MODERN beauty SPRING 2021
You,Better Than EVER
MOMMY MAKEOVERS Get back to the real you!
Celebrating GREAT Moms! Featuring founder of Jordana’s Rainbows
SKINCARE ADVICE for Moms of all ages
FERTILITY STRUGGLES Mother’s Day Malaise
MODERN beauty SPRING 2021
You,Better Than EVER
Celebrating GREAT Moms! Featuring CMO of Hivestack and Mom of 2
MODERN beauty SPRING 2021
You,Better Than EVER
Chronicles Celebrating GREAT Moms! He’s equal parts Mom AND Dad
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SOFTENS & SMOO WRINKLES TOP MEDICAL SKINCARE LINE OF THE DECADE AESTHETIC EVERYTHING COSTEMIC & MEDICINE AWARDS
SPRING 2021 CONTENTS
MOMMY MAKEOVER 04 WELCOME Post-pandemic solutions from Trevor M. Born M.D.
10 MOMMY MAKEOVER A complete guide to getting back to the real you
07 CONTRIBUTORS Introducing our talented photography team
16 HEALTH & WELLNESS First-hand accounts of fertility endeavours
08 SKINCARE Good advice for moms and daughters of all ages
19 PATIENT PROFILES Redefining what it means to be a mom
26 DOCTOR’S NOTE Getting back on track now that the end of lockdown life is on the horizon 30 CODA Judith Born tells us what it was like raising our favourite doctor
TMB COSMETIC SURGERY
EDITOR IN CHIEF Erin Mccann Supervising Editor Doug Wallace Editorial Consulting Silver Lining
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Media/ Advertising Inquiries: erinamber.mccann@gmail. com Canada 199 Avenue Road Toronto Ontario M6H 3G1 Tel: 416 921 7546 USA 910 Fifth Avenue New York, New York 10021
The information provided herein (Modern Beauty Magazine, www.trulymodernbeauty. com) by Trevor M. Born MD and other contributors does not constitute individualized medical advice and is not intended as an alternative to medical advice from your doctor or other professional healthcare provider. The information provided is for educational or entertainment purposes only. Anyone using the information provided by MB Magazine, whether medical, legal, business or other, does so at their own risk, and by using such information agrees to indemnify MB Magazine from any and all liability, loss, injury, damages, costs and expenses (including legal fees and expenses) arising from such use. If you have any specific questions about any medical matter, you should consult your doctor or other professional healthcare provider. If you think you may be suffering from any medical condition, you should seek immediate medical attention. You should never delay seeking medical advice, disregard medical advice, or discontinue medical treatment because of information found within MB Magazine or on trulymodernbeauty.com.
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Photography: Billie Chiasson; Grooming: Erin Winn
t’s almost impossible to count all the things we’ve learned from our mothers— how to treat other people, how to navigate change, how to look after ourselves. But more importantly, we learn that a mother’s love is unconditional, instinctual and all-consuming. In celebration of Mother’s Day, our lineup inside Modern Beauty includes some very mom-oriented business, including the final word from a very special contributor this issue—my mom, Judith Born (page 30). As spring is a time of revitalization, our med spa experts take a look at some motherly advice you may have received with regards to skincare, highlighting the tried-and-true tips and paring down the beauty myths we can set aside (page 08). Our Patient Profile is expanded a little this time, delivering a cool cross-section of people who are redefining what it means to be a mom (page 10). We also tackle the issue of infertility with a few first-hand accounts on the difficulties and distress, both physical and emotional (page 19). And my Doctor’s Note (page 26) offers an exploration into the collective trauma we’ve been suffering for the past year, offering some ways to heal and get back to normal. The power of ritual and a return to kindness are just two of the ways you can regain and/or maintain your sanity. Remember, if you ever need a confidence boost, we’re here to help at the TMB Clinic. We hope you enjoy this spring issue.
Trevor Trevor M. Born, M.D. Cosmetic Plastic Surgeon
EVOLUTION OF INNOVATION + MORE BENEFITS* + RADICAL RESULTS + STARTING IN JUST 2 WEEKS 1
OUR BEST SCIENCE. YO U R B EST E YES .
Billie is a photographer specializing in all things skin, body and feminine in the commercial, editorial and creative market in Toronto. She is represented by Lisa Bonnici.
Erin is a Toronto-based makeup artist.
Recent Projects: Top Secret :) Coming soon! Favorite part of the job: Creating from the imagination and turning something intangible into a tangible part of reality. All the while showcasing the true beauty of the physical, emotion and soul. Honouring my ancestors who had their choices/voice stolen from them. How will you mark the arrival of spring? Watching the earth flourish and come back to life. The most important thing you learned from your Mom: Be yourself, no boundaries, do what you love.
Recent Projects: Junos docuseries Rising, featuring singersongwriter and actress Carys Favourite part of the job: Collaborating with other creatives and meeting so many incredible people. I feel so grateful to have a job that I truly love and still feel inspired by after 20 years in the industry. How will you mark the arrival of spring? Hopefully by soaking up some sun with a bottle of Paleokerisio. The most important thing you learned from your Mom? Open mindedness. My mother was always willing to listen to someones opinion and thoughts, even if they differed from her own. She did so with a curious mind and empathetic heart.
SKINCARE ADVICE WE RECEIVED FROM OUR MOMS— WHAT STILL WORKS, WHAT NEVER DID.
Mom knew a thing or two about self-care—most of it to treasure, but some of it to trash. For instance, all the cucumbers in the world aren’t going to de-puff your eyes, but castor oil does indeed do doubleduty as a moisturizer and makeup remover. Here’s a rundown of skincare tips our Mothers gave us: the good, the bad, and the just plain crazy. 8
he was our first beauty school and taught us everything she knew about how to look after ourselves, including our skin. We’re talking of course about Mom, your original beauty guru. Did you listen to her?
ALWAYS CLEANSE BEFORE BED. Cleansers not only take makeup off, they also rid skin of the pollution, impurities and dirt it has been exposed to during the day. Best Advice: Make cleansing part of your morning routine, too – cleanse, serum, sunscreen. YOU ARE WHAT YOU EAT. It’s true. What’s on the inside makes a big difference to what’s on the outside. Diet is a big part of maintaining overall health, which in turn is reflected in that healthy glow. Drink plenty of water and make sure you’re eating properly, covering all the vitamin and mineral bases. Best Advice: No smoking, either. GET YOUR BEAUTY REST. Mom probably says that these are the hours of sleep you get in before midnight. She is mostly right. Getting enough sleep in general helps your body recover from the day, including helping skin rejuvenate. Best Advice: Shoot for a minimum of seven hours per night.
TYPECAST FOR LIFE
Wayhome Studio/Sh utterstock.com
THE SUN IS YOUR ENEMY. UV radiation brings on the wrinkles and a loss of elasticity. As well, sun damage is cumulative: You may be a sun goddess now, but the damage will show up later and you will look older than you need to, particularly your hands and face. Wearing sunscreen helps stave off signs of aging. Don’t forget to apply sunscreen to your décolleté. Best Advice: Mineral sunscreens are better for the environment and for your skin.
Many beauty experts will tell you that your age determines the skincare products you should be using. Actually, this is only partially true. When you’re young, regimen initiation products get you in the habit of taking care of your skin. Preventive care takes over right after that, followed by products that turn back the clock” flooding your beauty cabinet later on in life.
Everett Collection /Shutterstock.com
MASSAGE UPWARDS, NEVER DOWN. In reality, blending up “against gravity” will not make a difference to your skin or create a younger, firmer-looking you. Just don’t pull on your skin – massage it gently, especially the delicate areas. HYPOALLERGENIC PRODUCTS HELP SENSITIVE SKIN. This is nonsense, an advertising ploy, a word marketers use because there is no regulation saying they can’t.
MOISTURIZE, MOISTURIZE, MOISTURIZE Hydration is the key to greatlooking skin. Moisturizers reduce the chances of skin issues, helping to maintain its balance. Moisturizing helps fight fine lines and keeps skin looking younger. We like Environ Youth Essentia Defense Creme, which is enriched with antioxidants to fight free radical damage. Best Advice: Don’t forget to cream your neck!
MYTHS TO LET GO om tock.c utters h S / d Lun Jacob
ADVICE TO HEED
WASH YOUR FACE IN ICE. Never do this. Ice actually promotes spider veins and puffiness, disrupting blood flow and causing your skin to lose its elasticity. At the opposite end of the scale, washing your face in hot water is also a no-no. YOUR FACE GETS TOO USED TO CREAMS AFTER A WHILE. If Mom suggests that you change up your skincare routine every once in a while, because using one cream too much will cause it to lose its effect, she is mistaken. And if she says, “The tingle tells you its working,” you can say that the tingle is telling you your skin is irritated and could soon be inflamed! YOU’LL EVENTUALLY OUTGROW ACNE. Sadly, no. Or at least maybe not: The occurrence of acne is as inconsistent as it is annoying – it could be puberty, hormones, menopause, anything. Putting toothpaste on your spots does nothing (except make your pimples minty fresh), and the sun won’t dry acne out either – it just makes skin oilier, causing pores to clog. A better approach? Wash your face once or twice daily using a glycolic or salicylic acid cleanser. We like SkinMedica AHA/ BHA Exfoliating Cleanser, which gently but thoroughly cleanses and clarifies the skin.
The real truth is, your skin type is a more important consideration than your age when shopping for beauty products. Simply consider if your skin is: Normal, Dry Oily, Combination (oily and dry), or Sensitive. This is largely determined by genetics and not by age. Once you know your skin type, you’re set for life. // Step up to the counter at the TMB Clinic and ask our staff what products we have that are right for your skin type.
IN THE PROCESS OF GETTING BACK TO THE REAL YOU, THESE ADVANCED TECHNIQUES MAY BE THE PROBLEM-SOLVERS YOU’VE BEEN LOOKING FOR.
MOMMY MAKEOVER W
hether a small change or a complete make-better is in order, there’s no time like the present to refine your unique self and regain body confidence. To improve post-pregnancy volume loss, arrest the ravages of time and gravity or simply do something for yourself for a change, these safe procedures will bring back that natural look. >>
Annie Spratt/ UnSplash
BREAST RENEWAL ALTERING THE SIZE, SHAPE AND PROPORTION OF YOUR BREASTS CAN BE DONE WITH AN INDIVIDUAL PROCEDURE OR INVOLVE A COMBINATION OF TECHNIQUES TO DELIVER THE DESIRED RESULTS. ASYMMETRY Solution: Bilateral Breast Augmentation (BBA) is the enhancement of the breasts using a surgical implant, either siliconeor saline-filled. Benefits: The most popoular cosmetic surgery in North America, this corrects a loss of breast shape or volume over time—and a real confidence-booster.
SLOUCHY CLEAVAGE Solution: Micro Fat Grafting involves transfering fat from the tummy, thighs or buttocks to the areas of the breasts that need contouring. Benefits: Breasts are more voluptuous, acquiring a natural fullness and softness, with any hollowness filled out. UNRULY NIPPLES Solution: Nipple Correction surgery works to fix issues surrounding enlarged, asymmetrical, protruding or inverted nipples. Benefits: Improve the overall look of your breasts, alleviating insecurity over the appearance of nipples.
DROOPY BREASTS Solution: Mastopexy or breast lift is the surgical revision and reshaping of the breasts to lend a more youthful, lifted look. Benefits: Problems due to aging, pregnancy, breast feeding, weight loss or even just gravity are eradicated, so you can feel less self-conscious in tighter clothing—and give your bra a break. TOO-BIG BREASTS Solution: Bilateral Breast Reduction (BBR) is a surgical procedure that reduces fat, tissue and excess skin on large, heavy breasts. Benefits: Eliminate pain and posture problems, find freer movement and improve your self image with a tighter, firmer bustline.
BEFORE & AFTER BILATERAL BREAST AUGMENTION SURGERY
SAFE PROCEDURES FOR THE STOMACH, BUTTOCKS, ARMS AND LEGS CAN HELP LIFT, SCULPT, TONE AND TIGHTEN WHERE YOU NEED IT THE MOST.
SPARE TIRE Solution: Abdominoplasty or “tummy tuck” removes excess fat and tightens loose skin and muscles in the abdomen area. Benefits: Flatten the flabby midsection, eliminate crepey skin, improve the appearance of stretchmarks and wear clothes that fit better. BUMPS & BULGES Solution: Liposuction is the surgical removal of fat deposits from the body that are resistant to weight loss and exercise. 12
Benefits: Streamline your body contour by targeting the abdomen, arms, inner thighs, knees, hips, back and chest—putting you back in proportion. BATWING ARMS Solution: Arm Lift surgery removes hanging skin from the upper arms caused by extreme weight loss or aging. Benefits: Get more toned and tight arms— and welcome the return of the sleeveless top! UNSIGHTLY DENTS Solution: Fat Grafting transfers fat from one part of the body to another to volumize, shape and sculpt where necessary. Benefits: Create a more voluptuous behind, soften boney hands or smooth out unwanted hollows.
AGING UNGRACEFULLY Solution: Injectables like Botox®, Restylane®, Sculptra® and Radiesse® are advanced, non-invasive treatments that can be used individually or in combination. Benefits: Get help with pesky wrinkles, creases and folds, and create more volume in your cheeks, temples, chin and lips. BIG EARS Solution: Otoplasty is the surgical correction of large or protruding ears, including droopy ears caused by wearing heavy earrings. Benefits: Reduce or reshape excess cartilage to lend a more harmonious balance to your face with ears that are less pronounced.
SAGGY BOTTOM Solution: Buttock and Thigh Lift surgery can correct and enhance a flat, droopy or misshapen backside. Benefits: Tighten up thighs, contour buttocks with a Brazilian Butt Lift and enjoy a more shaplier shape.
GRAVITY ISSUES Solution: Rhytidectomy or facelift surgery, along with neck lift surgery, can correct decreased skin elasticity, create more facial volume and fix that sagging look. Benefits: With a plan that is unique to you, you can reduce facial folds and excess skin, and tighten and smooth skin on the face and neck. SINKING JOWLS Solution: Sub-Mental Liposuction or chin augmentation is a minimally invasive procedure involving the surgical removal of fat from the jowls, chin and neck. Benefits: Fix a weak chin, a double chin or a pudgy face by smoothing the contour of the jawline for a more youthful, thin and elongated look. SUNKEN EYES Solution: Blepharoplasty or eyelid surgery is the correction of excess skin and the removal of fat pockets on the upper and lower eyelids.
Benefits: You look less tired and less gaunt, get rid of dark circles and bags, and restore fuller volume to the eyes. DROOPY FACE Solution: Facial Fat Grafting is the transfer of fat from one part of the body to the face to contour and plump deflated areas. Benefits: Enhance or reshape certain facial features, lift and fill sunken cheeks and temples, or tighten a sagging jawline. SAGGING BROWS Solution: Browlifts are surgical procedures of varying intricacy, depending on your particular need. These can involve a classic lift along the hairline or less invasive endoscopic lift. Benefits: Remove excess skin on the eyelids and forehead, pulling brows into a more youthful alignment.
BEFORE & AFTER BLEPHAROPLASTY SURGERY
LOVE YOUR LABIA The genital area is so often such a touchy subject, isn’t it? Labiaplasty is labial reduction, wherein excess skin is reduced to correct problems due to childbirth and to alleviate discomfort caused by drooping or protruding labia. This is a safe and easy, relatively short surgery. Benefits: Through trimming and reshaping, and possibly fat grafting to add volume to the outer labia where necessary, you achieve more symmetry, experience improved sensation during sex and maintain an aesthetically pleasing look.
COMBINING MICRO FAT GRAFTING WITH MODERN SURGICAL LIFT TECHNIQUES, YOU CAN UNLOCK YOUR REAL BEAUTY AND ACHIEVE NATURAL-LOOKING RESULTS.
p h o to b
Benefits: The underlying weak muscles of the pelvic floor are strengthened and stimulated, so you can laugh, sneeze and cough with confidence.
MEDSPA MIRACLES “CORE TO FLOOR” TREATMENTS THAT REQUIRE NO SURGERY AND PROPOSE NO DOWNTIME ARE A GODSEND FOR THOSE LOOKING FOR RESULTS YOU CAN’T GET AT THE GYM.
INCONTINENCE Solution: Emsella® is an easy, non-invasive 30-minute treatment that delivers electromagnetic energy to the pelvic floor muscles through a specially designed chair.
WEAK PHYSIQUE Solution: Emsculpt® and Emsculpt Neo® are non-surgical, non-invasive treatments that use electromagnetic energy and radio frequency to stimulate deep, supramaximal muscle contractions and fat reduction on the abdomen, buttocks, back and legs. Benefits: Say hello to six-pack abs and a firm bottom. Another plus: Emsculpt® can help reverse postpartum diastasis recti (the separation of the abdominal muscles). You burn fat and build muscle, achieving a strong, lean and sculpted physique. STUBBORN FAT Solution: CoolSculpting® is a safe, lunch-hour treatment that uses a controlled cooling method to target and crystallize fat cells, which gradually then exit the body. Benefits: Get a tighter tummy and thighs, winning the battle of the bulge. //
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health & WELLNESS
I’M TRYING For those struggling with infertility, we could all use a little piece of that Mother’s Day love.
nfertility is really, really hard. Explaining it to people is also really, really hard, and there’s one day of the year that makes it even harder: Mother’s Day. Don’t get me wrong. I have a wonderful mother and I know many amazing moms who deserve all the adoration, praise and gratitude we have to spare. But Mother’s Day is a special kind of torture for those of us struggling with infertility, a reminder of the club we yearn to be a part of, the thing we long to experience but can’t. Every year when Mother’s Day comes around—at least for as long as I’ve been trying to conceive—I have to turn off my social media and bury myself in soothing rituals like watching old Gossip Girl episodes, drinking lots of Champagne, eating an entire pizza by myself and snuggling my dog extra tight.
bby Erin Mccann
I don’t want to celebrate and I certainly don’t want to be reminded of the arduous, painful process of going through fertility treatments: overwhelmed and understaffed fertility clinics, endless blood tests, needles, painful cervical examinations, ovulation sticks, timed intercourse (and no, it’s not fun), medication that makes you break out, gain weight and want to sleep all day. And the expense: thousands of dollars for every cycle you put yourself through (my urgently ticking clock meant that I could not wait the two years it would take to receive a government-funded cycle). Then there’s the crying—every time a pregnancy test comes back negative, every month when your menstrual cycle rears its unwanted head yet again, every time you get pregnant only to miscarry weeks later. The process is traumatic, and not just for women like me whose treatments
have been unsuccessful. There are mothers whose treatments have yielded beautiful children, yet even they can be triggered on Mother’s Day. “Like a lot of women, when I was longing to have children, Mother’s Day would make me feel a little bitter and sad,” says Rana Florida, CEO of Creative Class and mother of two girls, about her experience with Mother’s Day and infertility. “And on top of that, people would constantly ask me: “Why haven’t you had kids yet?” It was frustrating,” she says. “Now, every Mother’s Day, I’m in disbelief that I have two amazing little daughters. I’m so grateful, but the journey I went through is not for the faint of heart. There are some tough memories there that still come up,” Rana says. “I did treatments in five different states from New York to Washington, D.C. to Toronto to
accurately and screen embryos, all of which increase success rates significantly.”
California. I suffered an ectopic pregnancy, and then, after several more tries, we got pregnant again and experienced vanishing twin syndrome. So there was certainly pain and loss that happened along the way.”
For those who are hurting: there’s nothing wrong with prioritizing yourself on Mother’s Day. Take a “digital break,” make grown-up plans with your partner, steer clear of “family” zones like parks and nurture your tender heart in whatever way you need to. There are also many support groups out there, and most fertility clinics offer counselling services for those who need them.
Anyone who’s been through it can relate. You need an iron will and endless stamina to withstand the many hurdles that come with infertility treatments, including all the questions relatives throw at you and quiet innuendoes at dinner parties that result in you silently sobbing in someone’s powder room. When we decided we would do a special Mother’s Day Issue here at ModernBeauty magazine, I absolutely wanted to acknowledge all the wouldbe mothers out there to let them know: you are not alone. So many of us keep our fertility struggles to ourselves, but the reality is that there are more of us than we think. “If you take the population as a whole, about one in six women struggle with infertility, and that statistic increases with age.” says Reproductive Endocrinologist and Infertility Specialist Dr. Sony Sierra. “Nowadays, for many reasons, people are delaying getting pregnant until their mid- to late- 30s, and we’re seeing infertility numbers are more like one in four within that age group. So yes, there are a lot of women out there for whom Mother’s Day can be triggering.”
RANA FLORIDA WITH HER DAUGHTERS VALENTINA & MILA For those of you who weren’t fully aware of just how painful and awkward Mother’s Day can be for so many of us, here are a couple of ways you can help make the day easier: 1. Unless you are certain that the person you are asking about “having kids” is very comfortable talking about the subject, don’t ask. 2. Be sensitive to the fact that Mother’s Day can be painful for some, and take some time to acknowledge those who may be struggling. A personal note, flowers or a phone call just to say “Hey” can go a long way. 3. Understand that your childless friends may not want to be confronted with all things “kids” and “family” on this holiday. If they don’t like your Mother’s Day Instagram post, don’t get sore. If they don’t want to meet up with you and the kids, suggest an adults-only activity for another time. To all the mothers out there still trying, hoping, wishing: don’t lose hope—treatments for infertility are constantly evolving.
DR. SONY SIERRA, TRIO FERTILITYY
“Technology has really come a long way even in the last ten years,” Dr. Sierra tells us. “Things like new high-powered microscopes, embryoscopes and genetic testing allow us to gather more information about egg quality, place sperm more
I try to remind myself on this day of all the things I have to be thankful for: a wonderful husband, a full and rewarding life, and great freedom to pursue my career and my art. Like most of the people I know who have been through infertility treatments, I am incredibly strong. I don’t need pity and I don’t want to cancel Mother’s Day. What I could use is just a little piece of that Mother’s Day love, because here’s the thing of it: in a way, I’m a mom, too. Some might not agree or understand, but I believe that the moment you get that hope in your heart, the day you start taking fertility drugs and think, This might work, or the minute after an intrauterine insemination or in vitro implantation and you imagine your child coming into the world, you are a mom. Happy Mother’s Day to all of us. // STRUGGLING WITH INFERTILITY THIS MOTHER’S DAY? YOU ARE NOT ALONE. If you’d like to share your story or thoughts on this article, contact me at: ERINAMBER.MCCANN @GMAIL.COM LEARN MORE ABOUT DR. SIERRA AND TRIO FERTILITY CLINICS: TRIOFERTILITY.COM INFO@TRIOFERTILITY.COM
MOM Photography by Billie Chiasson Hair & Makeup by Erin Winn
IN HONOUR OF MOTHER’S DAY, WE SHINE A LIGHT ON A FEW SPECIAL MOMS WE KNOW WHO DESERVE ATTENTION AND PRAISE FOR THEIR EXCEPTIONAL COURAGE, DETERMINATION, AND STRENGTH.
T R U LY M O D E R N B E A U T Y . C O M MODERNBEAUTY MAGAZINE
Alison wears one of Jordana’s favourite headscarves and The Rainbow Bracelet from JordanasRainbows.com. 20
ALISON FIORINI Honouring her daughter and raising awareness of pediatric cancer with Jordana’s Rainbows.
“WE ARE WARRIORS.” Tell us a bit about your motherhood story.
What are some of the challenges of being a mom?
My motherhood journey began when I had Lucas in 2004, Jordana in 2005 and Laurence in 2008. Having three kids under four years of age seemed like a lot at the time but when I look back, I wish I had more because I love being a mom!
Does a mother ever stop worrying? On some days, I find myself worrying about the littlest things. Yet, because of the trauma we experienced, we’ve learned how to let go of some of the things that we can’t control. You become able to recognize an inexplicable divinity, which helps you to let go of some of the pain and worry.
My eldest, Lucas, has always been mature for his age. He tends to be quiet and modest around us, but he can also be a real joker. When we least expect it, he’ll jump in with a clever one-liner or completely offside joke and leave us all in stitches. Jordana is a rainbow in every sense of the word. I can’t remember her not smiling or laughing. She received her angel wings in 2016, but her divine presence is still with us. When we had Laurence we added the perfect spice to our family. He’s full of energy, super engaging, always curious and wide-eyed, and looks up to his big brother in every way. What’s your favourite part about being a mom? I truly love it all. I love making memories with my husband and kids. Travelling with them, or just enjoying the simple things like long walks, family meals, or when they were little and we curled up in bed to read together.
DIPG is an inoperable brain tumour that affects children in the early years of their life and has a survival rate of six to nine months. Jordana survived DIPG for only four months. We continue to honour Jordana by sharing her light and love of rainbows through our charity, The Jordana’s Rainbows Foundation. Our mission is to raise awareness for DIPG, and raise funds toward childhood cancer research. What kind of self-care do you practice, so that you can survive motherhood every day?
How have you been managing kids and family during the pandemic? While this pandemic has certainly been frustrating, scary, challenging and lonely, my family has lived through isolation and fear before. We are a little more acclimatized than the average family to the unexpected and unknown, so we’ve been managing pretty well this past year. Tell us about Jordana’s Rainbows. Jordana was diagnosed with DIPG (Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma) at SickKids in September 2015. 21
Apart from regular excercise, reading, and quality time with friends, my work with Jordana’s Rainbows is also an important part of my self care. It has allowed me to be vulnerable with my pain. Expressing and sharing my story has allowed me to heal, while helping others at the same time. There are many moms out there who struggle with loss on Mother’s Day. What would you like to say to them? You’re not alone. Whatever your circumstance is, there are so many people feeling what you are feeling. This is not something you need to bear on your own. We are warriors. We were destined to weather these storms. The key is to channel your pain into good, and service for others—this is where the magic happens. // photo by Mark Binks
NIKKI HAWKE Managing kids, a full time career and lockdowns with poise and purpose.
“DON’T SWEAT THE SMALL STUFF.” Tell us a bit about your family. I have two children: Charlotte, who just turned 14, and Lukas who is 10. My kids are three-and-a-half years apart and opposite sexes, so they don’t have a lot in common, but they can always make each other laugh. They both love the outoors, music, their friends and their extended family. Did you always know you wanted to be a mom? I have always loved kids and knew I wanted to be a mom. When I graduated high school I was voted most likely to start an orphanage!
It goes fast and your career is long. Also “don’t sweat the small stuff ” should be a mommy mantra! You’re a single mom, and you’re a powerhouse in business. Can you tell me about what you do and how you balance/manage work and family? I am currently Chief Marketing Officer for a global advertising technology company. I have to say I love what I do. Balance is hard though—especially in a pandemic
How have you been managing kids and family during the pandemic? I’m divorced and a full-time working mom, so it was really hard at the beginning. And with each lockdown or pivot, emotions can be high. I had to learn to ask for help, something I am terrible at doing— whether that was by booking a tutor for my daughter, calling on teachers for support and advice, or asking for more flexible working hours. If you could go back in time and give your new mom-self some advice, what would it be? I felt pressure to go back to work soon after both of my kids were born and I regret it. I would tell my new mom-self: do not sacrifice this time.
where there are no boundaries between work and home. A few things that have helped me keep it together include: a good chat with a friend when overwhelmed, working out, and GoodFood boxes to take the guesswork out of meal planning and prep. What kind of self-care do you practice, so you can survive motherhood? For any woman, a lot of who we are is wrapped up in what we look like or how we are perceived. A large part
of self-care for me has involved the treatment of facial paralysis caused by Bell’s Palsy, a virus which is part of the chickenpox strain, which I developed in my 20s. I always had a huge smile that could light up a room and with the right side of my face mostly immobile, I felt lost and self-conscious for quite a while. I found a doctor in New York who was able to use Botox to calm the nerves/ activity on the left side of my face so that I would have more symmetry. When I moved back to Toronto, Dr. Born was the only person I trusted to work with me on symmetry and the synkinesis I had developed from my Bell’s Palsy. He’s been treating me for the last 15 years, and this past year I asked him to perform eyelid surgery, as my right eye was starting to droop and I already had very hooded lids. He is literally a magician. My eyes look brighter and fresher, and the change gave me the little boost I needed to look and feel my best. There are many mom’ out there facing another Mother’s Day in lockdown, who have struggled this past year. What would you like to say to them? You are not alone. I want more moms to share their stories and struggles. It isn’t easy for anyone in these times. Whether single, divorced, married, widowed. There is nothing more powerful than the strength we bring each other when we come together. //
JOSEPH TITO A little bit Mom AND Dad, he’s raising surrogate twin girls all on his own.
“I’VE CHANGED A LOT OF DIAPERS.” Tell us a bit about your mother/ fatherhood story. There was a pivotal moment in my life—I was 37, living in the Middle East, earning a good living, travelling all over the world and living quite a glamorous life. One morning, I was sitting by myself in a seven-star hotel in Dubai watching the sunrise and I thought to myself: “I need more than this.” There was something missing from my life, and I knew then that I wanted to start a family. I’m a gay man, which made the process of adoption difficult. There are many countries that flat-out prohibit LGBTQ people from adopting, and then there was the fact that I was in a relationship but unmarried, which was another strike against me. I eventually found a surrogacy agency in Kenya that permitted same-sex couples, and that’s when my parenthood journey began. It was a long, tough road. Along the way, I broke up with my partner, went through four unsuccessful embryo transfers, and had to deal with many legal hurdles. There were times when I thought that maybe God didn’t want me to be a parent. When my surrogate finally did get pregnant (with twins—surprise!), the agency threw another curveball at me, telling me that unless I had a “female” companion with me, I would not be permitted to claim my children. I had to bring a “pretend wife” with me to Mombassa so that I could get my girls.
It was all worth it though, when my surrogate brought Stella and Mia into my world on November 30, 2018. I thought I knew what love was, but I didn’t know the true meaning of the word until I held my babies in my arms.
“I love you.” That’s certainly a highlight.
What are they like?
I really just try to give my girls all the love and affection that I can. There has definitely been a learning curve. I read all the mommy books, all the daddy books. I’ve had to learn to be patient, to remain calm and be more nurturing. I try to give them the kind of love my own mom gave me—she’s an incredible woman and has taught me so much.
Mia is exactly like me—moody. She needs to get her way. She’s a force to be reckoned with, which I love,
because as a woman in this world, she needs to be—but as a dad, it’s killing me! Stella is like my little Buddha. She always looks after me, making sure Daddy’s OK. What’s your favourite part about being a parent? Having two people on this earth who love me unconditionally and rely on me to take care of them gives me a great sense of purpose, which was missing from my life before. I’m very grateful for that. Also, every night when I put them to sleep and I hear them say, 25
As a single parent, you kind of have to be both Mom and Dad. What are some of the ways you fulfill those roles for your kids?
I think a lot of the traditional notions of what “moms” do versus what “dads” do aren’t realistic nowadays. I know some dads who have never changed a diaper because they think it’s “not their job.” That just doesn’t make sense to me. I never had a choice. From day one, I had to be both. And I have twins, so I’ve changed a lot of diapers! There are many people out there who have faced (or are facing) the same barriers that you did when it comes to starting a family. What would you like to say to them? Don’t give up. Keep going, and know that everything happens for a reason. Prejudice, judgement, legal blockades—I would be lying if I said I didn’t think about giving up sometimes. But I never did, and I would do it all again for them in a heartbeat. //
WITH VACCINATIONS ON THE RISE, THE END OF LOCKDOWN LIFE IS ON THE HORIZON. BUT THERE IS STILL SOME WORK TO DO BEFORE WE GET THERE.
GETTING BACK TO
NORMAL “When will things get back to normal?” With every month that passes under the lockdown cloud of COVID-19, I hear the same question. I wish I had the answer—but it’s more complicated than just getting a vaccine and picking a date on the calendar. Our outines—the way we eat, sleep, dress, move, work, travel, communicate—have all been altered in response to the pandemic.
Our internal compasses have definitely become a little “off.” I’m here to tell you: It’s OK. Unless you’re some kind of superhuman, feeling abnormal is the only genuine response to the collective trauma we have experienced over the past year. Anxiety, fear, stress, loss and pain have dominated our bodies and minds, leaving us shellshocked. The World Health Organization has even declared that the
pandemic has caused mass trauma on a scale larger than the Second World War, and anticipates the need for increased mental health resources for years to come. Processing our trauma will be a critical first step on the journey back to any true sense of normality. Here are a few ways we can begin to heal, rebuild and replenish ourselves in preparation for the light at the end of the COVID-19 tunnel. >>
Photography: Bille Chiasson
DOCTOR’S NOTE ACKNOWLEDGE NEGATIVE FEELINGS. I often see social media posts with notions like “Positive Vibes Only!” or “Be the Sunshine on a Cloudy Day” and I have to admit they concern me. Many people have been conditioned to “fight off ” negative feelings by supplanting them with forced feelings of positivity and this is not healthy. Suppressing your emotions, rather than processing them, can actually make you sick, mentally and physically. Research has shown that emotional repression can lead to decreased immune function, chronic stress, hypertension, cardiovascular disease, digestive issues, the list goes on. To deal with negative emotions more constructively, acknowledge that every now and again, you will have a bad day, and allow yourself to experience those feelings.
During that hour, try giving your emotions an outlet—write in a journal, or try drawing or painting, which has been shown to reduce cortisol (the stress hormone) in recent studies. Or if you’re musically inclined, play an instrument or sing a sad song. There’s a reason some of the best music ever written is melancholy—it’s cathartic! Then, when the hour is up, close the book and reward yourself with a soothing gesture like a good cup of tea, a hot bath or a walk around the block.
SEEK PROFESSIONAL HELP. While many have adopted productive coping strategies over the course of the pandemic, such as meditating, yoga and deep breathing, it’s important to make the distinction between therapeutic activities and actual therapy. A professional therapist or psychiatrist can give you actionable methods and tools to safely process your feelings, heal and move forward in your life. If you’re struggling with feelings of despair, hopelessness, depression or grief for longer than six months, it’s probably a good idea to seek out a registered psychotherapist or psychiatrist. We have a great network of providers if you are looking for someone. Just ask!
Tabitha Turner/ Unsplash
ADD SOME STRUCTURE. It’s easy to get stuck in a dark place if you don’t give yourself a proper “out” from your negative emotions. Give yourself a strict window of time to fully experience the feelings—an hour is more than enough.
BE HELPFUL. As we rebound from the emotional, social and financial impacts of the pandemic, we must also help one another— particularly those who have suffered the effects of COVID-19 more intensely: the essential workers, those who face socio-economic barriers, children and the elderly. The great thing about helping others is that it benefits both the giver and the receiver. Countless studies have documented the mental and physical health benefits of giving back, showing that charity work and philanthropy release dopamine (our feel-good hormones), lower blood pressure, reduce stress and help alleviate depression.
Anthony Tran/ Unsplash
The faster we acknowledge and address the inequities that have been magnified by the pandemic, the happier we will all be. There are many simple ways you can help those in need of support: • Deliver healthy meals to frontline workers • Petition your local government to provide paid sick leave for frontline workers • If you have the means, donate to one of the many organizations who provide services, programs and resources to children in need • Offer your services or donate to a crisis support line A little more patience, understanding and giving—to ourselves and each other— will help all of us reach the other side of the pandemic stronger and more brilliant than we were before. //
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LOVE JUDITH BORN TELLS US WHAT IT WAS LIKE RAISING OUR FAVOURITE DOCTOR. What was Dr. Born like as a young boy?
Trevor was a very adventurous little boy. He was always his own person, independent and fearless, which I think served him well as an athlete. He picked up sports very quickly, and once he set his mind to conquering a sport, that was it! When did he start showing an interest in medicine? He was already talking about being a surgeon when he was 10 years old. The fact that his father (Dr. Gunther Born) was a surgeon had a lot to do with that, as he was a huge influence on Trevor. Many of our friends were also physicians, so he had access to that world long before he started medical school. They would let him watch them in the operating room when he was in high school, which gave him a great head start in the medical field. What about him makes you the most proud? There are so many things that make me proud. He’s a world-class sailor and has won several titles, including a bronze medal at the PanAm games. He’s such an accomplished surgeon, with two successful practices. But above all, he’s a good person. He’s a very caring individual, and that’s part of what makes him such a great doctor. What do you think is the most important advice or life lesson you taught him? Well first of all, raising him (and our daughter Leslie) was very much a team effort. Gunther and I have always been extremely close, so when it comes to our family, we work together. I would say we tried to teach Trevor the importance of setting goals and sticking to them. And really, he never seemed to have a problem with that. He’s always had big goals, big dreams, and has created a full and wonderful life for himself. Being his mother, I’m perhaps a little biased, but I think he’s just an absolutely wonderful human being—and a great son. //
Photo by Jaclyn Locke
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