Time to be Real and Raw...

Journal Entry - 4/25/19
”There are so many thoughts swirling around in my head that I fear I may have trouble sorting them out as I write. I have so many things going on right now- other than my top priorities, my husband and kids, I’m committed to a number of things. I have my online clothing boutique with occasional pop-ups. I recently switched our home to more natural products and have spent quite some time referring friends and family to be customers, treating it as my career to be honest. We just moved back to North Dakota and are in the process of finding a home to buy. My garage is FULL of stuff that I need to go through and organize, and meanwhile try to get rid of as much as possible. Connected to my boutique I have a mom blog/Instagram that I desire to prioritize more but has been severely neglected. And on top of everything I am consumed with cooking for and feeding my family, trying to keep a clean home, wondering how in the world I’m going to get my kids to sleep in their own beds in their own room, worrying about my husband not getting enough sleep, asking myself if it would be good for my mental health to get a part-time job outside of the home, wishing we were settled in a house and I didn’t have to drive around everyday for my kids to nap and my daughter would take the bottle and we were able to see family more often and should I hang stuff on the walls or are we just going to turn around and pack it all up in a month? 
Like I said, my mind is FULL of thoughts. And ideas. I have so many ideas! 
Do I keep my online boutique or do I put it on hold until I can have a storefront? Do I aim to have a storefront soon? Or perhaps a cute little mobile boutique? But what about the kids? Who will watch them? I don’t know people well enough yet to trust them with my kids, not that there are any openings anywhere anyways.
What. Do. I. Do?!
I started my boutique partly for myself and partly as a way of ministry. It was my creative outlet for sharing the love of Jesus. I’m not so sure that I fulfilled that goal, but it was my goal nonetheless. But if I’m being honest… My heart is not in it like it was. I also don’t have time to sit down and spend hours marketing my business everyday, so business ain’t so good anyways. Just being honest. 
If I’m spending more than I’m making, or barely breaking even every month to cover the cost of running the business, then what is the point? For a while it was fun. And packaging and sending orders and doing pop-ups are still fun. But the orders are becoming a rarity and pop-ups are only in the warmer months, and even those have become extremely stressful with two kids and a husband who works 6 days a week. I can’t commit to a vendor show unless I know my kids will be taken care of, and even when they can be watched I worry about my daughter who won’t take the bottle and is awfully attached to mama.
So here I am… questioning everything once again. Only this time it’s not based on a “feeling.” I don’t “feel” like it’s time for something new. I’m just kind of over it, and I think I have been for a while. Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE having my little online boutique. Like I said before, it's so fun for me fulfilling orders and selling clothes at vendor shows. But I’m at a point where I don’t have time to prioritize it like it needs to be successful. If I’m being really real and raw, I’ve tried all that I know how to do and even with advertising and marketing business is slow. So it brings me to wonder if all this is worth the constant stress of wondering if I’ll be able to make my minimum payments and fees for running my business.
The only way I see true success is by having a storefront. A truly wonderful and unique experience for customers, something that will stand out from the rest. Right now my online boutique just blends in with all the other white noise.
So what am I to do when it’s our goal to get out of debt by the end of the year and my business is totally inhibiting that process by putting us into more debt? It’s not fair to my family to keep doing this “just for fun” when it’s costing us so much. It’s not just the financial cost, but when it stresses me out and causes worry and anxiety, I’m really not the best mom or wife. I’m an at-home mom on purpose, so I can be fully present with my kids, but if this business is causing me to be constantly focused on other things then I’m totally missing the point of being at home!
...Okay, I think I’m done rambling. I was hoping to sort out my thoughts as I wrote but in all honesty I’m still pretty confused. My heart wants to keep going because I love it, even with all the stress. But I fear there might be a pride thing mixed in there too. Too prideful to say “it’s not the right time” or “it didn’t workout like I hoped.” And not going to lie, it does feel kind of good when someone says, “you have an online clothing boutique?! That’s so cool!” 
But let’s be real here. My head says to look at it logically. I’m not making money; I’m actually costing us money. I can barely stay afloat. I don’t have time. It’s more stressful than fun. I can’t do pop-ups unless my husband has off work, which is rare because most vendor shows are on Saturdays and he’s working 6 days a week. So every time I want to do a show I have to worry about who will watch my kids, and now that we’re in North Dakota with no family that’s pretty difficult. And not to mention the fact that I don’t have the means to grow in the ways I want and are important to me…
Okay so I might know what the right thing to do is here... but I’m afraid to be deemed a quitter, or a failure. But then again- who cares?! If it’s the best decision for us at the moment, I shouldn’t care what other people might think or say. My family comes first. And if my pride is the only thing taking a hit, I think we’re going to be okay… Hmm, maybe I’m not as confused as I thought I was...”
So... here we are...
Friends, all of this to say I’m closing my boutique. It’s time. I’ve been stretching it out as far as I could but it’s time to let it go. At least for now- I firmly believe that if there is ever a right time it will present itself. I know I’ve been back and forth a few times and I’m sure that has been annoying to see. I’m in a much better place now mentally and emotionally to make a clear-headed decision like this, and my husband and I have talked it through, so this is it for the online boutique. My dreams of having a coffeeshop and boutique will be a reality someday, whether that is soon or years from now. But right now I’m going to focus on my family and everything we have going on. I want to be fully present without the constant worries from this particular business. It’s been a truly fun ride! I look forward to a more quiet and content life with my loves. I will continue to post on my @darlingdaughterblog Instagram, and as soon as I find a good platform I will have my blog up as well.
I’m so so so grateful to everyone who has supported me and my boutique. I have so much love and gratefulness in my heart for you! If anyone would like to help clear out my inventory or spread the word, that would be great. I would like to sell off as much as possible to pay off the debt that was created when all this began.
Thank you :)

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