Friday, November 2, 2007

Magnolias help people breathe.

And so does doing what you want to for your life.

I have to say that deciding to sell my family glass business and make jewelry for a living is one of the best decisions I have ever made for myself. The last two years have been rather draining. I worked at County Glass for five years, owning it for four. My mind would wonder. Everyday I would come up with a new scheme of how I was going to get out of that business. My brother was supposed to buy it, I was supposed to come in streamline everything on the computer and then move on. Metalsmithing masters at SIUE or something like that. But, Mr. smarty pants brother decided he did not want the business and guess who was next in line. An offer I couldn't refuse. I would have the business for ten years, it would be paid off and I could sell it. It came with all of the employees, except my brother. Most of them had worked there for 20 years. Little old me was in charge of men who worked for this business for 20 years. Isn't that funny. I day dreamed about becoming a metalsmith, but did not think it would make the bills. Some how I settled on a Master's in Social Work. For some reason that was a compromise in my head. I could not quit County Glass to become a metalsmith, but to become a Social Worker was acceptable. I was accepted into the Wash U program. That was it! It was my out. I told my parents who took it pretty hard, offered the guys who worked there for 20 years to buy the business and we were on our way! Or not. I finished my first semester at Wash U. I loved it, but all I could think about was making jewelry. After my first semester the deal still hadn't gone through for the sale of the business and I decided that Wash U was too expensive and I was going to drop everything to make jewerly for a living. This was a year after I had told the guys that it was theirs if they wanted it. There were too many parties involved in the sale. I still owed my ma and dad who had very conveniently divorced right after I bought County Glass. I desperately tried to negotiate the sale, with no luck when finally in April of 2006 the guys said they weren't going to buy it. Uhg! Meanwhile, Steve and I had gotten engaged in New York! That's the Mullberry Street Bar where they used to film the Sopranos. Aren't we a couple of gangsters?

Upon the news that the guys weren't going to buy the business I decided to stay. It was a lucrative business and I figured I should get responsible since I was getting married. The little responsibility voice in my head. Sometimes I think I should ignore that voice. I tried to put my heart into it. I tried hard, but it was so hard because i was so miserable there. It was a very difficult business. Glass breaks and people who buy glass don't care, they just want their glass. I can't remember the timeline anymore, but soon the guys came to me and said they were giving me their two weeks, starting their own business in competition to County Glass. Double Uhg! Without the two of them, the business was nothing. I am perfectly incapable of lifting the huge sheets of glass that it took to install shower doors. I cried and cried and cried. I thought my life was going to end. I don't know why I was so upset, because in the end I talked them into buying the darn thing. One week of heavy negotiations between my rents, Gary and Jeff and the sale went through. One week...that's all it took in the end. I was extremely nervous to drop everything and start on the jewelry, but I wouldn't change it for the world. If you are considering getting out of the rat race, I for one highly recommend it.

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