In honour of International Women’s Day, we are featuring ten Hegen mums who have found strength in spite of the odds, adversity and loss. This week, we have a mother who went through a high risk pregnancy and premature birth of her twins.
Take a glance at Shiran Miller’s profile on Instagram and you might have a fleeting sense of what drives this 35 year old Mummy influencer. Her feed beautifully portrays Motherhood and life with her gorgeous family. It isn’t surprising to know that she is a professional stylist with a strong sense of aesthetic. Yet, dig a little deeper and you’ll find out that this brave Momma has been through some tough times, with pregnancy and birth challenges. As much as the Hegen team was delighted and enthralled by her public content, we were even more moved by her personal story of feminine strength.
Hegen: Tell us a little bit about yourself and your profession! What is it like being a professional stylist and Mom of three? You must bring a lot of style into your children's life.
I’m married to my best friend, Omer Miller who is a professional Chef and mum to IVF twins Moon and Ray, who are just over a year old as well as my miraculous one week old baby, Lucy who we did not plan for but joyously welcomed into our lives.
I have always been into fashion and styling before going pro. Honestly, I don’t feel like I chose this work but rather that it chose me. I believe with no exception that it is possible to combine motherhood with professional work.
As for styling and dressing my kids, I definitely gravitate towards clothing that are comfy and match my own aesthetics. Having said that, I'm truly looking forward to the time when my children can start to pick out their own looks and show off their own sense of style. I trust that they will do brilliantly!
Hegen: Your IG feed seems to show such a picture-perfect life but as with anyone, surely that’s only one side of a person’s story. What were some of the more challenging aspects of motherhood you’ve experienced?
When I was only 29 weeks pregnant with the twins, my water actually broke and I was hospitalised for a few tense weeks in the high-risk pregnancy ward. My twins ended up being born prematurely.
At first, I felt like my world had shattered. My first night after the birth was terrifying and quite traumatic. To have a difficult birth was the last thing I had expected as things had been going smoothly. Our weeks spent in the NICU felt like riding a roller-coaster of emotional anxiety. I decided to open up and shared honestly about my difficult situation with my followers, asking for their good intentions and healing energies.
The positive response and amount of love I received from them was unconceivable. I felt held, hugged and supported by my followers even though it was all virtual. To me, that kind of positive mental support was sort of a sign from above that everything was going to be all right and it gave me a strength like nothing I ever knew.
As days passed, I learned that I have strengths beyond my imagination, as my husband and I soldiered through the long weeks in the NICU until the twins were strong enough to come home. During that time, "Kangaroo care" (where we had skin-to-skin contact to maintain a healthy body temperature and promote bonding and healing) with my babies was the best part for me. I had to fight hard to express precious breast milk to my little ones; breastfeeding didn’t come so easily for me in those early days, especially as they were premature.
It felt daunting at times yet I was so happy they finally got to feed on that liquid gold. Discovering motherhood with my babies was and still is a true blessing that has changed my life entirely and helped me to get through the difficult times.
Hegen: You mentioned that you found strength in reserves during this experience with your twins. How would you define that strength and where did it come from?
I find it hard to give a clear definition of strength but I can definitely say that my life's course in the past year (with the premature birth and long hospitalisation) had taught me that I am capable of facing and rising up against challenges in a way I never believed I could do.
My source of strength is undeniably my sweet children and the pure wonder they have brought into our life. They are my greatest gifts.
Hegen: Among your many followers, there must be quite a large number who are also Mums who look up to you and are inspired by you. Who would you say in turn, are the women who inspire you with their strength?
I think Feminine power is a very abstract concept. In my opinion, Women Power (as opposed to Girl Power) is about having each and every individual woman striving to live her life, by her choice and not governed by a glass ceiling.
While Motherhood in itself is not a rite of passage personally to me it is a huge source of power as well.