Hello Mom Family! We ask you to join us in welcoming our new incoming Living Board President for 2022-2023 Zabrina Shkurti! We can’t wait to see all she will bring in her new position here at MOM.
Zabrina is a Florida native, part of the English Department at the University of South Florida as a PhD Student, and a mother of two boys. We celebrate the first official anniversary of the MOM Living Board and welcome her to the her new position as team member and President!
Q. What led you on your path toward becoming an educator, scholar and being interested in mother studies?
As cliche as it may seem, becoming a mother is what led me down this path! When I found out I was having twin boys, I started researching everything related to motherhood. As though the thought of having two new humans wasn’t overwhelming enough, the amount of literature, and conflicting literature at that, really ignited this scholarly interest. I wanted to know how women have been able to do it all through the years and as a literature scholar, I am particularly interested in how mothers are portrayed and treated in literature.
Q. How did you find out about the Museum of Motherhood?
I was attending the IAMAS conference in Fall 2021 and one of the speakers, Dr. Michelle Hughes Miller, brought up this organization. I immediately looked it up online and after perusing the site, I decided to reach out to see if there was anything I could do to assist with such an amazing mission.
Q. What made you want to work with MOM?
Mothers need a space to connect, reflect, and process with others who are familiar with the all-consuming pressures of motherhood. When I discovered this space, I quickly realized that this organization offered a community where women could do just that. For me, it is critical that mothers have the space to recognize their importance and their identities outside of motherhood as well and the residency program here gives women that chance to disconnect and focus on their own creations.
Q. What are your plans for your time here at the museum? Or what are you most excited about to do in your new role here as Living Board President at MOM?
I am most excited to be part of a community that offers support to other creatives and scholars–I hope that we can grow our community significantly so that the local area can come to recognize the important influence that the MOM organization can have not only locally, but globally as well.
Q. What has been your most memorable experience through your work so far? Or what are you most proud of in your line of work up until this point?
I think the most significant aspect of my work thus far is really identifying a need in the world to help mothers recognize their own self-worth outside of just being moms.
Q. What would you consider to be one of the most impactful moments of what you would consider to be the act of “mothering” in your life? Was it something you personally experienced or acted yourself?
Connecting with other mothers who are also struggling with this notion of perfecting motherhood has probably been most impactful for me as a mother–I quickly realized that there is no such thing as perfection. We are all just trying to do the best we can, our kids as well, and if we just allow for a little space and a lot of grace, we’ll be able to make the most of this life together. Adopting this mindset has helped me enjoy the messy imperfection a little more.
Q. What would you consider to be one of the most impactful moments in HERstory that has impacted who you are today?
Just really starting to embrace this idea that as a woman, even though I can do it all, it doesn’t mean I have to. It is okay to ask for help from others and in fact, knowing when to spend time dedicated to yourself is a sign of strength and dare I say, wisdom.
Q. What would you consider to be a fun fact about you that you would want to share with the MOM family?
I think I already gave this one away in an earlier question, but I am the mom of twin boys!
Q. What thoughts would you like to leave our MOM family with as you begin this new journey with them through your future work here at MOM?
Honestly, the mantra I have tried to adopt and stick to since becoming a mother is to never let go of my own dreams–just because I became a mother does not mean I need to sacrifice everything else that is important to me. Hopefully one day my kids will look at me and the work I have done and think to themselves, damn that woman is unstoppable.
Thank you for reading and getting to know our new Living Board President! Be sure to keep up with our blog and social media accounts as we prepare for Women’s History Month this March. Great things are to come!
Passionate about topics related to m/otherhood? Reproductive identities? Art? HERstory? Mothers Making Art? Mothers in Academia? Women and Gender Studies? Lifelong students can follow the Museum of Motherhood here, join our new ONLINE COMMUNITY, and we appreciate any and all support? Be sure to follow us on social media and check out our virtual storefront for merchandise!
If you have any inquiries regarding getting involved with MOM or are interested in being part of our Living Board, you can find out information about what being a board member entails under our About tab or clicking the link HERE: Living Museum Annual Volunteers – Join Us! – MUSEUM OF MOTHERHOOD (mommuseum.org)