Updated: Feb 26, 2021

Like many of you out there, I find myself living in a gray-area of uncertainty. Most of our bedding vendors from overseas are shut down for the time being, many of our clients are staying put and not taking appointments for the foreseeable future (#StayHome), and a lot of my free-lance design work has dried up as projects are being put on hold until things calm down. Even friends and family members of mine have been recently laid-off due to their companies being unable to sustain under this immense pressure.

My entire life has been nothing but working in restaurants and some form of the Interior Design Industry - both of which seem to be in a state of complete unrest at the moment. I was one of those annoying kids who just always knew what she wanted to do, even early on in high-school. From a very young age I found myself noticing different finishes and design details everywhere I went. (I attribute this to my dad, who would always walk me around houses that were being built in our neighborhood and explaining things to me. He was a contractor/handy man when he wasn't working at our family restaurant).

To this day, I am constantly embarrassing my husband when we go out. I think nothing of flipping over chairs to find a manufacturer name, taking pictures of random details/finishes I love, maybe even asking the waiter if he knows who designed the restaurant we are eating at, and so on! It truly is an addiction / passion (the same way I can't turn off my restaurant manager brain, but that is another story for another day)!

I was really hopeful for 2020! The last year / year-and-a-half has been a struggle for me personally. The excitement of a fresh start from a new decade was so enticing, but here I am again, finding myself stuck in somewhat of the same pattern. It has me thinking that this is the Universe/God/(Insert whatever higher power you believe in here) telling me it is finally time to stop thinking about the "what-ifs", and finally take the leap. Time to PIVOT!!

Let's Get Personal

I have had a lot of time to sit and be honest with myself the last few days, and the truth is I have been in a slight state of unrest since the latter part of 2018. Ever since I graduated design school I put my head down and worked my tuchus off trying to absorb as much as I could to become this amazing Interior Designer. When 2018 rolled around I was five years in and working for what most would call a dream boss, with job-perks that were even better! Yet I still found myself with a strong desire for something more. So I quit!

As hard as it was to leave, I took a chance in the hopes that a different role with a little more responsibility would do the trick to settle my existential crisis of sorts. Within four months my body was already starting to tell me that this was not the answer to my inner dilemma. On a side note, I have lived with an auto-inflammatory disease for over half my life (Hidradenitis Suppurativa if you are interested), but it can cause pretty painful cysts in some pretty sh***y areas. In April of 2019 I developed a horrible monster of a cyst that almost became septic, and has since required 6 surgeries to rectify. Almost a year later, I still have a few surgeries to go before I am completely healed.

I fought hard to bounce-back. So committed to prove my worth, and not give into the vulnerability my disease can cause. I continued to focus on throwing myself into work, because that is what I have always been taught to do. To be honest, I don't even think I really let myself truly feel what was really going on, and unbeknown to me, this was just the beginning of the rollercoaster I call 2019.

In August of that same year I was on my normal morning commute, at a dead stop in the every day grind of Orlando morning traffic, when I see a car speeding towards me in my rear-view mirror. Before I could even finish the thought "is he going to slow down?" - BOOM! I don't remember the impact, but waking to a bunch of smoke in my car, and just trying to orient myself enough to get out. When I opened my door there was a huge SUV less than five feet from my car, and I instantly knew how lucky I was not to be more seriously injured. I am pretty sure my Lucky Cat saved my life, and walked away with a couple herniated discs, a huge knot on my head, and some continuing physical therapy.

Photo of the back-end damage of my car (there was front-end damage too), a horribly funny photo of myself after (with coffee all over my face), and my Lucky-Cat (AKA Life-Saver).

To top this off - a friend of mine, and long standing mentor from when I worked at Maggiano's for seven years, decided to leave this world by taking his own life; leaving behind his wife and son - two people that absolutely made him light-up when he talked about them. Let's just say I was now completely shook! It was then that I took a deep dive into what I really wanted, and what was going to make me happy. After taking some time to think it over, I decided it was time to get out there and start my own business! Hence the birth of Bedding Babes in October of 2019, giving me the momentum I needed to keep going! I hit the ground running with my fresh point of view, and the excitement of another decade ushering me into this new life, and yet, here we are...

Where Do We Go From Here

This has me back to the idea that the Powers That Be are trying to tell me to really STOP. Making it crystal clear that it is time to try something different, that the way I have been doing things is not working for me anymore. Time to find a new approach, or a new way of utilizing my expertise in some other way. To Pivot!

I can't help but think that after years of unrest across the globe, maybe this pandemic is another way to cause everyone to hit their reset button. Realize things we have been doing that are no longer working for us. It is time to let-go, and look forward to a new way of life! As nervous and scared as I am of change and all this uncertainty, I just keep trying to remind myself that when I come out on the other side of this I will be a stronger person. Just like every other battle I have fought! I know you will be too!

Keep fighting friends!



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