Thursday, August 13, 2015

August 2015

I went by the shopping center a week or so ago late at night and had to stop and look. My store still sits empty.

 Now there is another one closing too....

Paco's Paradise has been there for more

Friday, July 24, 2015

About #thefinal90

Some folks have come across this journey recently and been curious how it came to be. If you didn't go back to the beginning and start there this is a summary. 

A few days before the deadline of Friday, August 1st 2014, a new blog began. Launched to capture the process of letting go and ending the 19 year run of a small local business; not done for sympathy or attention but as a way of explaining what it's like to close a beloved store. There's not much written about this sort of thing but my store deserved to have it's story told.

Here is where it starts -


My shop's final story has now been shared across many
social sites. You can find it by searching 
keyword/hashtag #thefinal90. Thanks for reading.

Thursday, June 4, 2015

Cleaning out a storage unit June 4th, 2015

I'm heading to a shop in a small town near me today to sell off some of the things I held onto. There isn't ever going to be another retail store for me and six months later I'm trying to remember why I held onto all this anyway. 

My van is loaded up with merchandise that someone will look at and possibly make an offer on. The store is one I've visited plenty of time and shopped at - one which maybe ten years ago began as just a tiny little space and grew into a beautifully showcased retail emporium that it is today. I'm glad to know these people planned well and made their dream come true but I can't stop thinking and wondering where I went wrong with mine. 

So much love, effort, hard work and dedication poured into my shop for all those years is now boiling down to a storage unit of stuff which needs to be sold, donated or just thrown away. The dream is over and insane as it may sound, six months later it hurts as much as it did in October of last year. I'm not letting go gracefully I guess.


Thursday, May 21, 2015

Six months later

Sometimes things have a funny way if sneaking up on you. I remember the first time I went grocery shopping after closing my store in October of last year. I recall thinking it was my first time in an independently owned store, no longer as a small business owner, and it felt strange to no longer be "one of them".

Tonight its six months later and I'm lost. The job search isn't going so well and I can't find my place. Maybe it's because I haven't made peace with closing that door yet - for the last half a year it's been absent from my life but now here it is just before Memorial weekend. All the small business owners t hat I know are working late, getting prepared and being the captains of small ships on the sea of enterprise. 

My ship doesn't sail there anymore and while I've struggled to come to terms with the end of a 19 year run, somehow I thought it would be easier to move on. I miss my little shop; my customers; being good at what I did and loving it so much. I guess when you've had all that,  feeling lost is to be expected. I'm not sure where I go from here. 

Friday, March 27, 2015

Missing what was

I am missing my business so much lately. The only place where I came alive for one of the only times in my life, is gone and it feels like I've lost a piece of my soul.

I loved the customers, the kids, the strangers who turned into friends, our conversations and the dream. Because five months later that's what it's fading into; just a dream. I will likely never be a small business owner again because it's becoming clear to me that fear of failure and loss a second time is something I can't risk. To lose a part of my heart after 19 years is something I'm still struggling to I let so much time slip away while on the wrong path.

Finding a job is proving to be much harder than I'd thought and the silence of what's gone just echos around me now. It's spring; there should be excitement for a new season; plans being made and instead there is silence. I let what most refer to as the best years of one's life fade away doing what amounted to nothing and now the emptiness is crushing me.

I wish I could hit replay but it's too late. The piece that completed me is missing and while a shadow is still looking for a job, what made me jump put of bed in the mornings full of enthusiasm to get to work has died. Finally I can say that perhaps it would have been better if I'd never been a small retail shop owner. There is a sadness in my life that I can't fill.