“While I’m hustling to create a better future for myself and my family, I’m also learning to be a mother to my son,” said Bria Bronwyn. “Everyday is a lesson in finding balance in our little big world.”

Portland based Bria Bronwyn runs a social media and marketing firm, @dopeafide, is a new mom, and a cannabis advocate. After being personally touched by the story of her son Jasper’s birth, Sweet Jane felt a kinship and wanted to learn more about her journey into motherhood and why cannabis remains an important part of her daily life.

Browyn is a #highmom we want you to meet!

Tell us about your recent entree into motherhood (we know it was a powerful one). It sure was! I’m not sure what kind of fairy tale I expected when I became pregnant (the media lies), but my experience was not the grandest. I experienced extreme nausea throughout my pregnancy which made working, or even functioning, impossible. I spent much of the time binge watching Netflix shows and attempting to create when I had strength. To sum it up, I am no fun pregnant. I was ready to hold my little man and to be done being pregnant. Since he had grown quickly with a strong heartbeat we were shocked when the birth went other than planned.

The nurse began noticing that his pulse would drop when I contracted. The doctors realized the cord had wrapped around his neck and that he wouldn’t make it through a vaginal birth. I was rushed into a room with more nurses and doctors than I could count and remember repeatedly asking for my husband, because I would not and could not do it without him. He held my hand while I waited the longest ten minutes of my life waiting to know if my son would live or not.

Hallelujah, here came Jasper! Crying and peeing all over everyone; a habit he hasn’t broken.

My husband left my side to put our son’s first diaper on and the nurse asked me if I’d like to hold him while they stitched me up. I wish with every ounce of my being that I could have. The drugs and adrenaline were so strong that I was shaking so hard my shoulders ached for days afterwards.

I’ll never forget how my body felt in that moment. Like dirt had been dropped in my abdomen and I wasn’t sure if I would live till they sewed me up. It broke my heart that I couldn’t hold him. Needless to say, the shakes went away and I held him for days at a time, but the experience rocked my family and took us a long time to get over. I can’t imagine how my husband felt going from excited one minute to unsure of his wife and son’s future the next. I’m just thankful for the nurses and doctors who made sure we’re both here today.

As a mother, how has cannabis shaped your parenting?My relationship with cannabis has certainly changed in a few ways! Before Jasper came, we had ashtrays and weed scattered throughout the house and predominately smoked joints. Now, we plan our seshes around Jasper’s nap schedule and only smoke in the garage or outside. Dabs have made parenting so much more convenient! While joints can take more time to roll and smoke, a quick dab gets me to where I want to be without so much mess to clean up during a limited nap schedule. I smoked pretty consistently throughout my pregnancy and while I miss having a good jay, dabs and edibles help me to partake while still having time to clean the house and work on social media.

Why do you feel it’s important to be vocal about your role as a mother and cannabis through @Dopefide and @OntheBrynx.There are so many  stigmas out there about cannabis and parenthood. I feel it’s important to help normalize safe cannabis usage in pregnancy and parenthood. A lot of women are scared of the legal and social repercussions of using cannabis while having children. For pregnant moms, cannabis is the perfect way to stay away from prescription drugs given by doctors. As a stressed out parent, it’s so easy to turn to alcohol or cigarettes to help with stress, but cannabis will help soothe anxiety and sleepless nights without the detrimental effects. I strive to use both of my platforms to start and nurture the conversations concerning cannabis and pregnancy/ parenthood.

What advice do you have for other working moms? (Sweet Jane included!) The best advice I can give other working moms is to not be so hard on yourself. Sometimes you need “mom” time. Whether that’s a bubble bath, exercise or just unplugging from your family or social media, make sure to take time for yourself. Don’t feel guilt because you ask for help or don’t feel like the best mother all the time. You’re human, not just a mom. You’re also a hustler and deserve to have a career and children.

There are too many stereotypes concerning moms and working which is fueling the wage gap. Take however much time you need in the beginning to be there for your little, but when you’re ready to get back to work do so and leave the guilt out of it.