Tuesday, November 25, 2014

The excitement of having your own small business....

Ahh....the adventure of stepping out on your own as an independent business owner. I remember.

There is nothing quite like the excitement of doing this, as no class can prepare you for all the balls that you will need to learn how to juggle or the numerous tasks and responsibilities that they fail to mention to you in school. It is an adventure all it's own; one that people often view as a leap of faith or a defining moment in one's life. There will be the highs and the lows and the worry, but at the end of the day you may turn the key in a door that is yours and yours alone. 

You might be the captain of a ship on the tumultuous seas, or just one single person in a tiny boat, frantically rowing to keep up with the rushing current. There will be struggle and second-guessing and incredibly long hours as you work to prove yourself, and there might be the sweet taste of success that eludes so many - yes, it may be yours! And if you truly care about doing what's right and standing up for your principles, be prepared, since those choices sometimes come at a cost. It is an experience like no other, but keep in mind; should you grow tired or stale or disillusioned, that there is nothing quite like the pain of having to let go of a dream.....I hope for you that never happens.

Never stop growing; reaching; improving.  I wish you well on your journey

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Thursday, November 13, 2014

I'm out.

The last few display pieces have been picked up and the final items are in storage. I'm on day two of trying to process that I'm unemployed, have nothing that is truly mine and that I've said goodbye to what I loved.

To those of you who supported and loved this shop, it was an honor to have you as customers and friends. I will miss being part of your summer vacations, seeing your families and chatting each year with so many of you that I came to know.

Thank you for this time of my life. I will remember you forever.

Thursday, November 6, 2014

No longer a small business owner

It's just about over. A few things remain in the store that were to be picked up or taken away and that should be done by tomorrow.

There's a faded window sign proclaiming the very best in old-fashioned candies and sweets lying on the floor by the door, and a few stacks of glass shelving sitting against the wall.

What used to be my store now has an echo, something I knew would happen and yet pretended not to notice over the last few weeks. When my friend two doors down closed her shop last month I went in towards the end and the hollowness was there. I couldn't stand it. I had gone in to be supportive of her closing and yet the echo made it hard for me to pay attention or stay long. I knew my shop would be next.

This has been the hardest thing I've ever done. Not just the saying goodbye, or searching for a new direction or letting go of the dream, but physically also. Serious lack of planning and dragging my feet didn't help but I'd also underestimated the amount of work and time it would take to sort, donate, sell, set aside and pack up 19 years of memories. Running several days beyond the date I was officially to be out wasn't planned but it just worked out that way.

By tomorrow I should be finished and will place the  keys in an envelope and drop them into the slot for the landlord. I'm no longer able to say I'm a small business owner. The time has come to move on.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

November 4th

Today is the final day of this process. It has to be since I'm beyond exhausted, very stressed and several days late on this whole moving process. Yes, I seriously underestimated the amount of work and am paying for that mistake but I think I can swing it to be finished by tonight.

But first I have a dentist appointment then packing up for another trip to storage,  another day of hoping I don't get a ticket for expired tags on my car, and somehow finding time to go vote.

I need an end to this and sincerely hope today's the day.

Sunday, November 2, 2014

What if I can't write anymore?

I wanted desperately to write one of the last posts on this blog from here, in this store where so much has happened. I'm trying not to give in to the ridiculous idea that it only took place here and may never again; because what I have learned to say on a screen came from my heart once my  mind mended.

That's something I should be able to keep, cultivate and continue no matter where I am. I say that and try to believe it but a piece of me silently asks, what if this place where you healed, stepped out of the shadows and into the light - what if the loss of so many things that were so important suddenly pulls one of the legs out from under the table? Yes, tables can and do stand on three legs but only when they were made that way; not when they came to depend upon a fourth.

I can't think like that. I have to take the good and the bad from this experience and go on to set this old laptop on another counter or table or desk and let the words out. It's not fair to let myself think it's over just because I'll be sitting somewhere different.
I hope that somehow before Monday night I can sit here in this now-silent shell of a store and once again pour my heart out. I'm so afraid the words will come to a halt when I leave here; I just want to stay tonight and write. And remember. And keep loving the piece of my life that matters so much to me that it's stinging my eyes and running down my cheeks again.

Saturday, November 1, 2014

90 days was up at midnight

I didn't make it. Despite working non-stop all week I wasn't able to have everything packed up and out by Friday night.

Yes, the sorting and decisions and memories overwhelmed me and progress was slow - much slower than I'd anticipated. And as I noticed my hesitation and inability to let go, toss or keep, it dawned on me that perhaps maintaining a shop of this size had become more than I could gracefully handle.

Two folks who were unable to come and pick up several large items left me scrambling and  when I wrenched my back Thursday night I realized it wasn't going to happen. I got an extension until Monday and after a day of rest am back for another 12-14 hours.

I don't appreciate the nagging feeling in my head that keeps pointing out I've become easily overwhelmed like this more than a few times in the last couple of years. Maybe since  losing my employees four years ago when my workman's comp policy increased (by six times the previous rate), I'd been so alone with this amount of work that things had become more difficult for me.
Maybe I had changed and simply didn't have what it took anymore. In any case I've got a new deadline which will be day 93 since I gave notice.

I've got a lot to do and I'd love to slap that annoying little feeling buzzing around my head which reminds me that perhaps I HAVE slipped a little; lost my edge maybe. It's good I have a lot of hours ahead to be thinking this over.

A picture of how we looked earlier this year....the way so many of my customers knew this place and loved it.