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A Tale of Two Direct Sales Moms

Normally, I’m not one to go on about my kids. I like at least a small sense of anonymity and privacy for them, since they didn’t choose to grow up in the limelight or the shadow it casts from being aimed at me.

And while this story isn’t so much about them, they are involved, so I felt it only fair to warn you.

This story, however is a tale of two moms: one’s an ambitious, “big thinker”, who constantly strives to grow her business, builder her “empire” and make the world a better place for her clients and customers. She believes that she’s the best product her company has to offer, and shares her time, talent and treasure to help others make the most of their business.

She does her momly duties, of course: getting up at the crack of dawn, tries to make sure the kids are fed and ready for the trip to school, and even shares her laptop with her 3 year old so he can get a jump start on academics at pbskids.org. She does her best to have dinner cooking and ready by the time her husband arrives home at 5pm and even manages to clean a little: a couple loads of dishes (by hand, of course), and sometimes gets the table set too!

She loves to entertain, has a big house with plenty of room for company and KNOWS how to cook. Her Momma taught her how to make virtually anything from scratch – except anything made with asparagus (her Mom HATED Asparagus), and she’s quite a performer, too. Her haminess runs in the family: both her sons are musical and while her husband couldn’t carry a tune in a bucket, they make for a cute “perfect” family photo.

She works with an INCREDIBLE support team that keeps her business running like a well-oiled machine, even in her sleep.

I’m sure you’ve figured out who this is, but before I do the big reveal, let’s talk about our other mom…

This woman does her best to get to bed at a decent hour each night, but is usually up WAY past her bedtime. She’s always got way too much on her plate, and sometimes finds herself wading through 4,000 emails in her in-box trying to find a message that was sent a while ago that she knows she needs to act on. She loves her two kids dearly, and her husband has his moments, too, but sometimes she’d just love to use the mute button on her remote control to find a little peace and quiet in the home.

She’s lucky if she can find the time to take a shower in the morning, and occasionally brushes her teeth on the drive to take her oldest to school!

This woman is far from perfect. Her childhood is not something she looks back on with many pleasant memories: abuse, loneliness, and not many friends were hidden behind her very intellectual veneer. She’s smart, but was never able to make friends easily, and to this day struggles with strong, lasting friendships.

Her husband and oldest son just don’t see eye to eye, and it’s a horrible point of friction in her family. She insists they fight like brothers, and hates “being in the middle” when things come to a head.

And if that wasn’t difficult enough, now her oldest son is in the hospital. She’s blessed to have a job that allows her to ‘be there’ for him when he needs her most, but struggles with the guilt of not being with her 3 year old son. Hubby’s off at work during the day, and doesn’t like hospitals, so hasn’t visited his step-son much at all. She feels like her support system is crumbling around her ears…

hmm… those two people sound strikingliy different, don’t they?

Yet the are one in the same.

This is probably one of the hardest, and most personal posts I’ll ever make, but I’m at the point where I need to share this because it might just help someone else.

The beauty of direct sales is that we have the power to do as much or as little as we choose in our business. We control our income, our hours and the freedom we make for ourselves in this industry.

It has been an amazing blessing to me this past month as my son has moved in and out of hospitals while they work to find the answers for his pancreatitis.

And ironically, it has been my friends in the industry – my leader, fellow coaches, recruits and my clients and ‘friends’ on Facebook and twitter that have been the most supportive bunch of all.

I’ve gotten emails, calls, tweets and amazing shows of support from people that barely know me in real life. And I can’t get my husband to take a day off from work to help around the house.

To be clear: we are not fighting about this. He has a horrible aversion to hospitals, and he’s extremely busy at work right now. I wish he could be more supportive, but he’s doing the best he can with his situation. Plus, we’re grateful beyond grateful that he hasn’t lost his job yet when so many others are struggling to survive! If it wren’t for his job and his insurance, there’s no telling how God would manage to cover the hospitalization & testing costs.

I’ve done some pretty BIG things this year in the face of a tightening economy – all when people said it couldn’t be done. I took that a God’s message to me that I was in fact heading in the right direction, and fulfilling his will to serve others the best way I knew how: as a direct sales consultant and marketing coach/mentor to the Direct Sales Industry. I’ve even started the ICF certification process to complete the requirements to make that an officially recognized designation.

I have a LOT on my plate – I almost always do. And I don’t mind so much most of the time. I’ve got a fantastic business coach, and a new VA that I love – plus an assistant that’s also a friend of my family and a powerful prayer warrior. I have a handful of really close friends that I know are praying me through all this.

And with the small exception that I wish my husband was a little more accessible, I have a LOT of peace in this whole ordeal. I can be at my son’s bedside in the hospital and work from my laptop, or have a coaching call on my cell phone.

God bless technology!

My 3 year old is well tended by an incredible nanny that is also one of my team recruits for my direct selling business. My income continues to roll in on autopilot, my kids are tended, and I can focus on the needs of my oldest son right now.

But I’m FAR from perfect. There are days when I don’t want to get out of bed – yes even while my kid’s in the hospital. There are days when I don’t even SEE the shower, much less take one (perhaps a little TMI, but hey, it’s trh truth). And I know that the phrase “who has time to exercise” must have been coined by me – I have the spare pounds to prove it.

The office has clutter piles – like the rest of the house. And while I love to entertain, I very rarely do.

I struggle with self-esteem issues, even though I know my business is awesome and I’m serving some amazing women with an amazing mission that I KNOW God put firmly in my heart. I feel like I’m not moving fast enough, not doing near enough, to be the person God has called me to be.

This isn’t a personal plea for people to feel sorry for me, or even to cheer me on. It’s just a statement that I had to make before I exploded all over the place one day. And I figured that if I’m going through this, it’s for a reason, and God placed it on my heart to share it in this manner today.

If I may be selfish for a minute: I want to know what’s wrong with my kid. I want him to be okay, and I want to not have to worry about the cost of getting that answer. I want my husband to participate in all of this and realize how much he’s needed around here. I also want him to know that I understand how he feels and that I’m doing my best to honor him and his needs, too. I want my
business to thrive and flourish and be a example of God’s light in the world.

But most of all, I want to serve. And if this post does that for you, then once again God’s got it goin’ on, because I think that sharing this is one of the most ‘out there’ things I’ve ever done. I started a Facebook group a few weeks ago because He suggested it through a friend, and I’ve been amazed at how on target everything is. I’m learning each day that the more I listen to Him and follow his lead on even the most outrageous things, He provides. He doesn’t fail. There are so many things I feel like I need to be doing on a daily basis, and God keeps it all in perspective. The peace I feel is directly related to a “system” he’s shown me to help keep it all together – even when everything seems to be falling apart.

So it’s a weird way to say thank you, but Thank You. I’ve got over 100 posts on this blog, and I did say there might be an occasional personal post about me or the kids. This was the best way I knew to reach out to all of you and let you know how much your prayers, words and thoughts have been a tremendous blessing this past month.

I know not what God’s next move for me is in the great playbook of life, but I do know that I have to just keep on making the plays, and moving down the field until I reach whatever goal he has planned.

It’s been a crazy start to 2009 – which means I know it’s ging to get even bigger and better as it goes along. I hope you’ll be on the ride with me.