For some people;
That drive past my shop daily, going about their usual routine… they do not even know I exist. Then one day, my quaint little shop catches their eye and they are intrigued - their minds are filled with questions. “Where did this shop come from?” “What is this place all about?” “Haven’t seen this before!! When did you pop-up?”
When they hear that we have completed a year, they are at a total loss for words. Looking around, their jaws drop and mouths fall open in awe and amazement. “Wow! You have been here for a year?” or “Oh really??? A whole year?”
Yes! It’s been one year!
One long, crazy, exhausting, sometimes scary, but mostly a whole year filled with excitement and love.
But then again, it also feels like it was just yesterday when we set our eyes and hearts on this lovely little shop’s name and decided it was what we wanted to do. The memory is so fresh in my mind when I recall us looking into each other’s eyes and together, at the same time saying, “YES!”
If you ask me, “How do you feel about the year?”
Automatically my head will shake from side to side and as prepared as I may be for the question, I will probably start off with some inaudible sounds like ahhhhh, hmmmmm, ohh…
After a deep breath and regaining composure, I will say with a sigh, “It was okay actually.”
One may take it as a sense of disappointment or a complaint, but no… that is not what I mean to portray. I never complain because I am not the type of person who sees wrong in anything. I am a positive, actually in a way - a stupidly positive person. You can call me a daydreamer. I am the definition of that word: daydreamer. Yes, that’s me! Imagine this: I am carrying a hidden hope box just above my head filled with all my dreams and I carry it everywhere I go. The reason I feel that “it was okay” is simply because I used to do more things in past.
My life was all about simultaneously managing, creating, forming business plans, numbers, numbers, numbers, EBITDAs, budgets, setting goals for a year, for three years, for five years, strategy management, board meetings, publishing, leading teams, running to catch company goals, presentations, presentations, presentations, advertising, mass and digital media planning, running from a meeting to another one with my Louboutin’s - No jokes I used to live in those shoes and never felt weird … but now Nike is my best friend!
I could do all of this at once because I was in a comfortable environment, like playing in my own garden. But now, I am in a new place…. Abiding by new rules, adapting to different situations, making new friends, adjusting to a new socioeconomically system, learning about a new culture and making a new life in retail experience - serving retail store customers which is something I never faced before. I feel like Alice in Wonderland, wearing huge shoes -not easy to walk or run.
So, for now, I’m saying that for now because I know that it will be okay soon. I will learn how to walk and run with those giant shoes. And I will run again. I am sure about that.
This is all so very different for me. As a former journalist, author of couple books and a media & television personality, I’ve never had any retail experience before. I have been invited to bookshops, new brands shops, companies and their sale events, Book Signing Days, New Product Launching Events and more different things… like celebrative invitation, that’s all. I studied tourism in London, worked for Singapore Airlines and then I jumped from international airline sector to an advertising agency. With a successful entrepreneurship experience, I then found myself in digital business, national TV and newspapers, magazines…
As a professional creative management person, I have always tried to keep my entrepreneurship soul inside my heart. I keep it alive. I feed it. I support it. Searching for new things, trying to learn that “Everyday Something New” asking questions and listening carefully to what is being said.
I felt sometimes it’s like keeping your childhood excitement inside. Do you remember how you felt about the new bike that you got when you were six years old? Or waking up early morning on the day of your family vacation trip and feeling something unexplainable happening inside your belly, when you were just eight years old? Well, it is totally like this for me.
Entrepreneurship made me feel this every day even while working with big mass media. Because it is what makes up who you are – a motivated person, a thinker and then a deep thinker, a risk taker, a creative and even more creative mind, multi-tasker, a hard worker… a true hard worker.
And then there is life. It has one of a kind, unique mindset.
It listens to you even without your knowledge… Reading your mind and soul without your understanding. There are times when you are crossroads and do not know which way to go … but it knows. You may make your plans and take your decisions but in the end… life sees something hidden inside of you and BOOM! It works on your secrets and makes its own plans behind your back … Acting like an enemy - but in positive ways.
And finally, one morning you wake up and see yourself in a totally new path. Like me!
Now I sit here, in my little shop with colorful threads, amazing fabric, lots of creative material and some industrial machinery platform. Some of this stuff I had never heard of before. Some things I have not even touched before. A year back, if anyone had even asked me “What is a bobbin?” my reply would be simple…“Surely, I could say something mechanical, it’s about the cars? Am I right?”
Now, I know what is a bobbin, all the sizes, differences, brands, prices, which is the best one, which is worst one, where you can buy the best one with cheaper price. I can tell you how it is wound and even teach you how to fix a broken bobbin.
So, every day, gladly, I am still learning something new! I am doing something new! I am working to create beautiful things and trying to make my customers the happiest. I believe these sayings in my bones "Do what you love!" "Love what you do!" What else a person needs? Here is my answer, family health, happiness and inner peace. So, Thank God for everything!
PS: I am happily married with three wonderful, healthy and perfectly imperfect kids. I live a beautiful and healthy life surrounded by many books, threads, fabrics, tassels, pompoms and all the colors of the universe… and let me not forget my New England trees!
August 2017, CT
Remember that the happiest people are not
those getting more, but those giving more.
H. Jackson Brown, Jr.