It's been one week since I was picked up curbside by Kia, one of the Mom 2 major sponsors, alongside other nervous mamas attending our first conference. One week since I set foot in the lobby of the sprawling, decadent, gorgeous Ritz Carlton Grande Lakes in Orlando, Florida. One week since I overcame my fear of knowing no one and seized the opportunity to meet as many amazing people as I could. My life changed last week in ways I can't even explain but I want to take a minute to try.
Mom 2.0 Summit was the first conference I attended since starting out on my own as an entrepreneur almost two years ago. I had new business cards printed, stood in front of my closet for three days trying to figure out what to pack and gave myself daily pep talks on how to introduce myself. Here's the thing - while I was prepared, I needed none of that. None of that worry about what if I didn't have my cards on me? Or what if my dress is too bright? Or what if I stammer when I'm chatting up a super cool mom who's been doing this longer than I have? I needed none of that worry because none of that happened.
Mom 2.0 set the bar so high that I don't think any other conference experience can rival it. I dare you to try!
It's taken me one week to decompress and process my thoughts. To sift through notes and business cards although I imagine it will be fresh in my mind for a while. I do know this - I can't wait until next year!
I've had people ask me what my favorite part of the conference was and immediately all kinds of memories come flooding into my brain... there are so many...Perhaps my favorite was:
Meeting Gabby Bernstein in the ladies room before she gave her amazing keynote speech. Chatting with her like we're friends and helping her pin her top closed as to not expose her bra? Requisite selfie below. And buy her book "The Universe Has Your Back". Seriously. Get it.
Or maybe it was sitting next to Michele Ferreri at breakfast, chatting about how much we (weren't) missing our kids and then realizing that I follow her on Instagram and love her insane coolness.
Or was it when on the second night the TODAY Parenting Team took it's contributors (I'm in that super fun group) to Universal Studios for a VIP dinner, a ride on the Jimmy Fallon experience and dessert in Diagon Alley after the park was closed to tourists.
How about when I ran into Mollie at the Sunfest Party? We have a mutual great friend from Brooklyn - small world for sure. New friendship, absolutely!
Could it be Meeting Alice Chase for the first time while we were in a seminar and me exclaiming to her how much I love following her adventures with her family resulting in me doing a video for her o the spot?
What about participating in the Dove workshops? That was an amazing experience. Spending time with the girls from The Girls and Boys Clubs was so inspiring. We talked about the Dove #RealBeauty campaign and the definition of what it meant to the girls. To say I was impressed is an understatement. The self confidence and poise that these young ladies exuded was beyond anything I expected. Look out world - these ladies are gonna rule it!!
Talking books with Nicola Yoon, the author of "Everything, Everything" (which is now a major motion picture coming out on Friday - go see it), and her allowing me to actually say the words "I wrote a book" without laughing, but instead saying, "that's amazing, I can't wait to read it." I think my brain exploded after that conversation!
But seriously I truly can't find one instance in particular because THE WHOLE THING was my favorite. So I'll say this - my favorite part of Mom 2.0 was without a doubt meeting all of the amazingly talented, inspiring, bold and gorgeous on the inside and out people who attended this conference. Not once did I feel like I didn't belong. Not once did I not feel included. I thank you for creating a space where women (and men too!) are celebrated and encouraged to create content, to share stories and to empower one another. This feeling is not going away anytime soon, I'm sure of that.
PS: One thing I would change? I would love to have an extra day - one built without content but for attendees to lay around the pool and get to know one another. A chill day if you will. Who's in for staying an extra day next year?? I am!
The countdown is on!!