Women have come a long way in society and culture. Long ago, most women were confined to the household and stayed as homemakers throughout their lives. These days, that lifestyle is less common, and more working moms are being celebrated for carving a career for themselves whilst juggling the responsibilities of a mother. Just look at the trend of Insta-moms like the likes of Jessica Alba, Rosie Huntington, and Chriselle Lim. Always on the go with a bustling career, and when all’s said and done, they go home and become warm, affectionate mothers.
Claradevi, or usually known by her Instagram handle @lucedaleco, is on her way to becoming a super mom. Currently 7 months pregnant, she’s ready to pop and add another number to the population census. Considered one of the original bloggers in Indonesia, followers have watched her cruise through her career and her progression into adulthood, becoming a wife, and now becoming a mother.
Having started her online career in 2007, Claradevi is used to juggling different jobs in one go. She started her blog during her university years, then continued blogging while working at a Tokyo-based digital agency. Since she started blogging, she’s been working on various different projects focused on content creation while travelling here and there. In 2016, she took a dive into entrepreneurship and started her own business, a contemporary, Indonesian-inspired fashion brand called Senandung, and an Indonesian restaurant in Jogja called RM Demangan.
“Currently they are both running independently under separate managements, so it has allowed me to focus on my other company called Remark. It’s a creative agency founded by my partner, Rivan Hamdani, and I joined last year as co-founder and creative director.” This year, she’s also an ambassador for Natasha Skincare, which is something she’s really excited about since it gives her space to learn more about her own skin and how she can be more involved in the positive narrative on beauty in general.
Perhaps her hardworking attitude stemmed from her own struggles earlier on in life. During her high school years, her family went through a period of financial difficulty after her father’s business got swindled and they had to struggle to reach a point where they could be safe again. She’s worked hard since then, trying to create and experience a lot of creative courses that she found helpful in the future, and built a strong bond with her family along the way. “I think the downturn truly shaped me into enjoying life in a meaningful, and more spiritual way; a perspective that has enriched me all these years. By not having everything, I can truly find joy amongst even the smallest, insignificant detail in many things. I don’t regret a thing. I see my life path and the decisions I made as blessings, and somehow these perspectives are the main fuel behind my approach to contentment. I truly feel deeply thankful of that turning point”.
Living between cities and countries have become somewhat natural for the soon-to-be mom. These days she flies between Jakarta and Jogja where she has family and conducts business at. “I consider both cities as my home. It’s just after the wedding that I started to be drawn more and more to Jogja, into my Javanese roots and culture, that I naturally chose to reduce my visit to Jakarta and settle into a more regular lifestyle in Jogja.” In the art city, where there’s a clear absence of Jakarta’s notorious traffic, she has more than enough time to hold back to back meetings, while still having more than enough time to admire the poetic moments of the town. “I guess I’ve officially transmitted myself into a lifestyle that is meaningful and healthy here in Jogja, with consecutive monthly visits to Jakarta. It creates a balance that I absolutely feel content about.”
With her upcoming birth, she feels a deeper connection with her beliefs. “It enhances everything that I’ve believed before: that I am, and must be kind to my own body. That life is good and understanding. That I am capable of loving, and loving more. That everything has its own timing and we must embrace it genuinely.” So far the pregnancy has been a blessing to her, and she’s utterly thankful because it felt like a strong reminder to her to do more kindness towards the people in her vicinity.
On her pregnancy experience and anticipating its harder moments, Claradevi believes that carrying a baby should be treated with positive energy from the beginning. “Mostly, there were experiences worth learning and worth the effort. The fact that I can get pregnant is already a magical blessing to be forever thankful for.” She did prepare herself by reading books and conversing with friends and family members who are mothers. “I tell myself that I am capable of doing this, to remain as natural as can be, and to be as strong as it requires me to be”.
Her tips for other mothers going through the same journey is to be calm. “I spent many days quietly, learning to soak the energy from my surroundings into emotions that I found empowering. The last thing I need is for myself to panic or become frustrated in dealing with the possibility of challenges.” It also helped that she was able to absorb her husband’s calm energy. From generation to generation, she was also advised by her mother and mother-in-law, to “remember to stay being you, beside being a mother”.
Many times, the role of a mother can be incredibly overwhelming and drown out the person you once were. Claradevi has seen friends and colleagues lose themselves in their new role of being a wife or mother and being very stressed out over change. “We don’t have to pick one; we can be all! A wife, a mother, and a woman of our own”.
While her body and life changes, one thing that has remained constant is her wardrobe. She had always favored loose separates and waistless dresses, but with added attention to comfort and safety these days. On her 3 picks every expecting moms should have in their closets, Claradevi always opts for a beautiful dress that can be worn more than once. “As long as it’s loose and makes you feel beautiful.” She also suggests having dark colored, pregnancy-friendly pants that are ankle length and structured. “It can really give us an ego-boost, like a lady boss.” Lastly, her go to maternity staple is lots of knitted sweaters. Versatility at its best, sweaters can be paired with a skirt, or if the bump is bigger, they look great paired with culottes or loose trousers. “They’re simply comfortable and super cozy. They’re like hugs for your pregnant body”.
These days, Claradevi is most excited about her upcoming book. “In between my wedding and pregnancy, the book took such a long process to finish. Now it’s reaching the final phase and I’m ecstatic. Nervous, but mostly excited!” In a year’s time, she’ll have a baby on her lap and she hopes her book will already be out long before then. Wherever her journey takes her, we’re mostly excited for her potential in greatness. We hope that she’ll join the ranks of women who continue to prove that women can have it all.
What is a regular day like for you?
Morning errands at home with my dogs, and breakfast with my husband. Afterwards it’s a different combination of work, from visiting properties, going to the office, meeting new clients, creating content for my social media, and a quiet afternoon to write in my studio. If I’m in Jogja, I’ll go take an afternoon shower before sunset time. Evenings are usually spent with my husband filled with post-office conversations, dinner, reading books while snacking, and more playtime with our dogs. Usually we’ll watch Netflix until we fall asleep.
What is the atmosphere like in your house?
For me my current house is definitely warm and green, very green. My husband loves gardening and we are surrounded with plants, literally, all over the property. We both love vintage furniture and woods, so there are aspects of that here and there. Along with his Apple obsession, so tech-side there’s that. And in between my writings I will put my vinyl records on, with my melancholic playlist or the husband’s jazz numbers on the list. We both love spending time at home. I think the house has our laid-back feel all over the place!
What time do you usually wake up?
Not a morning person, really, so the earliest I would wake up is around 7 AM, if there’s no morning schedule on my calendar. I used to sleep around 2-3 AM, but ever since I’m pregnant, I mostly sleep before 12AM. It’s healthier that way!
What’s the first thing you read each morning?
Ideally? A book. But obviously nowadays I check my phone first, then followed by my journal or a real book if I’m lucky enough to have a few free hours before work.
What make-up / products do you use on a daily basis?
I was quite adventurous with my makeup and skincare before the pregnancy, but right after I got pregnant I just lost interest in any products. My skin was so sensitive during the first trimester of pregnancy, so I didn’t wear any skincare, and I simply wash my face with warm water every day. But then my interest sparked back again during the beginning of my second trimester, about the same time when I started working as an Ambassador for Natasha Skincare. Since then I regularly use their creams, makeup, face wash, and scheduled treatment at their clinic to keep myself fresh!
What items of clothing do you reach for when you don’t know what to wear?
A sweater and palazzo pants, or a loose vintage-looking dress.
What items do you never leave the house without?
My phone and wallet, a lip tint or balm. Then my tiny perfume and hand cream!
What is the last thing you do before you leave the house?
Hugging my dogs!
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Answers have been edited for length and clarity