[Clouds of Pompei is playing… “don’t cry, hold your head up high, she would want you to, she would want you to, just don’t cry…”]
Yesterday I found out that we are officially broke. Out of money. And worse than I expected on this date. You can never estimate runway perfectly. Especially when you’re down to the last few months, down to the wire. And down to the wire we are. We got the month right and now it’s officially here, the rest must unfold…
I have been working REALLY hard to process all this. And I have made tremendous progress. So much progress that it’s surprising. I’ve probably been at it for a little over a year now in some ways. But not until the last couple of months, after my silent retreat, did I finally enter the cocoon to disintegrate and become transformed into a butterfly. I finally realized during my retreat after much searching, questioning, and leaning into the answers…that SR is no longer serving me and it is time to bid it farewell. It was not an easy realization to arrive it, nor an easy one to then accept, share, and act upon. But I have done all those things, day by day, step by step, I have put the universe’s plan in motion.
And today is no different.
Since I looked at the numbers last night, I have been taking deep breathes. Trying to continue to trust. That is my word this year, trust. “Trust in the Divine Plan” to be exact. I wasn’t willing to stop at one word. I felt the need to be more specific. And the phrase, which I put on a vision board earlier this year at a New Year Day meditation retreat R took me to, has kept me grounded every day over the last 7 months. So I have been breathing, trying not to be shaken, depressed, and hopeless. I have been breathing, trusting, waiting, knowing it will all be okay ultimately. In the past, when we have been close to the wire, it was as if my life would flash in front of me… I’d imagine announcing the end publicly, letting go of my team, closing the doors on our customers, disappointing our investors… It always felt beyond stressful. Having to tell people they no longer have a job is one of the hardest things I’ve had to do. Having to turn away bright-eyed little ones and the grown-ups supporting them is heart-breaking. I handled it last night in a different way, I took deep breathes…and then took some more…and brought my mind back to the exact moment I was in (which was date night, not the most convenient time for a work crisis and definitely not the right time to have clicked on the little email icon on my phone. Lesson learned.)
But today I can’t help but feel a deep sense of mourning.
“Just when you have surrendered, surrender some more…”
Those were the words of Gabrielle Bernstein’s last step of the 5 Steps to Surrender she presented on Oprah’s Soul Session once. They resonated with me when I heard them last week and today they come to life. Just when you’ve mourned, mourn some more. That’s how I feel today…
I’m less sad that it’s all ending and more just grieving that it has officially ended. I know something could come to fruition in the next few weeks, but I can’t help but feel today that it’s over. I have to go into work today and put into action the final plan. The plan of winding down, shutting down, discontinuing, bidding farewell. And it will come as a surprise and shock to the public. We have become an inspiration, a story that so many love to follow and feel uplifted by. And I hope they will continue to feel that way. Because I do. Today I don’t feel disappointment and failure. I feel success. The kind that you can only dream of. But I feel like my kid is all grown up and heading off to college. The time has come for the empty nest. The time has come for me to surrender, to let it spread its wings and fly into the big unknown… And with that, the time has come for me – the parent, the creator – to also step into the unknown of my life journey. I feel a deep sense of gratitude for making it this far. And yet I can’t help but feel a sadness.
I will miss it.
When I went on my retreat, I visited the soul of our company. I know it sounds crazy but I did. It was a beautiful cloud-like creature that was child-like, like a young teen. It lived in a cloud-like hut with a giant stamp-shaped door that looked like our logo. 🙂 – Perhaps someday I’ll write up a post with the entire vision I had. It was a remarkable experience. – What I realized in that vision is that SR will be okay. It will never die. It will live on in the memories of the thousands and thousands of children it impacted. For some, it may have even sparked a new interest or passion that shapes their lives and society’s. I’ve heard from many parents over the years that their kids now love history or are obsessed with drawing, all from a package we delivered. As long as we remember it, it will live on in our memories too. And I will remember it daily, that much I know. It has given me so much. It has changed my life. Through creating this company – as crazy as it sounds – I discovered the meaning of life. This wasn’t just any company, it was special from day one… I created it with my sister. Inspired by our childhoods and our nephews. To deliver joy, curiosity, and love to children everywhere. And the world noticed its light. It landed on national TV weeks after it was born when it was still an infant. – That doesn’t happen often, boy did the world notice. – And it landed on national TV again, and again, and again. It sparkled through all the years that I have had the honor of nurturing it. And as a culmination in its journey, just a week ago, I got to share it with the world on TV again in a very special way on an iconic channel that I grew up watching, QVC. It was another life experience for all of us, for it, for me, for my sister, and for all those who have been part of its story. They say it takes a village and a village has been behind us from the beginning.
Since I went to retreat and started the process of letting it go, it has grown from a young tween to a mature one ready for college. It’s off to do great things. I couldn’t be prouder of what we have built. I couldn’t be more grateful for the opportunity to have made it this far.
I will miss you dearest SR, and you will always be in my heart… Know that if you choose to come back someday – maybe years from now someone will want to license you and introduce you to a new generation of little ones 🙂 – I will be here ready to welcome you with open arms…
With all my love…