People often ask me what drives me. Or why I seem to work so hard. They think I’m ‘driven’ or ‘ambitious.’
I might be those things.
But more than anything, I’m a woman who is in her eighth year of living away from home.
Who is ready to go back.
Here’s the background story and I’m sure many elements will resonate with those living away from family…
In 2007, my then-boyfriend got offered a job in Sydney. I had just finished up working on a big project and had no idea what I was going to do next.
There was never a question that I’d let him go alone. He knew this, he proposed, so we headed to Sydney as an engaged couple.
Work there was a little disappointing for me, so I started freelancing back to the production company I had left in Melbourne. I worked on some awesome projects, and many boring ones.
And I worked from home. It was a pretty lonely time. Thank goodness my sister was living in Sydney at the time, too.
We got married, travelled a lot, and did a lot of I HAVE NO IDEA (Seriously, what was our time spent doing before kids?!).
My father-in-law was diagnosed with cancer while we still lived in Sydney, so we spent many many weekends up and back to Melbourne. His passing remains one of the most significant life events, not only for my husband but for me, too. I was ill-equipped to love someone through that kind of grief.
It was a dark time. And it was just us. But we got through it.
Then I got pregnant.
I won’t go into all the details. Except to say that our families arrived for the birth of our precious baby boy. And then they left.
And on day 4 with crazy emotions – it totally sucked. So bad.
Goodbyes have always been hard for me. I’m not great at them. I guess no one is?
Fast-forwarding a few years, two more kids, and a move to Brisbane later and I’m selling Thermomixers trying to meet people in a new city.
It wasn’t ideal.
We’d moved to Brisbane for work for my husband. I only had two kids at that stage. We were planning to go south, but the work wasn’t there for Nick.
I’d been working from home since my son was four months old. Don’t kill me, but I was bored because he slept so much! Good problem to have, I know. So I worked four hours a day while he slept.
Working while they nap has always been a part of motherhood for me.
But after the birth of the third babe, I knew I would have to go back to ‘proper work’ after a year. I had no idea what I’d do – the thought of applying for jobs on SEEK freaked me out.
A few years earlier, I’d started a little blog and FB page sharing the food that my family was eating. I’d done some study about Nutrition and I couldn’t believe what I was learning. Like so many people, I wanted to share that what I had always known about food – wasn’t serving my health.
So I sporadically blogged and did a lot of Facebooking. I loved my little community. They were a lifeline for me between motherhood boredom and the real world!!
An amazing friend was over for my first alcoholic drink post pregnancy and birth (you share these moments with friends!) and she encouraged me to put together a free 21 Day Wholefood Challenge. I had no idea what I was doing. Literally – no idea!
But I put everything I had into it. And people loved it!
It was enough to encourage me to create Small Steps to Wholefoods. I knew that I could help people – I just hadn’t worked out how. Now I had.
And my dream of creating a ‘location independent’ business was born.
Perhaps, it could take me home?
Perhaps we wouldn’t have to ‘go where the work is’ and could choose where to live.
Perhaps my kids could grow up with their cousins.
Perhaps we’d be able to attend the family events we miss out on.
Perhaps all the special, delicious, touching moments we were experiencing with our children could be shared with other people who loved them.
Perhaps we’d go back to our village.
Almost two years down the path of starting this little business, we are not yet home in Melbourne. But here’s the unexpected thing: The journey to create the dream has been just as exciting as the dream itself. I wouldn’t still be doing it if I wasn’t crazily fulfilled by my life.
Every trip back to Melbourne watching my children play with their cousins and spending time on my sister’s couch just chatting reminds me of my ‘why.’ It reminds me that Nick and I are working towards a life where we don’t need to be anywhere but where we want to be.
And the late nights working are worth it. And the ups and downs that are part of having your own business are worth it.
Because one day we’ll be home.
And in the meantime, I grow stronger in the knowledge that although it isn’t always pretty and perfect, my marriage has survived seriously tough moments. And we prevail. Leaving home all those years ago, I had no idea what I was in for (I may have stayed put if I did!!).
I feel so blessed to have created a business that fills my soul up. That puts me in conversations with amazing women doing amazing work for their families. That allows me to interview some of my idols and share the genius of women I deeply admire.
So even while the dream of heading back home is brewing, I know where home is.
It’s doing the work I love doing, sharing life with an amazing man, with three children that light me up, living in our crazy, chaotic household – eating real food – of course!!
Yep, blessed am I.
Amongst all this, a few crazy things have happened — one of which is being nominated by beautiful people in this community for an AusMumpreneur Award.
This blog was started with the intention of keeping it real for those trying to make healthy dietary changes. To let them know they are not alone in their imperfection and need for chocolate! That making these changes is hard. I’m going to keep reminding you that YOU ARE DOING GREAT. It’s my job. It’s what I do!!
Whether I win anything or not, the fact that some of you nominated me was really touching. I do what I do because I want to make a difference in your life.
And I also want to move our family.
So now you know what drives me. But what I’ve worked out is that home isn’t Melbourne. Home is family. And I adore mine.
If I’ve made a difference to your life and you feel like voting – you can vote for me via this link – just look for me in the Making A Difference – Business category.
Thanks for sticking around about being a community I love serving. I have a lot of cool stuff planned!!
Stay tuned…… x
PS. If you are interested in learning more about creating an online business – or growing the one you have – pop your details here if you’d like me to send you information and inspiration to help along the way.