I would first like to thank you for taking the time to read my story.
I am just about everything in this worl;, a mother of four, a wife, a daughter, a sister, a friend, AND AN ENTREPRENEUR.
I’m certain that my story isn’t anything special or unusual. In fact, it’s perhaps the same old thing, however, I promise if you keep reading you will see that I’ve gotten myself into a predicament!! The worse part is that I’m proving everyone right who said I was making a mistake. Ugh!! That is just about the worse place to be. While my intentions and efforts are good, great if I do say so myself, I continue to find them to be in a downward spiral.
Since college, I had this great vision of owning my own store, not your usual store, but a fun place to gather with friends. Not truly knowing much about business, and certainly not having funds to put my plans into action, I tabled my vision for a later date in life. 28 years later, After raising four kids, getting them into college, and feeling dead in a dead-end professional job, I found the time and the funds (my personal savings) to dust off that old dream of mine and put the plans in motion.
With the support of my family and friends, and long hours of physical labor from my husband, I brought that old vision of mine to a reality.
I opened the doors to my women’s boutique store, with pride and excitement, two years ago; a small place with a happy vibe. It’s a place for women to take their time and celebrate themselves and their own beauty. It’s a place for women to gather with friends, make new friends, and give back to the community. It’s a great place that allows everyone to be their beautiful self.
Today I am in jeopardy of having to close my store, shut the door on my dreams, and do away with this Happy place with a happy vibe. Why you ask? Because I found myself in a Tenant Landlord situation where I was taken full advantage of. Without truly understanding the laws of commercial tenancy, and being naive to the fact that people are good, I signed a lease that put me in a vulnerable situation without my knowing. Within the first six months in my new space, a pipe froze in the building that housed my small shop. As the water poured in, the phone rang to an attorney, representing the landlord, reminded me that despite the frozen pipe somewhere in her building, I was responsible. How could this be? Could it be? Yes, it was true. With three kids in college, I couldn’t fight her/them. They knew they had me right where they wanted me. I was forced to close the doors for several months, re-built someone else’s dream, and rebuilt someone else’s building. Despite insurance, I lost everything I put into my little world. Anyone who owns a business knows that having to close for four months is a death sentence. All of my supporters advised me to bail on my dream. It was time to move on. But, I couldn’t. I refused to let someone else squash my dream. I wouldn’t let someone else squash my dreams!!
Fast forward to today. I moved my little shop into a new space, However, I am drowning and while I can admit it to all of you, I can’t admit it to anyone else. I worked so hard to set a good example for my daughters, teaching them and showing them that you can do whatever you put your mind to, that no dream is out of reach and that when the time is right you just GO FOR IT! I JUST haven’t been able to dig myself out of the hole that someone else created for me. And as I struggle day to day to keep my dream alive and afloat, and my small doors open, I just can’t hear those words, “I told you so”.
The sad thing is that it wouldn’t take much to get me back on track.
I need a new sign, some new product, pay some outstanding bills, and a few supplies. I know that with your help I can keep my dream alive and prove to the world that with determination and a little help from friends, you can keep moving forward one step at a time.
Thank you for keeping my dream alive. I promise to pay it forward 😊