THEY SAID, WELCOME TO THE WORLD.

…But Mum was just so happy I was no longer in her tummy.

 

THEY SAID, LOOK AT YOU GO.

… But they didn’t realise that in a year’s time, they’ll have to teach me how to walk and talk again.

 

THEY SAID, SOMETHING’S NOT RIGHT.

….But they didn’t quite know just how serious it was about to become.

 

THEY SAID, YOUR SICK.

… But they had no time to waste. It wasn’t just a cold, or croup. It was life-threatening. And we needed the doctor. Now.

 

THEY SAID, IT’S MENINGITIS.

… But it’s not viral, it’s bacterial. And that is bad, bad news.

 

THEY SAID, YOU’RE LUCKY TO BE ALIVE.

… But they didn’t know if I would be lucky enough to walk crawl away unscathed.

 

THEY SAID, YOU’RE SUCH A NAUGHTY CHILD.

… But they didn’t fully appreciate that my stubbornness and determination was a trait that would serve me well.

 

THEY SAID, YOU’RE NOT LISTENING.

… But they had a sneaking suspicion that there was more to it.

 

THEY SAID, YOU’RE PARTIALLY DEAF.

… But it can change over time. Never better, always worse.

 

THEY SAID, YOU’LL BE FINE AT SCHOOL.

… But they didn’t realise that having ‘things’ in her ears would make her a prime candidate for playground ‘fun’.

 

THEY SAID, YOU’RE SO BOSSY.

… But they didn’t realise that I just didn’t have the tolerance for playground shit (clearly never been a small talker).

 

THEY SAID, YOU’RE PRETTY GOOD AT NETBALL.

… But yeah. Yeah, I was alright.

 

THEY SAID, KEEP PLAYING.

… But I didn’t have the drive to be a professional netballer. I just wanted to play with my friends.

 

THEY SAID, HIGH SCHOOL WILL BE BETTER.

… But they couldn’t know that it was going to be the best years of my life.

 

THEY SAID, YOU’RE DOING WELL.

… But with an older brother for a genius, I always felt I wasn’t anything special.

 

THEY SAID, GO TO UNIVERSITY.

… But it ended up being four long years of hell.

 

THEY SAID, YOU’RE GOING ON PLACEMENT.

… But they paired me with the most insensitive supervisor in the world who watched over every single thing I did, leading me to break down in tears one day saying ‘I can’t do this’.

 

THEY SAID, KEEP AT IT.

… But didn’t they know how humiliating it is to not be able to call my patients on the phone? How much SHE humiliated me? How could I do this job if I can’t do the one thing EVERYBODY can do: use telephones?

 

THEY SAID, WE’LL SUPPORT YOU.

… But only if I completed my degree. Just as long as I completed my degree. Ok then.

 

THEY SAID, YOU’RE ONLY JUST PASSING.

… But I’m not stupid. I just wasn’t interested in it. Let’s go on a four-day bender instead.

 

THEY SAID, YOU DID IT. YOU GRADUATED.

… But now I had to get a job.  As an Occupational Therapist.

 

THEY SAID, YOU’RE SUCH A WILD CHILD.

… But of course I was. 

 

THEY SAID, YOU’RE A BIT LOST.

… But of course I was.

 

THEY SAID, YOU’RE HIRED.

… But shit. What do I wear?

 

THEY SAID, YOU’RE SUCH A QUIET ACHIEVER

… But gosh I was bored. My intuitive, innovative brain had nothing to do.

 

THEY SAID, TIME TO STEP IT UP.

… But I’d rather move to the coast and have a sweet lifestyle. So I did.

 

THEY SAID, GET A JOB. AGAIN

… But there wasn’t any in my industry except for a part-time job that would be a ‘setback’ career-wise.

 

THEY SAID, YOU’RE HIRED.

… But I’d so much rather spend more time at the beach with my pup and boy. Give me a couple days only.

 

THEY SAID, WORK MORE.

… But I started to find some excitement elsewhere.

 

THEY SAID, WHAT ARE YOU DOING?

… But I didn’t even know. I just knew I had to go my own way. Create my own career, my own employment.

 

THEY SAID, YOU LOOK SO HEALTHY.

… But my bank account was dwindling along side my waist line.

 

THEY SAID, YOU’RE BECOMING SO POPULAR ONLINE!

… But I still had a long way to go until I made some leeway with my business.

 

THEY SAID, YOU’RE BUILDING A HOUSE.

… But gosh, I’ll never want to do that again. I built a house – and gained about 10kgs with it.

 

THEY SAID, YOUR HOUSE IS AMAZING.

… But the amount of sweat and tears and long sleepless nights of doing this on one tiny income was the stuff of nightmares. But you’re right, it is amazing.

 

THEY SAID, YOU’VE DONE SO MUCH FOR A 20-SOMETHING YEAR OLD.

… But they don’t realise that I couldn’t have done it without the help of my family and Tim. In more ways than one.

 

THEY SAID, YOU’VE CHANGED YOUR BUSINESS.

… But at its core, it’s still the same. I’m all about turning inspiration into action and helping women become independent. I may deliver it in different ways – and I bet I’ll come up with more ways to do this – but I’ve never wavered from my Why.

 

THEY SAID, YOU’RE BUSINESS IS THRIVING

… But they still can’t seem to grasp and appreciate that keeping it thriving is neverending. The hustle is real – and will always be real.

 

NOW THEY SAY… YOU’RE SO SUCCESSFUL.

… But they can’t see the hours I put in, the loneliness I feel when I’m working alone in the office, the tears that drop when I make a mistake, the bottomless pit of fear that strikes at any given time, the scars on my back from my ‘stress picking’, the ache of my shoulders from spending too much time on my laptop, the embarrassment I feel everytime I have to ask someone to make a phone call for me, the nerves I get everytime I try something completely new, the face palm I give myself when I give in and don’t do something new, the feeling of exclusion when my girlfriends catch up without me because I’m so far away. 

 

… But you’re right. I am successful. Because my definition of success is to be independent, doing the work I love and creating new life-enriching experiences. Being successful, for me, is knowing that no matter how hard it gets, I keep on trucking on. The hustle is my friend.

 

And that means I feel like the richest girl in the world.