Bernadette Durkee aka MudHoneyy knew she would be a great mom but admits "I never really knew I wanted kids." This modest, REAL and beautiful country lover, talks about loss, growing up & the importance of family.
I’m Bernadette. I’m a freelance makeup artist. I’m 30 years old, and have got myself two little ones. Dolly whose 3 and Porter whose 6 months old. I’m married to a man I’ve been friends with since 7th grade and we live in San Diego, Ca.
Did you always want kids? How did you feel about kids, before Kids?
No way, I never really knew I wanted kids. I remember saying something to my husband (then boyfriend) along the lines of “I don’t think having kids will be for us” I think deep down I always knew I’d make a great mom but it wasn’t “cool” at the time to admit we wanted kids. None of my friends had babies, and everyone I hung around was in full blown party mode. Kids? No, kids would make going out and motorcycle events a real problem. Haha funny how our priorities change, I think for the better.
"And of course the moment you get to wrap your arms around your baby and hold them to your chest -- Ugh crying -- that’s the best feeling in the world."
Tell us about finding out you were pregnant.
Pretty crazy story we had JUST gotten married after being together for like 10 years. We were actually on our honeymoon which was a cruise to Mexico. I’ve never really had an issue with seasickness but for some reason on this trip I was super seasick and had completely lost my appetite for food and for drink. I didn’t want to eat? I knew something was up. Right when we got home I took a pregnancy test. I had to text a picture of it to my sister just to confirm I was seeing straight. It was positive, and a rush of excitement and nervousness rushed all over me. My second pregnancy was even more emotional than the first. We had just lost our brother (my brother-in-law) everyone in my family was so heartbroken. I found out I was pregnant and did the math we figured out we got pregnant just days after losing our brother. Once we knew we were having a boy their was no doubt in my mind he was a really special gift at a time we all really needed something to be happy about.
"If you want to be the best parents you can be, stop partying. Of Course it sounds rad to down a few glasses of wine or beer after a hard day with the kids, but to be real EVERYDAY IS HARD."
What is the most stand out memory from labor or delivery?
There is nothing better than having your husband who said he wanted to wait outside holding your hand and leg saying “PUSH PUSH PUSH YOU GOT THIS BABE!!! And of course the moment you get to wrap your arms around your baby and hold them to your chest. Ugh crying- that’s the best feeling in the world.
What is the biggest life change since you have had kids?
Our biggest life change since having kids has to be quitting drinking, smoking, and partying. We didn’t fully commit to this lifestyle until after having Porter. It’s been the best thing for our family. We want to be good examples for the babes and to be honest addiction runs in both our families. We decided it wasn’t worth it anymore- if you want to be the best parents you can be, stop partying. Of course it sounds rad to down a few glasses of wine or beer after a hard day with the kids, but to be real everyday is hard. And if you rely on alcohol or anything else to ease the stress you’ll eventually become addicted to it. I’m not trying to numb myself, I'm living and loving through parenthood. I’m really feeling it, and it’s magic.
What is a typical weekday like for your family?
I’m a freelance makeup artist so when I’m not booked on a job I’m a stay at home mom. Husband goes to work doing construction. We wake up, change diapers change clothes, then coffee. A typical day is doing my best to get my kids outside, Dolly has to be outside most of the day. She’s my little nature baby. Her favorite thing is interacting with animals, plants, sticks, water and bugs. We have a really cool children’s museum here I take the kids to. Or if we stay home we usually hang outside with the chickens and the dogs. Then naps yay! We sit down to dinner every night. I usually cook- kids asleep by 7:30.
What is your favorite thing to do for yourself?
Getting my nails done and doing my own makeup, also going for a solo drive. Thrifting makes me happy, and tattoos too!
Do you make 'Me' time a priority?
No, of course not. My priority is my kids, but I do try and have a balance of me time and somewhat of a social life too. I’ve got the most amazing women in my circle. They inspire me and help me reset. Having time with them feeds my soul. Liliana, Kat, Julia, Carissa, Christina, Nicole I’m talking about you babes!
What influences your fashion and beauty choices?
I don’t really consider my self to be fashionable. So it always blows my mind when I get sweet dm’s from someone saying I inspire the way they dress. If I had to say what inspires my look, I'd have to say the 1970s early 1980’s and western fashion. I like to dress simple - I love dresses paired with a vintage pair of cowboy boots, and a hat. I lived in black for so long and I’m done with it. If it’s a casual day I’m usually in jeans and an old bandit brand tee. My beauty routine is always changing but I’m all about letting your natural features shine!
What is one thing you wish you could tell your younger self - the pre-kid self?
DON’T GROW UP SO FAST, THERES NO TURNING BACK
How is it balancing work life & mom life?
It's great -- I work when I can, and try to remember they’re only little for so long. I stay at home with them way more than I work. I’m lucky to have a husband who
makes that possible. I love what I do. I have the best job getting to do makeup for a living, being surrounded by creative people. It’s awesome.
Best advice you could give fellow moms trying to balance it all.
You’re not alone if you’re feeling overwhelmed. It helps to find other moms like you, other moms with the same number of kids. I find that even though a lot of my friends have a baby, no one gets me like a mom with two around the same ages as mine. Also, don’t feed into the perfect mommyhood instagram accounts, it’s bullshit. Unfollow them.
Social media can really connect us as mothers, but can also make us feel like we’re failing compared to everyone else. I love her honesty about unfollowing the “perfect” accounts – it really does make a difference! Loved the interview!
How inspiring! Beautifully said, and I LOVE your raw and brutalistic approach with honesty! I LOVE that you speak with the sacrifice of LOVE and selflessness, and I really LOVED the photos too! I’m Applauding and smiling proudly, dear Bernadette, and I LOVE you!