, we need each other so much too. We crave physical touch and the powerful energy of the feminine. A push and pull or a balance. Motherhood is wild for sure!
What are your favorite ways to explore your creative gifts?
My daughter’s dad and I separated when she was only 5 months old. And for the next 3 years it was just her and I, so I didn’t have much time to explore creativity. Still, there was a need to document our life in some way. It seemed like every day brought something new and special, and there was no one around to witness it. No other adult to enjoy her with, or to talk through the challenges.
My whole family lives in Colombia and I wanted to make them a part of my new journey. I wanted them to connect with Amelie so they could love her and feel ownership of her … even at a distance. So I began to take photos and share my story on a Spanish blog. And although it was intended for my family, soon hispanic mamas from all over the world began to connect and leave me comments. This little blog idea helped me connect with more people than I thought possible, it became an empowering creative outlet for me, and it unleashed a passion for motherhood photography I didn’t know I had.
This was the beginning of my creative exploration and my business, Mama Niela . A project of love that has gone through a few metamorphoses and grows as I grow in my motherhood journey. At its core, I love to meet other mamas and I love photography. I love when they invite me into their homes and let me photograph their story even if they think it’s all a mess. Photography has this beautiful way of capturing the stillness in the chaos. I’ve been told before that my photos help women see themselves as moms for the first time … and see the magic in the craziness they think they’re living at home. I know it helped me over and over through those years as a single mother and it still does!
Why are women so important and what message would you like to give women?
Women are the core of humanity. And the heart of society. It’s crazy that we live in a culture where that isn’t readily understood.
We as women are always open. Literally and physically open. Ready to receive, to empathize and support. We have menstrual cycles that dictate our capacity to procreate, but they also affect our state of mind and body throughout the month. Our feelings and how they go up and down is normal. Our need for balance and feelings of guilt for not finding it are common among all the women I meet with every week.
We live in a society that pushes us to be productive, to make more every day and spend more on things we don’t need. To compare ourselves with others and try to match up. A masculine lifestyle that relies on our ability to think, focus, compete and strive to win. But after a few decades of this way of thinking, we’re realizing we aren’t any happier, and instead, our stress levels and mental and physical health are deteriorating. So we now talk about slowing down and finding ways to connect with our bodies and quiet down the mind a bit. To connect with our feminine energy. That openness that isn’t comparing or competing, but loving and supporting. That truth we all know deep inside, that there is enough space for all of us, and we are all happier if we grow together.
My message to any woman inspired by current events is to get out of the house and find spaces to connect with other women. In Los Angeles, women circles are happening weekly all over the city. Just go to an event site like Eventbrite and search “women circle”. Get your ticket and show up. You will be glad you did, and I bet you’ll want to do it again.
Sisters, get out of the house and meet with us. Come tell us your troubles and listen to ours. You’ll find, among many other things, that your problems are human problems. You’re not failing, not worse than anyone else. Deep healing happens when you have a group of supportive women behind you.
Where can we find you?
I spend my weekdays working from home, a coffee shop, attending women entrepreneur circles like Bossladies, sharing and listening at women circles in the homes of wild women and at venues like WMN Space , and practicing yoga in Pasadena at Curative Yoga .
Daniela offers at-home photography sessions in Los Angeles for mamas with babies of all ages. If you’re in the area, and can’t remember when was the last time you got professional photos taken with your little ones, click here for more information or to contact Daniela and book a session. Your story is beautiful and worth being told with photos!
All Images Copyright of Mama Niela