The Life and Times of Courtnee James
I met Courtnee some years ago on campus at the University of Michigan! She’s a bomb mama and an all around amazing woman. Read about her journey!
How would you describe the Life and Times of Courtnee?
Full of adventure! Though, not the kind of adventure you'd see on a movie screen. I find that living my life is an adventure and I'm definitely enjoying every moment of it.
What’s your day job and what’s your passion?
Amazingly, my day job aligns with my passion. I am currently an editor for an SEO marketing company. Working in this role helps me in my personal life to tailor my own writing and blog content with the hopes of reaching more readers.
What is your why?
My "why" is my family. I'm all about making sure I make them proud in every way possible.
What motivates you?
What’s your daily routine?
I try to wake up before my son so that I have a few moments to gather myself before the day but often I find him talking on the baby monitor to be my alarm clock. Once we're up and dressed for the day, we walk the dog, eat breakfast and get the day started. While I work in my office, my son plays. We take breaks to learn flashcards, get some fresh air, and eat. After I put my son to bed, it's my time. I usually battle with whether or not I'm going to stay up and enjoy this alone time or if I should go to sleep to rest up for the day ahead.
What made you start The Squeeze Daily?
I started The Squeeze Daily as a way to encourage young mothers like myself. By talking to many of my friends who are mothers, I found that there's so much about being a mom that isn't discussed amongst our peers. We only see the good days on social media while the bad days are hidden. It is my hopes that my blog will "keep it real;" telling all of the juiciness of motherhood—the good and the bad. I want mothers to know that it's ok if you have a bad day; it's normal.
How and why did you begin your self-love journey?
I would have to say that my self-love journey began in college when I first cut my hair. I know it sounds cliché but after going back and forth with different hairstyles and extensions, I found myself more confident with short hair. I took a slight detour on my journey after giving birth because let's face it, your body goes through so many changes! I'm learning to love my new and improved body. I'm finding that same confidence that I once had again and it feels great!
How do you care for yourself physically, mentally, and emotionally?
Physically, I make sure to eat a balanced diet—and when I say balanced I mean if I'm going to eat terribly one day, I'm sure to balance it out by eating healthy and working out the next. Mentally and emotionally, I'm sure to take mommy breaks here and there when I have time to myself to take care of my mental health even if that means calling a baby sitter while I go to the movies alone or to the nail salon to get some me time. It's so important that I take care of myself so that I can be the best me for my son.
How was your pregnancy and journey into motherhood?
My pregnancy was fairly simple. Thankfully, I didn't have any complications and I didn't experience swelling and all of the weird physical changes until the very end. I will say that I don't miss it and I'm happy to not walk around feeling so heavy. Motherhood has given me purpose; I wake up every morning knowing that I have a responsibility to make sure my son is ok.
What do you want to tell women about raising a son?
I've only had a son for 17 months so there's so much that I'm still learning. I know that there will be some things that I won't be able to teach him—that's where his dad comes in. But of the things I do plan on teaching him is how to respect himself and a woman.
How do you balance your autonomy as an independent woman and mother?
Wow! That's a great question. I'm still learning this. It's amazing that one can live life for so many years and then forget how to be themselves when they become a mother. That was me—still is in some aspects. But I'm learning that learning to separate the two is healthy and maintaining my health helps me be a better mom.
What do you want to tell women about thriving in your twenties?
Enjoy life! Don't let anyone take your joy away. I've enjoyed my twenties. The first half I spent living for me and now I'm able to do that with more of a purpose as a mother.
How do you live intentionally?
I used to live for the day because I lived by the motto that "tomorrow isn't promised." While I still take that into account, I'm working on living with intentionality because there's a small being watching my every move. I'm careful about the examples that I set from showing him how to brush his teeth to teaching him how to pick up after himself. My intentions now are set on raising a tiny human being, not just living for the day.
What's your inspiration?
I'm inspired by the village around me. I'm so blessed to be surrounded by some many examples of light; from my family to my friends—I have an amazing support system.
What do you want your legacy to be?
I want my legacy to show that I lived life to the fullest and that I was a light to anyone who needed it.