Kia Edwards is an education practitioner and human resources professional, as well as the founder and managing director of Champion Instructors Education & Training Consultants. At the onset of the pandemic, she observed her son’s educators, occupational therapists, and other professionals who oversee learning development struggle with distance learning planning.
All of his development services necessary to help him and his parents/caretakers navigate his autism diagnosis came to an abrupt halt. Edwards felt as if the disabled and special needs population was forgotten during this time and found that the country was lacking in the available technology resources or professionals (i.e. instructional designers or education technology professionals) to convert in-person learning/therapy into a virtual setting.
These collective experiences encouraged her to use her talents of instructional design management as an EDUpreneur. She went on to launch an education technology (#girlsinstem) business in the middle of a pandemic with two little boys under age four while wearing a slew of other hats. Edwards is a humanitarian, Poway Unified School District special education committee member, founder and co-author of July is Uterine Fibroid Awareness Month in California, social activist, and more.
Below is our Q&A with Edwards and her conversation with Not a Parenting Podcast above.
There is no real balance with career and family, but what would you say helps you do your best to achieve it?
I have sustained a Massage Envy prepaid account for roughly eight years. Self-care has to remain a constant, as it allows me to re-charge and put me first, if even for one-hour.
What kind of parent would you call yourself?
I am totally a helicopter mom. LOL! I hover over everything and everyone, but it’s because their safety and happiness are a priority. Outside of that, I will say I am imperfect, traditional with a modern swag. I am the first to apologize if I make a mistake which I think is important. I am currently teaching manners so pray for a sista.
When people ask “what do you do for a living,” what is your response?
I am the CEO and founder of Champion Instructors Education and Training where we create in-person and online learning for adult learners.
What gives you the motivation to be at the top of your game?
God, my ancestors, and my children are counting on me to change the world.
What is your favorite part about your home?
Good Lord, the bed.
What does self-care mean to you? How do you try to take care of your body?
I am recently going back to the gym since the height of the pandemic. It’s important for me to follow my friends on my Apple watch as their fitness goals motivate me to keep moving even if it’s just for 30 minutes. I recently did a soft Whole30 program. While I didn’t take the program on fully, I learned new ways to enjoy alternative food choices. Food considerations and working out are ways I am taking care of my mind and body.
How do you address your own mental health?
I often use my Calm App where I can listen to condensed affirmation recordings. Additionally, I have the Massage Envy account that deducts monthly fees to cover a massage, facial, or full body stretch. If I don’t use the prepaid massage, it just saves in my account adding extra time (for example instead of a 60-min, I can add two prepaids together for a longer session) and I can gift them to friends and family. This has come in handy when I’ve wanted to send self care love to someone who needs it.
Hubby and I also attend ongoing marriage counseling sessions. It helps us navigate marriage, communication, and all the unknowns of parenting an autistic child. We are grateful for these sessions and I think it’s important to normalize counseling especially for those whose communities typically frown upon seeking wise counsel outside of just prayer and church.
Does spirituality play a role in your life? If yes, please elaborate.
Absolutely. I consider myself to be a woman of faith. While I don’t preach one has to be a specific religion, I value believing in a higher power bigger than my own thoughts and decisions. I don’t always know why the journey presents itself a certain way, but I am constantly working on trusting my faith and believing all things will work out in my favor. This is constant work, but it’s the goal to always stay in that space.