going the distance. out-of-the-box ideas. and keeping the faith.

February 21, 2011 § 19 Comments

Last night was one of those sad drives from the airport — a recurring event in my life.  O.T. flew back to California and I’m in withdrawal.  For two and a half years, I’ve coped with a long distance relationship by repressing the matter from my consciousness.  But there are times like today when all worries are rampant.

It dawned on me: I have not seen California in five and a half months!  That is a record.  O.T. has been making the sacrifices to come to my neck of the woods.  He has spent a total of a month’s worth of time in Toronto over the past four months alone.  It adds up to a lot of time away from home.  Come to think of it, last year in the nine months between January and September, I spent a combined three and a half months in California.  In all of 2010, between the two of us, we spent nearly five months combined of being away from our own respective homes.  Five months out of twelve!  In the past two and a half years, we’ve probably spent nearly a combined ten months on vacation.  THAT is how we go the distance.

But things are changing.  Back in the fall, I put my wedding stationery business on hiatus indefinitely, due to a combination of an expired business license, a feeble economy, burn-out, and a dying dream.  As of last month, I terminated the website for good.  It’s been a big decision and a long time coming.

I look back and my eyes well up.   Four and a half years ago, shy of my 27th birthday, I gave my two weeks’ notice at my steady job at a civil engineering firm.  I was armored with the hope that I would beat the odds (what is it — 99% of small businesses fail?).  Well, it wasn’t going to happen to me.  And not to out-of-the-box ideas (it stings to mention the name now, which I admit I’ve deliberately avoided since starting this blog).  Within eighteen months, I suffered burn-out and slowly and surely lost my will, but continued with numbness for three more long years.  In hindsight, I understand how I met my failure.  I was good when things were good, but I was an utter disaster when the littlest things were awry.  I simply didn’t have the maturity to trudge through hardship at the time.

The beauty is I went through some of my most creative moments while steering the course of my own ship. I know I had great things to offer, but I also know I still had a lot of growing up to do.  One day, I’ll be back and I’ll do it right.

I am blessed with good graces.  And I rest assured the higher powers-that-be are watching over me and making sure of my survival.  Just days after I closed down the website for out-of-the-box ideas, three weeks ago I got two important calls from two unrelated companies (a school and a civil engineering firm) with offers of employment. The real miracle is that I didn’t seek them out.  (Have faith that when the time is right, things do fall on our laps).  Even more miraculous is that both companies are willing to work around my current part-time teaching schedule (which I’ve had for almost three school years).  So for now, until further notice, I juggle three jobs, a blog, and small steps towards a sideline in freelance writing.  I am blessed and ever grateful.

Now with my life drastically changing, how do we narrow the distance between me and O.T.?   As I have done all my life, I am keeping the faith.

§ 19 Responses to going the distance. out-of-the-box ideas. and keeping the faith.

  • David Juan says:

    Aw, I am sad to hear that Out Of The Box Ideas is done with but am glad that you have so much going on in your life right now. So were my invites and stationary some of your last to make?

    • Jeromina says:

      Hi David,
      Me, too. It just wasn’t where it was supposed to be after 4.5 years. 😦 Yep, your invites were some of the last for out-of-the-box ideas. Thanks for letting me be a part of your wedding! 🙂

  • Oh honey…you are such an AMAZING woman! I’m so proud of your career and integrating all your creative ideas into your life despite a background in something completely different. If it’s meant to be with O.T. it will….keep the faith girl, you got it!

  • Linda says:

    I have so enjoyed your blog since I found you just a couple of months ago. I am convinced that you will prosper in all the facets of your life. You and O.T. are cute together and I think it is meant to be. Here’s hoping you can spend more time together as time goes by.

    xoxo Linda

    • Jeromina says:

      Hi Linda,
      Thank you so much for your kind words of encouragement. I have lots of hope remaining. And I will give life all that I’ve got, even if it means stumbling along the way. 😀

  • michele says:

    I read your post this morning and it hit home for me. I just recently, after three and a half years, decided to let go of my dream and close my storefront. I was attempting to run my store, work my real full-time job, raise two kids, and have a life…three years of one day off to relax, which ultimately was full to the brim of all the things I should be doing. I want to say thanks for posting this as it gives me hope that I made the right decision, and to just have faith in the fact that life will give me what I need. Best wishes to you and your journey.

    • Jeromina says:

      Hi Michele,
      I just went over to your site. I’m sorry about the closing of your shop. Know you are not alone and things do happen for the right reasons. Life has many good surprises ahead! I have to say, I am so impressed that you were able to juggle your shop along with a full-time job and a family. You are one tough woman! That goes to show that you will have success whatever direction you take. And with some consolation, there is much success online without any of the headaches of running a bricks & mortar shop, so you’ll be just fine. 😀
      Thank you for your well wishes.

  • Melanie says:

    Was just reading your post and all the comments. I had no idea you designed stationery and cards! So talented! Well, when God closes a door he always opens a window. I know you’ll come through like a champ. Talent like yours has to be shared!
    Thanks for starting your new blog. You are doing great! Keep the faith!
    Your crafty friend,
    Melanie at ewehooo!

    • Jeromina says:

      Melanie, I should be soliciting you for advice on the successful running of a stationery business! Your work is truly amazing.
      Many thanks for always being such a joyful supporter of my blog. Reading yours is always an inspiration! 😀

  • Ann says:

    I’m glad you put trust in the Man above. It is through the challenges that you learn about yourself & find out how strong your spirit truly is. I am admiring your work & wish you all the best:)

    • Jeromina says:

      Many thanks for the well wishes, Ann. Life would be so bland without all those challenges, so I’ll keep taking them on to build up my armor — an iron will. 😀

  • Yetunde says:

    Wow you’re dealing with a lot. It can be hard to let go of a dream you held dear, but at least you knew when to let go and allow a new dream to make itself known. Whatever you come uP with next will be made better from the sum of your experience.
    As for O.T, is it possible for one of you to move? Good luck with everything!

    • Jeromina says:

      Oh, how I wish it were that easy to move. I need a valid reason to be there if I want to get past U.S. Immigration. I know stories of people who are married and still cannot move in with their spouse living in the U.S. One day, I will be there. Wish it were sooner.

  • Nidhi says:

    Wow! Brilliantly written and love your spirit. Something similar is happening to me and your post has really put my faith back in the box! Thanks. 🙂

    • Jeromina says:

      Hi Nidhi,
      Thank you for stopping by and reading my little story of overcoming stumbling blocks. I’m glad to put faith back in the box. I wish you all the best!!! 😀

  • […] I wrote my recent post about all the goings-on in my life, things changed dramatically in a matter of weeks and I am now getting over the shock of returning […]

  • Dee says:

    Hi Jeromina – so I have been searching all over the net to find “out-of-the-box-ideas'” website… you created my friend’s invitation back in 2007 and I loved them (michelle/mario) – my other friend is getting married so I have been making a speadsheet of all the vendors she can contact and I have been on a hunt for you – so sad to hear about your business closing :0( On a positive side, I looked through your blog and you have some pretty interesting craft ideas, Im in transition right now to get into the school boards – so I’m definitely keeping the blog handy for creative arts n’ crafts ideas!
    Thanks, D.

  • […] this would be so hard!  Especially after designing handmade stationery for over 150 weddings in my designer days.  I discovered, amidst the arduous task of making my own invitations, that it is a million times […]

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