Today, I'm delighted to share this episode with a friend and an amazing woman in my life. I'm so inspired by Amanda and the valuable work she is doing.
Amanda Rootsey is an Eco-Model, Gentle Living Coach and a passionate educator. She spent many years as a fashion model working in Australia and Europe for labels such as Salvatore Ferragamo, Myer, Alex Perry and Cartier, to name but a few. After a 2-year battle with cancer, she decided to settle on the beautiful Sunshine Coast in Australia.
Being diagnosed with Hodgkin's Lymphoma certainly changed her perspective on life and inspired her to go vegan, start meditating, enjoy each moment and encourage others to find their balance and joy in life. She blogs about simple living, natural beauty, wellness, eco-fashion and more. Amanda presents a fresh and inspiring take on personal development training in her business, Shine from Within. With a strong focus on self-love, compassion for others and healthy living, her zest for life and positive but yet calming attitude is infectious. Nothing gives her greater pleasures than to see her students shine bright and realise their full potential. Still modelling, she now works exclusively with eco-friendly and ethical brands who share her values often with more than an ambassadorship focus. You can find her at http://www.amandarootsey.com.au/ or http://shinefromwithin.com.au/.
Please share a little bit about your personal background and whether you’ve not had a child due to personal choice or circumstance.
Amanda was diagnosed with cancer when she was 24 and underwent chemotherapy and radiation treatments, as well as natural therapies. Due to the harshness of the chemotherapy treatment she was informed that there’s an 85% chance that she’ll never be able to have children naturally.
Did you have a driving desire to have a child?
Amanda has gone within to explore the answer to this question in the last year or so. The doctors haven’t given her any definitive answers. They’re not sure if she is also going through early menopause. Each person's body is so different and individual, so it’s hard to generalise.
Is early menopause the result of the treatment?
Amanda believes that is the case. However, every so often she does still receive her period. The body is amazing in trying to heal itself. Her periods had stopped but due to her healthy regimen of eating healthily and meditation they have returned.
How did you feel when you were told that you couldn’t have a child, especially when you were quite young?
Amanda is only 30 years old. The thought of not being able to have a child was upsetting. The reality of having the choice taken away is difficult to deal with.
Did this situation stir up many feelings? Did you then feel like you might have wanted a child?
Amanda confirmed it certainly did bring up those feelings. That’s pretty much a normal response. However, she is philosophical and always come back to “whatever is meant to be, will be” and having the faith that went with that. She believes in having the faith and trust that your life is unfolding the way it was meant to. Amanda has noticed that some women seem pre-destined to have a child and long for it. "We, as women shouldn’t fall for the stereotypes placed by our culture. Many women feel guilty for not wanting to have children. It’s still quite taboo and such a personal topic."
Did you feel any pressure from your family about having a child?
Amanda's cancer treatment has inadvertently provided a reason to cut these conversations short. It's more clear cut to have as a reason rather than saying you possibly do not want to have children. It is easier and less confronting.
How did the work with "Shine From Within" come about?
The transition from being a girl to a woman is such an important time in our lives. Amanda loves modelling and never thought that she would be teaching others. However, after going through her ordeal health-wise, she learned how important it is for us to take good care of our health and look after ourselves. "We’ve always been pushed to achieve and succeed in life." After going through that experience Amanda felt the need to share the message of taking care of our bodies and living healthy with young women.
Did you work as a model before you started teaching? Was modeling something that you focused on intentionally?
Amanda undertook a modelling training course and was also studying drama at school. She started to teach other young girls, whilst working as a model.
When you were diagnosed with cancer you were working as a model. When did you decide that you were only going to represent eco-conscious brands?
After her illness, Amanda didn’t think she continue modeling at all. She started meditating and a healthy lifestyle. Then she started to work with businesses who approached her who were eco-friendly and ethical. That’s where eco-modelling came about. “Life can change in an instant. We need to take care of ourselves and others around us.”
One of the myths in our society is that we are made to pro-create. The fact is that we are using up the earth’s resources extremely rapidly and having a huge impact. It’s easy to take it all for granted but we need to be aware of our carbon footprint. “The richest 20% in the world are producing 80% of the wastage and are responsible for most of the consumption.”
What are your thoughts around this topic? Should people consider how many children they are having?
There are plenty of children in the world who need love and care. Amanda feels that it’s beautiful when people provide that help for children who are already here. The environmental impact of people’s decisions to have children should enter their thoughts. However, that’s not the reality.
What would you love to leave the world as your legacy?
Amanda feels that it all comes back to being gentle with yourself, others and the earth.
What do you feel are the major benefits in not having children?
Amanda is a Gentle Living Coach for women who want to bring more peace and happiness into their lives. Amanda is also wonderful mentor to teenage girls and if you have a daughter, I wholeheartedly recommend you check out her workshops. You can find out more about Amanda and her work at http://www.amandarootsey.com.au/ or http://shinefromwithin.com.au/.