I decided to be vulnerable in 2020

I have been really working hard in 2020. I would say that this has been the busiest two months of my life, plus I’m balancing being a mother to the most active, opinionated adorable soon to be two-year-old (who doesn’t like to sleep).

But I just wanted to share a few things that I’ve been working on:

– book. Yes, I’ve been working with an illustrator to do a book that I had to put on the backburner last year. It’s moving forward and I’m so excited.

– recruitment. We’ve been actively recruiting a lot of incredible people to join Maya’s Hope. It has been such an exciting time – from Board members, to volunteers who help out in the office, to interns… it’s been so busy.

No alt text provided for this image

 fundraising like crazy. So January and February are usually our “slow” months. It’s a time to clean up, do a lot of administrative tasks, but it’s just been one thing after the other… and a lot of emergency cases have been brought to our attention. We’ve been fundraising like crazy and utilizing different platforms. Social media has been amazing and we never know what to expect with each kid we fundraise for… but it’s been amazing. You all just make miracles happen.

– writing. I am trying to put in a lot of time into writing. I want to write more articles, or posts to get the word about Maya’s Hope. This is our 10th year, and I can feel it’s our big year. And so it’s important to get info out there…

– videos. I’m going to start doing videos myself about the organization. It’s been really hard as a new mother the past two years. Not gonna lie – I have probably not slept a full night in two years since my little one was born. And I just haven’t been able to do videos because I’ve just been too busy. I hate using the word “busy”, but when you have a spirited child and running a company, it’s just plain hard. But despite all of this, we’ve grown the past two years. So that’s the blessing in it all.

No alt text provided for this image

– vulnerable. In past years, I used to do the craziest things – like go around NYC with big posters promoting our kids… but since I’ve had a child, I just haven’t been able to do it. The first year, I brought my baby to the office. It was difficult. When I tell people that I spent 80% of my day lying on my back on the floor with a baby crawling on top of me or around me, they can’t believe it. Probably the hardest year of my life. I had felt alone, exhausted, hopeless at times, helpless… and because of those feelings, I started Mom Support groups at my office and at a church in SoHo, Moms of Old Saint Pat’s. I felt that if I couldn’t get support, I would create support groups.

No alt text provided for this image

– community. I work in a small office on 34th Street and we have volunteers coming in and out, but one of the things I changed was my work space. I work between Luminary and our office on 34th Street. Joining a space like Luminary allowed me to be inspired and be around other hard-working women committed to their business and personal goals. I wasn’t alone anymore in my office. I had a community to go to. And because of this, I want to build more community here in New York City.

That’s it for now. I felt compelled to write this because I saw something on Netflix about vulnerability. (I got Netflix in January – Masha the Bear is on it without commercials.) People don’t know my world. And I think it’s important to share about what is going on in my world as I support others – be it, children and families. Recently, I was able to help the mother of Prince Aegon because something was just “off” in her replies to me through our initial convos. If it was Maya of 2 years ago, I may have just said, “This mother isn’t interested in getting help.” And move on.

No alt text provided for this image

Instead, I dug further. I just thought, this mother needs help herself. She needs support. I knew what she was going through. And today, her child has hope for a bright future because I had the experience of becoming a mother – and that feeling of being alone, scared and hopeless. Prince Aegon got a life-saving surgery within a week of her first message with me.

Being a mother has opened my eyes to many things. It has made me better at my job – I multi-task more than. I don’t complain like I once may have, I have more empathy for others… and my commitment to helping these kids has grown exponentially.

I’m grateful for what life has thrown at me. Someone posted on my FB page recently why she didn’t understand why I’m still in New York City and why I continue to live here despite the struggles I face.

And I just said that I’m a New Yorker. But it’s more than that. I’m Maya, and I only get stronger by every obstacle I face.

Some people run from problems. I focus on the solutions. And despite the problems, I’m ready to face them head-on, come what may.

What are you doing in 2020 and what are you feeling vulnerable about?

Thanks for reading! <3


No alt text provided for this image

Maya Crauderueff is the President and Founder of Maya’s Hope, a NYC based charity committed to helping improve the lives of cutie pies around the world.