“I’m so grateful for my mom, for our families and for their good health.”
Jackie Doak, President of Dart Real Estate, introduces Crystal Silburn to most as “my right hand”. Indeed, Crystal – Jackie’s Executive Assistant – is essential to ensuring that Jackie’s day runs smoothly and that she is able to fit in all necessary appointments. This mirrors Crystal’s home life, where she is a busy mom of four to Zaria, 16, and four-year-old triplets Zoe, Christian and Isaiah.
Together with husband Shawn, Crystal keeps the household going, managing their complicated family calendar that is one of the few that could probably rival Jackie’s in complexity. “Jackie calls me Calendar Magician,” Crystal laughs, and that magic wand certainly needs to be cast at home to make sure the family of six get where they all need to go.
Raising Zaria from a previous relationship, Crystal reunited with her high school classmate Shawn when she was in her 20s and working at the front desk at Dart. Shawn was the FedEx delivery man who always remembered her from high school. “It surprised me because he was the popular one in high school and I was very quiet,” Crystal explains. “But when I asked him how he remembered me, he just said ‘when you’ve admired someone so long, you remember their name’ and that’s when I realised there could be something there!”
The two eventually married and decided to try for a child to round out their family. However, after some time passed without success, they were about to give up when Crystal discovered she was pregnant. They got the shock of their lives when they found out it was triplets! “Triplets run in Shawn’s family, but we didn’t know that until after we discovered we were having three babies,” Crystal recalls.
Delivered safely at 35 weeks, Zoe came first weighing 4lbs 9oz – headstrong and leading the pack, a personality which has stuck to this day – followed by Christian, the largest baby at 5lbs 2oz, and then Isaiah, who was the smallest at 4lbs 4oz, even though he has now outgrown both of his siblings! “Isaiah is very quiet and pensive; he takes a lot in and likes to observe,” Crystal says, “while Christian is the mommy’s boy – he’s very sensitive with a heart of gold, and loves to take care of people.” The triplets completed the family well, as Zaria dotes on little sister Zoe and all the siblings get along very well. “Zaria occasionally needs her space with such a loud household,” Crystal laughs, “but she is an amazing big sister and she’s my right hand at home.”
Crystal prefers to keep her home and work life fairly separate in order to find her version of ‘balance’. “Sometimes you need to let go of one to focus on the other,” she says. “And it’s just not always possible to think of both – when the kids are climbing all over me and grabbing toys!” Still, some work-life integration naturally happens on an island of this size. “With Jackie’s kids being younger than my oldest but older than my youngest, we often swap advice just to help refresh our memories and share ideas,” Crystal says. And Zaria interned at Dart through a programme set up by CIFEC last October, spending nearly seven months working in the Camana Bay Visitor Centre and the Dart Real Estate Marketing team. She now has an interest in exploring architecture in her future.
While Crystal loves her family’s Mother’s Day tradition of making handmade cards and going out together for a low-key lunch or dinner, she wouldn’t say no to a day at the spa. “Quiet time is always good!”
Much of her mothering strength has come from her own mom. “My mom is my ride-or-die, my sanity check, and the strongest woman I know. She’s struggled with severe back pain since not long after I was born but has never let it keep her down, and she still loves helping others and keeping us all in line …she’s the most selfless person I know. I’m so grateful for her, for our families and for their good health.”