In Conversation with Ella McCabe Barton
Introducing the Milk Label Journal, sharing stories that celebrate life: The beautiful and the messy. For our latest journal, we spoke to Ella McCabe Barton, mother to Frida and wife to Italian husband Marcello, about their heartfelt home in Byron Bay, Australia.
Photography by Lisa Sorgini
At our first encounter with Ella through mutual friends, it was obvious that as a mother she radiates calm and presence with her daughter, Frida. Sharing stories about motherhood and everything it entails, we reached out to Ella to feature in our first Milk campaign shoot. Naturally, Ella became one of the first Mothers of Milk conversations on the Milk journal.
Ella, who is originally British, came to Australia on holiday where she met her husband, Marcello, and created a beautiful family with Frida who is two years old and has one more on the way. We spoke to Ella about some of the rituals and rhythms of her home and family life, and asked her a little bit bout her baby-feeding journey so far.
Can you tell us a little bit about who you share your home with?
"My home is shared with my wonderful husband and our two year old daughter Frida."
What are some of the rituals and rhythms of your home and family life?
"Food! Life revolves around food in our house (my husband is Italian) and we very much celebrate eating delicious food and gathering as a family or with our friends. No matter how busy we are, we always eat together and make time to sit down and connect over a meal."
What can you tell us about your baby-feeding journey so far?
"I was lucky enough to be able to breastfeed Frida on demand for 18 months and it felt like such a privilege to be able to provide for her in this way. Towards the end of our feeding journey, I became very depleted and it was no longer serving either of us. Stopping was actually a much easier process than I had envisioned and a couple of days away was all that was needed for a smooth transition."
What makes you feel supported and safe as a woman/as a mother?
"The most important thing for me is prioritising time alone, time to connect with myself and nourish myself. Having time alone allows me to be the best version of myself and to be fully present with my family."
Are there any books, films, podcasts or artworks that depict aspects of parenthood that you feel connected to?
"It is difficult to pinpoint exactly, however I feel parenthood is such a unique experience and I often encounter metaphors that depict moments with impeccable timing. Right now I feel as though we are engaged in a dance, a dance between two souls. Sometimes we are perfectly in sync with each other and at other times the choreography needs fine tuning."
Can you share with us some of the joys and some of the challenges of parenthood that you’re experiencing at the moment?
"Oh the joys are endless! And it gets better as Frida expresses herself more and more with language. I absolutely love experiencing life through fresh eyes and watching her thrive. She has recently turned two and she is wanting to take the helm of her own experiences. It is wonderful and also challenging as we navigate the balance of empowerment and discipline."
Would you share the story of a tender moment with us?
"There have been so many since Frida came into our life. I think the most prominent was introducing Frida to our families after being separated for two years. Those moments and the abundance of love, I will hold onto forever."
What does Community mean to you?
"A healthy sense of belonging."
What gives you comfort?
"The feeling of love, whether that be giving or receiving."
What are the dreams for the season ahead?
"A soft transition from a mother of one, into a mother of two."