Ahhhh Kourtney - why do I relate to you so much? Why do I feel a little protective, even almost pitying of you upon the launch of your new lifestyle - what is it, a brand? Poosh - named for your daughter but also making use of the famous billion-dollar company double OOs (and all the double entendres they create) that apparently persuaded Gwyneth to go for Goop as a name for her very similar brand. They are accentuated in the branding, as are your own double rounded curves. But I love that about the whole brand Kardashian generally; if it could be my job to have great tits and ass and have them photographed by my hairdresser/best friend’s husband, you know I would be living that life. You campaign for label transparency and better government regulation of beauty products, but have kept (we think?) your breast implants (no hate - but what’s really important to you?). You’re often mean to your mom on the unbelievably successful KUWTK, but claim motherhood as one of your defining personas. You claim to hate your fame and the show, but not enough of course to walk away (just enough to serve Kim a cease and desist order over your appearance in her app - anyone remember that?). You are a mass of contradictions and sometimes you seem like a real bitch, but then doesn’t that just put her in great company?
I feel for Kourtney because, even as she has launched this guide to “living your best life” (and hey, isn’t she?), you can just feel she’s not fully into it. Part of the Kardashian Kirkus, Kourt’s been along for the ride without ever really making it her own, or even seeming to fully enjoy it. There is something precious about Kourtney - fragile under her resting (and active!) bitch face, and maybe a little shy even after a decade plus in front of the camera. In my time off grid, I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about authenticity, that buzz word that just won’t go away, and what the deeper implications of living authentically truly are. I’ve been contemplating this while raising three beings not yet too divorced from their authentic selves, and considering how I can reconnect to my authentic self in a way that integrates everything I’ve learned in my journey from their state to where I am now.
Is that what Poosh is meant to be? At first glances, this is a stretch. The first offerings of Poosh are predictable, maybe even recycled from her now defunct app. No real input from Kourt here - just the musings of a team of ghostwriters carefully selecting which gluten-free snacks they could redirect to within her target demographic’s budget. But then, a piece on co-sleeping. This was the only post to immediately grab my attention and it gave a thoughtful and sweet account of how Kourt and Scott coslept with each of their children - the first by accident, the second intentionally and the third hell no! As eldest sister, Kourt wasn’t throwing her first $500k birthday parties; she was getting excited by the possibility of a clothing collaboration with Sears and sharing her move into a pest-infested house with the world on KUWTK. She was really doing it, albeit in an incredibly privileged way and on camera, but the realness was there and it came through again in this post.
I also relate to Kourt because, like me, she has three children and because hers are mostly quite a bit older than mine, watching her gives me a sense of things to come. Which I suppose makes her life, in all its weird ways, especially aspirational to me. It also means that, as embarrassing as this is to admit, I see a lot of myself in her as a person too. The indecision: the desire to be a fully conscious and dedicated mother at war with the eldest child's over-achieving thirst for success, even when her heart’s not really in it. A few years ago, I too launched a wellness website with a similar slant - balanced but effective lifestyle practices, tools, recipes, for vibrant, beautiful, healthy living. I planted the seed, but it didn’t bloom - I was distracted by things that ultimately didn’t matter, simultaneously producing a podcast that was great fun but didn’t flow well editing-wise, and then incapacitated by my second pregnancy (twins - ugh). In the time I’ve taken away, I’ve really come to understand the power of the authentic voice. This process was much more involved than simply reading Brene Brown’s books (fabulous as they are) and seeing everyone under the sun post about it on social media. It has taken (and is taking) deep work in connecting to who I really am, understanding my past and my wounds and forgiving myself and others along the way, embracing my shadow and surrendering to what I cannot control. It’s still a work in progress, and some days I despair that it will never be over. But mostly I’m grateful that I had the time to get perspective on who the real me might be, and the importance of channeling her above anything else when I put myself out there in the world. Kourt, I feel, still has some walls up, and you can sense this in Poosh.
Poosh brought all this up for me, even as it made me feel a little embarrassed for Kourt. It’s ok though; I still have a soft spot for her, and I think that if she (or let’s face it, Kris) sticks with it, they will find their way to vulnerability, authenticity and therefore success. There’s no one for second acts like any of the Kardashians, and watching Kourt try again after her app has made me feel ready to wade back into the fray too. Even if it’s not perfect, it doesn’t matter. - as long as my voice is more in line with my authentic self and I’m exploring really lights me up (to use the language of the teachings that have helped me most), I know I’ll be on the right track.