When Your Dreams Take a Detour
I remember when I started to plan out the dreams I had for opening a new store. It would be the kind of store you read about in a Debbie Macomber book. You know the one where everyone comes in and crafts together during the day and evening. Where they build friendships and teach newcomers the ways of their amazing talents. That is what my initial dream was. There was so much excitement as I planned out the layout of the store and went looking at different places to rent. It had to be just right, with enough space to be able to sit around a very large table to craft and chat, a place to store the products I would sell, A place to showcase local talents' work, and it had to have parking. I even had a place picked out. We were ready to sign a 5-year lease on the place. It was even beside a pub. I mean how much better could it get? But then my husband and I talked. Yes I know, why the fuck did I do that? It never goes well when you talk about the what if's that come with everything. Like 'what if the business doesn't do well and we can't pay the rent?' 'What if we lose the house?'
This was the first time THIS dream took a detour. It really isn't the first time in my life a dream has taken a detour. I learned long ago that sometimes the dreams we have don't have a straight path. They are curving and sometimes you feel like you are on this wild roller coaster that will never end. They do end. Sometimes with the results you want and sometimes with different results. Often we have to pause our dream and come back to it later and you know what? That is totally okay to do! It really is. Let me take you back to when I was in my late teens. I really wanted a family of my own. It was what I was always taught. You get married and have a family. It was how I was raised. I did this. Five years into this marriage and three children later, my husband sent me shopping for a toaster at Costco, came home from work, packed his things, and hopped on a plane to England. I learned a lot of things during this time. I learned I was a stronger person than I EVER could have imagined I was. I learned that my path in life would NEVER be linear. I learned that sometimes the ideals and dreams you grew up with and built your life on were not always what they seemed. I realized that I was capable of so much and grew to be a very strong person and that while it did take time, I did get the family I wanted and love more than anything. It wasn't even the original dream or plan I had for a family, however, it was so much better.
Back to the dream of the store though. My husband and I decided that the full picture of the dream I was envisioning was not possible right now. My dream changed and so did my plans. I began building a website and continued speaking with the major brands for the products I would be selling to get their authorization to sell the product I needed. We had made a plan to go out and reach out to vendors at local markets when the website was live. We had a launch date of March 9, 2020. There began to be talk of a really bad flu going around but I didn't think anything of it. I was like, meh it will pass over.
My daughter and I made up sample bags with products in them and headed out to the first market scheduled after the launch of the store. It had been canceled! COVID had just begun! When I look back at this and the decision my husband and I made to NOT do a storefront location, I can't even explain the relief. I did so well in the first 2 years. Like really well. Even with competition popping up. Then everything opened up again. People went back to work, kids began their after-school sports, and families got super busy. The business started to slow down. A LOT! I held on to my dream though. I was clinging to it because it was my dream and I really didn't want to fail at my dream. Truly didn't.
Here we are at our almost 3-year anniversary and I have had to make another detour. Another curve in the roller coaster ride of my life. Let me tell you what I have LOVED about the past 3 years. I have met so many AMAZING people! I have gained so many truly AMAZING friends through this that I wouldn't have been able to meet otherwise. You know who you are.
So here it is, once my product is gone, it will be gone. While I don't want to close the shop aspect of my business, I don't have a choice. I have gone back and forth with my decision so many times. Cried at night while others slept because I don't know what else to do. Hell, I am tearing up as I write this today. I have tried to build something that I don't know if everyone else wanted or needed. That is okay. My dream is not totally done. I will continue to write blogs about crafting and do tutorials about crafting as well. I will be doing affiliate programs with companies I enjoy and use regularly. So no that will not include Cricut at all. So far those are DesignBundles and Amazon.ca. I will still be here to answer ANY and ALL questions you may have. I have not made a complete decision about outdoor markets as of yet. Although indoor markets I will not be doing. For now, though I am somewhat at peace with my decision. It will take time to get there I think.
This dream and journey is on a big detour BUT it also opens up other paths. So thank you! Thank you to everyone who has given me a chance. For everyone who chose to learn with me.
Happy Crafting Y'all