When I started this blog, I had one goal. It was simple, and rather vague, and seemed incredibly easy because I had no idea so much time and effort went into creating a sustainable and worthwhile blog. I intended to use this space to document my journey through self-employment from the very beginning. I wanted to be able to use these pages to find like-minded people, and to share my struggles (and my successes) with the world, and to show people that it’s not that hard if you set your mind to it. And while all of these sounded like noble, lofty goals of mine – I also had hope for this space to help me find my way to the title of an entrepreneur.
And I think back, looking at the lessons I’ve learned and the struggles I’ve faced, wondering where I took a wrong turn. I got shy, and maybe a bit reserved, and let pride consume me when understanding should have been in it’s place. I should have been sharing the times when we couldn’t pay our credit card in full, and when big opportunities truly were too good to be true, and times when self-employment seemed worse than a corporate job. Not because I needed pity, and not because I needed to let anyone know that I am indeed human and don’t have a perfect life. But because those were the times that made me feel like I was doing the work. Like I was making my dreams come true. Like I was deserving of the title entrepreneur.
These past few years have been such a wild ride for me.
I have cried more than I ever have before. I have felt life closing in around me, leaving me with no where to go but up because I’d found my way down to the very bottom. I’ve been angry with myself, and my business, and my husband for no good reason more often than I would like to count. I’ve wasted far too much time drowning out sorrows from being the bearer and receiver of bad news on a regular basis. I’ve lost friends by choice and some by chance on a rather regular basis and found isolation more satisfactory at times. I’ve mourned the loss of pieces of me that I will never see return.
But the tears I shed helped me grow. And the times I had to claw my way out of the deepest hole I’d ever been in were the best lessons I have ever learned. And the anger has turned to forgiveness and gratitude. While I may be the bearer and receiver of bad news on a regular basis, I’m also the bearer and receiver of good news. The past relationships are part of my past for a reason – whatever that may be. And the layers I’ve lost have just cleared space for a better, brighter me.
I’ve broken rules and took risks that everyone told me not to. I landed on my feet over and over again, even after failing. Miserably. Multiple times. I’ve traded in my old dreams because I’ve repeatedly done things I thought to be impossible. These feats aren’t magic or chance – they’re a direct result from hard work that stems from a determined soul. I’ve stopped sitting still to ensure that nothing ever becomes dull, or boring, or even just stays the same. I’ve taken every fear I’ve had, faced it head on, and never stopped until it was no longer something that held a vice-like grip on my heart.
I write these things not to brag, but instead to serve as a reminder for myself. As a reminder that I’ve come so far even when I’ve wanted to give up and trade in this life for one less satisfying, but much less stressful. And as a nudge to share my mistakes and flaws with the world – they’re a sign of strength, not weakness. Growth, not regression.
I write these things to mark a place in my timeline where I found solace in my struggles.
I write these things to show myself that even when I wanted to wave my white flag, I didn’t. And I’m grateful for that.
I write these things to show those that dream of doing what I do some day that it’s not always easy. That there are days where it feels like it’s the worst decision you have ever made. That there are times where financial troubles can cause problems you never thought existed and that you aren’t always going to put on your best face when you wear that many hats and have that many responsibilities. But it’s worth it. Because in the end, you push boundaries and break the rules. You lose sight of the “can’ts” and ignore your fears because you know you can rise above.