So Keith and I had maybe a thousand dollars to our names (including what was in piggy banks and the couch cushions) when we started our service company in 2010. Keith gave up a steady job with paid insurance, and we had a little boy and a little baby girl at the time. I had recently quit a $70k/year job, committed to being a homeschooler, and stayed home with my babies. We had to make it work. We were broke as convicts.
Then some years later, I borrowed from my own old 401k to build my dance studio after deciding to go out on that limb when I was 37. We decided to stay in our cracker box of a house a little longer, and forego our desire to upgrade until we could make our companies work. We were back at square one with a new venture, little money, and no real clue as to how it would all go.
Fortunately, it worked. It HAS worked. It could all crumble at any time, so we work to safeguard it and keep the momentum of both.
Our tax bills are high. The work is constant. The stress is always there. Other people now depend on us and the success of our businesses to feed their families.
Obstacles? There have been plenty! Tomorrow marks 6 years since Keith’s colon cancer surgery. I’ll tell you that story soon. And there have been MANY others.
Is it hard? Yes.
Do we worry? Every day.
Is it all worth it? YES!
We enjoy our work and are fulfilled and gratified in so many ways. Keith and I are proud of what we have accomplished, and occasionally we get to be victors enjoying the spoils. Then it’s right back to work.
My “favorite” things people say to us…
“You have your own business? You can set your own hours.”
“I mean, what else do you have to do at the studio when you’re not dancing?”
Oh gosh. Where do I start?
“You have 2 businesses? It must be nice.”
What must be nice? The fear? The risk? The taxes? The long hours? The responsibility? Which part?
“Love your truck. It must be nice.”
It is. We worked hard and earned it.
“Damn, your employee has a Corvette? I need to come to work for you!”
Our employee is a bad ass, responsible kid who saves his money, had a dream, and worked hard to make that happen. You don’t need his job, you need his work ethic.
“You’re the boss. Just take off.”
That’s not really how it works.
“When do you get off? Do you work Saturday?”
“You’re just so busy.”
It’s true. I’m also productive.
And the Queen Mother of remarks…
“You can’t hide money.”
Jesus take the wheel