Wednesday, 8 May 2013

HOW SHE DOES IT: Laura Butler dishes on family dynamics, marriage, and her undying devotion for her homeland

BLOOMS DAY: Butler talks about her love of country and family.

Having recently taken over one of the most scrutinized jobs in the Jamaican social-beauty realm: that of franchise-holder of the closely watched Miss Jamaica World pageant, Laura Butler sat down with TALLAWAH for an utterly candid and unbridled chat to discuss her "mammoth" new role on a bright Tuesday morning in the lobby of New Kingston's Pegasus Hotel. Below, the second half of our conversation:  

TALLAWAH: I've heard from reliable sources that motherhood can be quite the demanding job. Are you enjoying the experience? 
Butler: My little girl, Isabella, is four, and she is my pride-and-joy. She's such a wonderful child, as well, and me and her father believe very strongly in giving her a firm foundation. Also support of family is key. I have my mother, who has taught me that no matter how old you are or how old your child is, you're still a mother. When I'm exhausted, it's my mother who will make me that chicken soup or something, to nurse me. I love being a mom. 

And you hail from a large family, as well... 
Yes, I come from a big family, and they are concerned for me because I have taken on a mammoth task. But they understand what drives me. And I have sat with my little girl, and I negotiated with her and told her that if you just allow Mommy to get through this very challenging and time-consuming time, I will make it up to you. So we'll have our little movie nights and these little things. We do a lot of things together, and every day I hug her and give her plenty kisses. She's a solid little girl. 

So do you have time for dating? 
What?! (Laughs). The role of balancing your career and being a parent demands a lot of time, patience and hard work. So in terms of getting much done outside of that is not easy. But I do have my friends, and I do try to spend as much time with them as possible. But, of course, sacrifices are meant to be made. 

Where do you stand on the institution of marriage? 
I believe in marriage. People always talk about wanting an independent woman, and initially it sounds good. But marriages take a lot of work, relationships take a lot of work. So I do believe in marriage, but I've come to realize that we each have one life to live. And as long as you keep a relationship with that Higher Being, and you ask for guidance, you'll be fine because life is a journey. 

I understand that you have lived outside of Jamaica... 
Yes, we went away. We left Jamaica a few times, actually. We went to Barbados, and then we left and went to the States, and we came back. There's something magical about my country. Every time I leave, something pulls me back to Jamaica. The fact that my fruit lady can roast my breadfruit and peel it for me, says something wonderful. We can feed off the land. I am very passionate about purchasing only local produce. And I think that as Jamaicans, and as individuals, we have a role to play in terms of promoting our brand. Not just talk but act. 

>> Read more: Here's Part 1 of our interview with Laura Butler

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