My work life has been severely interrupted in the past year, by cancer treatment, COVID, virtual school, my father passing away, my mom being hospitalized for two months in another state, and then my own surgery and recovery.
I had left a part-time social media position at Burn Boot Camp after my cancer diagnosis back in March, and though it was difficult for me to do, I know now it was absolutely the right choice. Cancer treatment had to take up that space in my head and on my schedule. And really, that made room for me to write about that experience as it was happening, which was so important to my processing.
Likewise, my sign painting business was hit or miss throughout the year as well, because I just wasn't always available and in town or physically healthy enough to do the actual painting. Since it's a business I own and run, I was able to pause and re-start that as I was capable throughout the year. While that wasn't ideal (or as profitable as I would have liked), thankfully I have a lot of very understanding and loyal and patient customers!
After the year of incredible stress we've had and then my own surgery and recovery, I just wasn't sure what my work life was going to look like in 2021. I wasn't sure I'd be physically able to continue painting signs (or if I wanted to)--and to be honest, I needed a good long break with nothing occupying my brain space. It really took me all of November and December to get back to feeling like myself, not so overwhelmed with life, and ready to tackle something new (or even my old responsibilities). I'm very glad that I took that time to just rest and recover. I needed it. Badly.
When I left my position at Burn Boot Camp
in March, I wasn't sure what my future would look like and whether I'd ever have the head space or physical time to return to that position--or if it would even be available. But, I'm pleased and grateful to say that as of January 1st, I've returned to the Burn Boot Camp team as the Social Media & Brand Manager for both the Hoover and Homewood gyms. In this position (which is an upgrade from my previous role), I get to do a lot of writing, content scheduling, graphic design, advertising and marketing--all things I've been doing for my own businesses for the past 20 years, between the old Scrapjazz days and SignsByAndrea. I get to promote and talk about and interact with an organization that I am passionate about and excited about sharing with other women.
Over the past month, I have thoroughly enjoyed getting to (again) work with some of my closest friends and having the opportunity to combine my interests and talents to promote health and confidence to women in our city. We have a VERY talented team (not all pictured below) and it's an honor to be able to work alongside them. This past month we launched the new gym in Homewood
, and even in the midst of the struggles that come with running a business in the pandemic, it has been a raging success in it's first month, largely due to the talent and diligence of this team.
For me, it's been a wonderful (and welcome) return to socialization and working on a team, and thinking about OTHER women and their health instead of just my own!
And, while it has taken me a little longer than I expected it to, this past week I have finally felt ready to return to painting signs. I painted my first round of the year this week, and it felt very good to create something with my hands again!
Whether or not the feeling lasts (because I've learned not to count on anything until it happens), it finally feels like I'm gaining my footing back and feeling like ME. I'm looking forward to fun things in 2021...as long as it continues to cooperate!