One of my greatest lessons in life
Winning the lottery is a dream that many carry……………….fortunately for me, I won the lottery at birth. I was born to amazing loving, positive and encouraging parents who also happen to have an entrepreneurial spirit and taught me the importance of giving back, being kind, and most importantly enjoy life to the fullest.
My parents regularly asked me what I wanted to do “when I grow up” and like most kids, I always had an answer up my sleeve, but my most common answer used to be that I wished to one day have my own business.
“Okay, let’s open your business,” said my mom one day. And I was as confused as ever!
“You’re going to sell hazelnuts!” she exclaimed.
Off we went in the woods, picking hazelnuts, I remember the prickly feeling from their raw green skin and wasn’t too pleased with it, but as I watched her help me, I felt compelled to continue.
“If you want your own business, you have to put in the work” she would tell me, and she would tell me this often, not just this once.
My hazelnuts all clean and divided in clear plastic bags in quantities of 25,50,75,100 and all priced accordingly she watched me from the living room as I sold my treats to the neighbors at the entrance of our driveway.
At the end of the afternoon, I had sold everything. Put my money in my piggy bank, and oh what a great feeling this was.
I continued my journey, moved on to strawberries, blueberries, everything that was growing in our yard and surrounding areas I would pick them ,clean and sell them. It was hard work but I did this every summer until I was old enough to babysit.
Each summer I easily found babysitting jobs, even during the school year I would on evenings and weekends, the money was good, but let’s face it. I was working for someone else and I didn’t like the feeling very much, but like all life lessons, I knew this would one day pay off.
“Sometimes you have to put yourself out there, and sometimes you will need help and it’s ok to ask” She would sometimes tell me and I always wondered why in the back of my mind.
For those of you who don’t know me, I am from a small town, called Bathurst in New Brunswick. Jobs as a teenager are few far in between. So when I reached 15, I picked up the phone book and started calling all the restaurants and asking to speak to the manager.
“Hello, my name is Debbie, I had my own business when I was 7, I am a really hard worker and if given an interview you will not regret it.” Was my usual speech and it varied from time to time.
Most managers were surprised by my forwardness and it usually resulted in interviews and me getting the jobs. I moved around a bit from restaurant to restaurant until I found one I loved.
I was a subway assistant manager by the time I was 17 and at the end of that year, I moved on my own. No I wasn’t careless, no I wasn’t rebelling, I was addicted to independence and I could clearly see how my hard work was paying off and I wanted more.
Like anyone else, I asked myself from time to time, if I could go back, would I do things differently? And until a few years ago the answer to that question was always uncertain, but today I can clearly say NO. Everything happens for a reason, every lesson my family has taught me was for a reason.
Nothing was ever handed to me on a platter, my family worked hard, and only a few years ago did I learn how far my parents were willing to go to ensure we had everything we needed.
A few years ago I found out that while on a temporary layoff for economic reasons my parents were selling hazelnuts on the side of the road to be able to feed us ………..I HAD NO IDEA they would do this during the day while we were in school, we didn’t have a clue that they were not working at the time. Imagine my heart when I heard this story. I also found out that when things got really bad once, my mom walked into a grocery store and made arrangements with the owner so that she could buy groceries for a few weeks and pay in instalments.…..even more heart wrenching, but a testament of why I believe I won the lottery at birth, my parents were willing to do anything to take care of us.
On another note! I am so excited about my nails matching my favorite headband, check it out!