I realized yesterday that five years ago I wrote this first post. I don’t really feel the need to acknowledge this anniversary every time March rolls around, but 5 is a nice, round number. I don’t know that we would have imagined that we (the blog and the business) would still be around 5 years later when we were both sitting on the couch in 2008 wondering what we were going to do next. Who knows how long any new venture or business is going to stick around? The world can be fickle and there are never any guarantees.
I think in the beginning when things are just starting to happen and there is that exciting mix of nervous energy and the scary prospect of venturing into the unknown, you’re just taking things one day and one milestone at a time. It’s funny to read that first post now, so if I knew where we’d be now back then, would I be happy with where we ended up 5 years later? I think, yes. Things may not be as exciting and risky as it felt back in the early days, but the business has settled into a stable pace and that’s not a bad place to be in today’s world. There are definitely days when I think we should have done more by now (why do we not have a store? Or staff? Or a book?), but I recognize that we’ve approached growth rather conservatively and I also know that these feelings manifest when I’m comparing ourselves to others and not with what feels right or works for us right now. We’ve done things over the past 5 years that works for our lives and our family and all those decisions, big and small, are all choices that we’ve made. Still, it’s worth reminding ourselves to take a moment to celebrate what we have built in the last 5 years, without any outside help or PR or advertising. Sometimes this gets lost when you’re dealing with the day to day.
It’s been nearly two years since I wrote that “breadwinner” post (and I have to say, sometimes I look back and cringe at the brutal honesty of some of the old entries). Well, last year it happened, where the profits from the business out-earned my freelance income for the first time. I see that the balance might be tipping and this might be the norm. Three and half years ago I had ambitions of the business supporting our family 100%. Two years ago I started questioning whether this could be a reality. Five years in, I’m starting to think again that it might actually be possible. I continue to freelance because I need to engage that part of my brain, but I also know that despite whatever staying power we’ve demonstrated so far, the world and this market is still a fickle place. I guess I like to leave all options open as security. But it’s nice to know that we remain headed in a direction where our early ambitions are becoming real possibilities.