I left a 6 figure income to follow my dreams

Updated: Sep 10, 2019


This isn’t a blog post about a get rich quick scheme, a 30 day magical plan that will make you a millionaire overnight or a blog that ends in a fairy tale of complete happiness and career success, well, not yet anyway. This is my life. This is a story of the path I chose to take because as a mother I felt it was my duty (haha I said duty) to teach my son that it is never too late to live a life in full authentic happiness and that we can have anything we want in this life if we believe in ourselves and work hard. This story is full of tears, heartbreak, uncertainty, doubt, unknowns, but more importantly, faith, belief, hard work, facing adversity, overcoming adversity and a woman, me, who chose to follow her life long dreams while life as she knew it crumbled around her.

My Actor Headshot - but is that even me?

As far back as I can remember I’ve always known I wanted to be an Actor. At 4/5 years old I would interrupt family gatherings so I could put on performances. I would make everyone sit around me and I’d create a stage for myself complete with a television remote for a microphone. Family would ask me, what do you want to be when you grow up and I’d say “an actress”. There was no doubt in my voice, no “umm” or “errmm”, it was matter of fact. It was a known. It was engrained so deeply into my mind, body and soul. I always knew my calling was to be an actor. I loved the arts, I loved becoming other characters, I loved singing, I loved dancing, I loved the dramatics.


But in my world, full of immigrant families who left everything behind to find stability financially and otherwise in Canada, acting was not a career, not a job, not a money making machine. It was just an idea. Often times my family would respond with a sweet little chuckle, a pat on the head and a “that’s good you have dreams, but what do you really want to do?” or “how will you make money to support your mom and your future children?” or “you will never become famous only rich americans become famous”. They all meant well, they just didn’t have my vision, my aspirations and so they couldn’t see that at 5 years old I truly believed I was capable of becoming a successful actor.



The dream stayed alive like a well lit fire guiding my choices in extra circular activities all through my youth. In elementary school I participated in choir, played the piano and acted in school plays. I wanted to do more, like take dance lessons and acting classes, but the resources weren’t there to help guide my parents or I. I would write songs, poems, sing late at night and envision myself acting in front of the camera.


Acting as Jacob in Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat

However, there were several pivotal moments in my life that where responsible for dimming that fire I had within. It started out with those career quizzes, they recommended only taking them once, but I remember doing them over and over again to see if “ACTOR” would come up as a possible option, it never did. Then there was my grade 9 vocal teacher who not so gently told me “you should take up an instrument next semester.” Then there was my family who didn’t understand the totality of my career choice and how to support me moving forward. Subconsciously self doubt started to take over. As the pressure started to build in high school as to what career path I would take in University or College, I started looking at what other career options where available to me.


I ended up settling and decided to study Radio Broadcasting. It still gave me the opportunity to pursue the arts but it was a more “realistic” career choice. Back then, I guess, it allowed me to fulfil that desire of performing so I assumed it would make me happy, in hindsight I now believe this is where my ambition, my desire to be an Actor was completely removed from the forefront and categorized under “a dream”.


I graduated from Humber College with a Radio Broadcasting diploma and quickly realized that industry was not for me. Broadcasting on the radio vs. Acting have few similarities and many differences. This lead me on a wild goose chase to find a new career in my early 20’s. I tried banking, furniture sales, serving, bartending, interior decorating and finally at the age of 25 was offered a career in IT Sales by an incredibly ambitious, intelligent, successful, driven motivator, who was a female and also happened to be the GM and VP of the company I would work for, for 5 years.


I busted my ass off as an Inside Account Manager. I quickly moved up in the ranks. The industry back then was dominated by males and there I was this female determined to get to the top. I worked 12 hour days, engulfed myself in all things technology, even though business nor technology was a strong suit of mine, but I did it because it was an opportunity for me to make a boat load of money in my mid/late 20’s.


Fast forward a couple of years, I fell in love, got pregnant, got super freakin' hormonal (pregnancy does that to us women FYI) and after many discussions and a series of events, my then partner and I made the decision I would be a stay at home mom. I relished the idea of being with my baby and finally finding a career that not only fed my passions but also fed my wallet.


The first design I created for my clothing line

I toyed with the idea of going back to acting, but again, where was the certainty in money, where was the consistent paycheque, the guarantee etc. After dabbling in a few things, I again settled and started a kids clothing line. I loved the idea of designing cute clothes, I poured my heart into it. Late hours, all nighters, working with Charlie in my arms, figuring out what it meant to own my own business etc. However, once my journey into single motherhood started I quickly realized my clothing line, which had not yet generated a profit, would not financially sustain Charlie, myself and our new family member Willow.


Thanks to a friend, I was given the opportunity to interview for a similar IT Sales position as I had before, but at another company. Motivated by the fear of not being able to independently financially support my son and our dog, I moved forward. I got the job. Again, I settled. What I had failed to realize is I didn’t have 12-14 hours a day to work, learn and study technology. I didn’t have a ton of free evenings to attend networking events. I had been MIA from the IT industry for 2+ years. I had zero understanding of all the new, different technology. How different selling technology was compared to when I had my success. How much technology had evolved and how little I really understood it’s evolution. Most importantly, I had a son now. He was my priority and he needed me more than ever. I tried juggling, learning all the new technology that was out there, being a mom full-time, raising a puppy, running my clothing line and trying to balance some self care in between. I failed.


Maybe my pride got the best of me and I was in denial, but I sucked at the job. In January 2018 the sales team I was on was restructured and my position was rendered redundant.

I cried that day. I had failed my son, our family. Or had I? I started putting feelers out there, speaking with head hunters seeing if I could fit into the corporate IT Sales Industry meanwhile prioritizing my role as a mother. I had been a stay at home mom for 2 years after all and I had seen how much Charlie benefited from it.


Nothing fit.


While continuing to have feelers on the side I started brainstorming, remembering dreams, visions I had and one day it dawned on me. Maybe nothing fit and the right opportunity hadn’t shown up because I didn’t fit. Because I wasn’t meant to be in IT anymore. It’s like trying to force a relationship to work when it’s done. It doesn’t matter how hard you try or how much you push, it just doesn’t work out because the pieces don't fit.



So there I was, a single mom, who had stayed at home for the last two years,

whose clothing line had suffered, who had limited income, bills piling up, a child, a dog and a cat (RIP Meow). I wanted that career I had dreamed of years ago, that allowed me to balance time at home with my son and be financially independent. So guess what I did. I said f*ck it. I’ve got nothing to lose and everything to gain. I was a stay at home mom again but this time it was different. The universe was forcing me into this direction because it always had been, I just let doubt and “real” career choices take over. I never wanted to accept the signs, I didn’t want to learn the lessons, I kept settling because of fear and the universe had had enough of my BS.


I started the YouTube Channel. I started focusing on what it meant to be a Content Creator on Instagram. I upped my Pinterest game. I started understanding how to pitch to brands so I could make money using my creativity. I started this blog. I used all the skills and knowledge I had from previously being a creative person and put them to use. I looked into acting courses. I was in action, taking care of Charlie and Willow during the day and recording, editing, writing and doing a whole lot of work during the evenings, well into the night and early morning the next day.


There I was finally following my dreams of being an Actor and Content Creator, but life around me was crumbling. I lost people I thought where friends because they wouldn’t support my “stupid” dreams. My family called me crazy. Through it all I learned to ignore the nay sayers. I learned that my intuition and my ability to believe in myself out weighs anyone’s opinion. While I lost people in my life I thought where important, I gained a circle of advocates, supporters, cheerleaders and individuals who believed in me and helped me however they could in order for me to make my dreams a reality.


Today I’m proud to share that I’m one step closer to that Academy Award. Baby steps my friends, but I landed my first opportunity to be on TV. Shhhh can’t spill all the deets just yet. Here I am 27+ years later doing what I love and building a career that I am 10000% confident I am successful in and I still get to spend tons of time with Charlie. I’ve learned that money is not the root of happiness, but following something that you're so deeply passionate about is. It also eventually brings you money as well, so there's that. I’ve learned to believe in myself above all else and to not seek approval in others but only in myself. I've learned to remain humble through the process. I’ve learned to spread my wings as wide and as far as they go and to fly into action because the universe always has our backs. I've learned to never, ever settle for anything less than everything I've ever wanted and believe I deserve, for myself and for my family.


Missing from this photo: Willow

As a mother I have not failed my son. On the contrary, I taught him dreams do come true. I have taught him that resilience, self belief and hard work do pay off and most importantly that settling never has to be an option. He will always be encouraged and supported in whatever career he wishes to pursue. He will always have my unconditional support to do what makes him happy and fulfills him. I will never try and force him to fit into something he does not belong to.


As a woman, my goal is to inspire those who are too afraid to take a leap into the unknown. If I can do it when all the odds where stacked against me so can you. It won't be easy, it will take lots of hard work, you will be tested, but it is 100% possible. Whatever dreams you have darling, they can and should become your reality.


This is my journey of starting over and it's just the beginning. I am so freaking excited for what life has in store for my little family and I and I'm forever in gratitude that this is the path I was given and that I found the courage to take it.


It is never ever too late to let go of fear and love the life you live.


xo

C.


#abusesurvivor #womenprenuer #believeinyou #believeinmagic #chasethosedreams #lovethelifeyoulive #entreprenuer #letgooffear #goaldigger #followyourdreams #thatsinglemom #singlemomlife #singlemomsrule


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