Today marks the ONE year anniversary since I said GoodBye to my 9-5 and started to pursue Lavender and Sea as something that would grow into my full time job.
I've always wanted to own my own business but I didn't know quite what that would look like. I loved calligraphy and weddings and wanted to merge the two. Rewind two years ago from today and I would be delivering my first batch of signs to a couple getting married. It's funny how these life changing events happened relatively on the same day (separated by a year). Two years ago I didn't have a business name and I wasn't at the skill level I wanted to be, but I had the drive to continue to pursue it.
One year ago today I quit my 9-5 but it wasn't exactly to pursue my calligraphy business. At the time I had just gotten married and my husband and I were scheduled to leave on our 2 week Honeymoon to Ireland, Scotland and New Orleans at the beginning of August. When I notified my boss 2 months prior that I would need to take time off he said "Well you don't have PTO so you can't take your honeymoon." Our plane tickets were purchased, our hearts were set, and it was OUR HONEYMOON... there was no way I was going to let this job (that I didn't love) stand in my way. I told my boss that I would take time off with no pay since I didn't have any paid time off left, he denied me. When I told my husband he said "just quit".
Not wanting to miss our honeymoon (obviously... I mean come on?!)... I put in my 3 week notice.. I didn't want to leave them high and dry so I gave him ample notice and offered to train my replacement. When my boss at the time received my notice he called me immediately. He didn't want to see me leave the company and asked if I would consider staying if he let me have the time off. I wasn't prepared for that question but at the moment there was this strong gut feeling I had and I just said "no". The resounding "no" wasn't born out of anger towards my boss, it came from something deeper inside of me, an unhappiness that had been growing in me for the past 4 years from working jobs that didn't feed my soul. I told him how I have been wanting to pursue my business of calligraphy for sometime now and working 50 hours a week made it difficult. I received the most unlikely compliment from the most unlikely source. He said to me "you know, I see a lot of myself in you" (P.S. I hated that he said that until I realized what he meant). He was a business owner, an entrepreneur and that is what he meant by his statement. In a weird way, him saying that confirmed that what I was doing was the right move.
We left for our honeymoon 5 days later. While in Ireland, on a bus ride from Ballintoy back to Dublin (with my husband fast asleep next to me.. he always does this when we travel haha) I had lots of time to think. I remember looking out the window and telling myself that I was going to be intentional about pursuing my business.. That night I received 2 emails for inquiries on wedding calligraphy... it was the confirmation I needed!
Now, I could drone on and on but I'm sure I've lost a few people by now! I want to end by saying a few things because I truly believe in being open and honest. First, my dream is to do this full time one day, I'm not there yet. I still bartend. However, I'm so thankful that I can bartend because it allows my schedule to be flexible. The reason I like to tell people this is... I think a lot of people have a misconception that pursuing your dreams and getting to do what you love is easy or all rainbows and unicorns. It's not. There are AMAZING things about it, but it takes hard work. I work hard everyday and sometimes I work for 14-16 hours a day. It's worth it though, as I know this is what I have to do to get where I want to go.
Lastly, I hope my story inspires you to chase your dreams, however difficult they may seem. I've never looked back since I quit my 9-5 and I'm a better person for it. Quitting that job sent joy flooding back into my life.
Thank you to everyone who supports me, you have no idea how important you are to me!