Updated: Jan 25, 2021
Here I am, after almost 2 years, and writing again. Today, my words will be a bit different to those of the past. I’d like to share with you what has happened to me during this time and who I am now.
When I moved to Abu Dhabi in 2017 I started my own project, always a little unsure if that was really what I wanted to do. I started by creating a website, a blog, becoming a guest speaker in conferences and networking, but... I felt lonely and insecure given I had no prior experience in running a business of my own. Without actively looking for customers, they appeared and I helped them the best way I knew how too. Over time I realised I wanted to move back to a corporate life, to a place where I felt safe and comfortable again given I had always worked for others and believed that was my happy place.
I moved back to working in retail but this time in the franchising business. It was a wonderful experience: I could meet a lot of people (super nice people) from all over the world. I learned a lot about business and to be honest, it made me realise just how much I missed the day to day of retail.
In April of 2018 I found out that I was pregnant. My life during pregnancy didn't change much. I was working until I was 8 and a half months pregnant but when the time came, and I held my baby daughter in my arms I started questioning whether I should or not return to work.
She was so little and I thought she was too fragile to leave it. My questions around were: Should I come back to work? she will survive without me? Am I being a good mother? on the other hand, another type of questions were showing up: What if I lose my job and I cannot find something else in the future? Am I giving up all the hard work I've been doing the last 12 years?
Finally, I came to the conclusion it would be best to go back to the office and thinking about it now I strongly believe it was the best decision I could have taken. Working again helped me come back to myself much quicker. I was engaging with people (I think I love to be with people!), I felt productive again and felt I was back to conversations where not all topics evolved around baby stuff. But .. there is alway a but .. I started to feel sad every day on my way to the office and from that moment onwards I knew deep inside that something was not going well. I kept telling myself this was just a phase.
It was not only about leaving my baby at home it was something about feeling realized: feeling myself doing what I always loved to do: work in Retail, leading teams, inspire others, make things happen.
Still today I cannot find the correct answer why I was feeling that sadness when I was reaching the office but if I can tell you something is that I was not me anymore. I was someone just letting the life go day to day. I was being conformist an unhappy in terms of career.
And then.... Coronavirus arrived in our lives. As you may know, the retail business at a global scale was drastically affected. Stores were closed for much longer than ever before. At this time I was forced out of the business BUT, do you know what? I felt relieved.
The ones who know me very well they know I always say: Life takes care of you. And again life took care of me and I took the opportunity to stop and think, and dream, and reflect.