In 2010 Mae, aged 8 was a very independent and centred girl with a strong sense of self. Now 16, Mae has learnt that no matter what happens in life she has an internal strength to find creative solutions to overcome. Her mother, Sophie Demenge, founder of advocates “communication, active listening, laughing and plenty of sleep to keep the family healthy”.

Original words…Mae aged 8, 2010

What do you want to be when you grow up? An architect, inventor, detective or artist.

What is your favorite famous person? Obama.

What makes you happy? My family.

What makes you sad? Not being with my family.

Your favorite book? All the Junie B Jones books by Barbara Park.

Your favorite film? The ones I make.

Your favorite holiday place? My lakehouse and cousins’ house in Hong Kong.

A city or a place that you would dream to visit? The moon.

Who chooses your clothes in the morning? Me and my mom.

Your favorite colors? Blue, yellow, purple and green.

Your favorite outfit? A comfy dress.

What is the piece your like the most from your wardrobe? My fur slippers.

The next item you would like to get? A laptop (I’m trying to save).

Parent & Child interview revisited…Mae aged 16, 2018

What do you feel when you read what you wrote 8 years ago? I laughed. I was so innocent. I’ve changed so much. I have grown into myself and have been able to form my own opinions through all kinds if life experiences wether mundane, everyday little obstacles or victories or month long summer camps have shaped me.

Do you still live in the same town? Yes, still in Brooklyn.

Do you have new ideas about the type of profession you want to embrace, or the things you want to do as an adult? Either a teacher or something to do with pottery. I can’t wait to be able to travel on my own, decorate my own house. I’m really excited about spending more time alone.

What are the books, films, events that made an impression on you lately? Woman’s march, anti-gun protest. Homegoing was a fascinating book about slavery. It’s hard to make sense of this world.

What is the most beautiful lesson you’ve learned from your experiences so far? I’ve learned that no matter what happens in life I have the internal strength to find creative solutions and overcome.

What skills do you have that are special? I’m really good at ceramics, I give really good advice, and I am a very good listener.

What do you think would make a change in the world? If people realized that their differences weren’t in fact differences more people would get along. And if people focus on the good, the authentic rather than headlines and the negative we could move forward in the right direction.


What are the main changes that happened in your life/ profession in the last 8 years? I am calmer, more centered, more picky about where and how I spend my energy. I have a better, deeper understanding of what matters to me and what my kids need.

What is the most precious message that you have you drawn from educating your child? They are educating me as much if not more as I’m educating them.

What makes you happy about your family? I’m happy that we are all pretty goofy and our family langage is humor. Trust runs deep. That makes me happy.

Has your child evolved the way you thought she would? Yes. It’s really fascinating to watch. When I read the short description from 9 years ago it’s the same girl only sharper, more confident, more defined, articulate. She is such a gentle force. A gift.

What is your recipe for happiness? Kindness and boundaries.

Your formula to keep the family healthy? Communication, active listening, laughing, good, local, in season, organic food and plenty of sleep.

A quote from an author/ thinker/ artist that you particularly like? There is a quote I love from a very dear friend of mine. I think about it often. Patience is the medal of the soul. And one from Einstein I love so much. It feels like a wink. Le hasard c’est Dieu qui se promène incognito. I like it better in French but in English it’s “Coincidence is God’s way of remaining anonymous”.

Original Parent & Child interview Sophie & Mae