Rodger, Rachel, and their new son Skyler. Photo from Rachelzoe.com.
I just learned that celebrity stylist Rachel Zoe and her husband Rodger Berman welcomed their son Skyler Morrison Berman on March 24. I don’t know how I missed this, although I’ve been so busy lately I haven’t been watching TV at all, nor reading as many blogs or online news sites as I usually do. Congratulations Rachel & Rodger!
I’ve enjoyed all three seasons of The Rachel Zoe Project, not just for the clothes and jewelry but for a theme I wasn’t even expecting—the pressure to have a baby before it’s too late.
Rachel’s husband, parents, and sister were all giving her the hard sell on having a baby during Season 3. A telling moment regarding Rachel’s feelings on motherhood was when her sister explained that if Rachel became a mother, she would have to let fashion take a backseat in order to do things like have playdates with children of her mommy friends. Rachel actually recoiled and I understood her dismay. It seems there is everything to put you off having children—the crying (yours and the baby’s), the poo diapers, the wrecked sleep—and that’s just the stuff you know about ahead of time. I’m sure Rachel was thinking, I have to give up Paris Fashion Week for a playdate? What?
Rodger talked about his frustration in wanting Rachel to slow down and start a family with him. As much as I sympathized, I also feel it’s so easy for a man to say that, but at the end of the day it’s the woman who has to go through pregnancy, labor and delivery. It’s the woman who ends up with sore boobs bigger than her head that are leaking milk all over the place, and it’s the woman baby wants 24/7 after he comes into the world. It’s hard to have a business and a child unless you have a ton of help, and even then, something’s got to give. And yet I also understood Rodger’s point of view that Rachel was 38, and at the fast pace they were living, 20 years could go by, your time to have kids is over, and you may end up feeling like you missed out on something that could’ve been wonderful.
So you just have to go for it, which Rachel and Rodger did. Good for them.
Alternating with her ambivalence on motherhood was Rachel’s desire to give birth wearing Chanel, which made me laugh. I wanted to tell her, Don’t do it! Childbirth is such a messy business, you’ll end up ruining a perfectly beautiful dress! Do what I did and wear a nice pair of earrings. You’ll suddenly have an heirloom worth passing along to your child someday, and you don’t have to worry about wrecking your own clothes. That’s what hospital gowns are for.
My Mikimoto pearl stud earrings I wore when giving birth to each of my children and when I ran both of my marathons.
I hope Rachel’s new baby compels her and Rodger to step away from the crazy world of fashion for now and just revel in their little family and the kinds of things holding your new son in your arms can give you that nothing else in the world can—wonder, awe, gratitude. Rachel twittered that her baby boy is everything. I remember that feeling too when I looked at my son—so tiny, so precious, so vulnerable and sweet.
My son, two weeks old, November 2002.
When my now 8-year old son is rolling his eyes at me or cracking himself up reading cuss words written on the subway or I have to practically sit on him to get him to do his homework, I try to look at a picture of him as an infant. Any of them will do, but this one is particularly sweet. It helps to center me as a parent and I fall in love with him all over again. At least long enough to get through another day.