This year has been hard.
There. It’s official. That is my truth. I’ve had a hard year.
I’ve been hurt in ways I never thought possible, by people I never thought capable. I've cried myself to sleep and slept through weeks I don’t remember. I gave up hope on things getting better and lived in a state of depression and aching anxiety. It was a miserable existence.
Slowly, very slowly, the sun started to peek through the clouds and I was able to take each day one at a time. I put one foot in front of the other and started to work away the numbness that had plagued me for weeks.
Then I was given a gift. A friend reached out to me and shared that she'd been going through the same thing. From that day on, I knew I had a companion in this. We knew each other’s hearts. We were walking the same path. She doesn’t know it but her friendship meant the world. That when she reached out during her own time of grief, she was offering a ray of sunshine for those days where all I saw were clouds.
A few weeks later, someone else reached out to me and the flood gates opened. Women I’d known for months, years, or whom I’d never met at all began to pour out their hearts. They shared their pain, loss, and compassion. When I looked around, I realized that there are so many of us struggling alone during times when we need each other the most. Their outreach taught me what a gift it can be to have a companion as we navigate uncharted waters.
It was then that I made a change. I realized that we need to raise each other up every chance we get. No matter our story. Moms. Wives. Girls. Daughters. Girl Bosses. Women.
The Mercantile became a supporter of made in the USA products to help family businesses thrive. We forged partnerships and friendships with other Girl Bosses to have each other's backs. We reached out to young women who would be our future leaders and asked for their insight. We began to share our truth with each other.
Shit gets hard. Life is not pretty. It is undoubtedly messy and chaotic. There are going to be days where you don’t feel like enough. Here is the secret. It is ok to ask for help. To take a break from things that aren’t serving you. To lean in to someone who wants to be there for you. To say, "I don't got this." We want to be there on those days. We want to be the friend that walks beside you offering a little bit of sun through a sky of clouds. So, here is what we are going to do.
Each month we will put together 'a gift of help' (with the amazing Girl Bosses of Bellevue) to share the love we’ve been given by all of you. Self care is important and some days self care means saying, help. If you know of someone who needs a little extra love in their world, submit their story below and we’ll send out a care package to someone each month.
I want you to know that we are here for you. There will be times you'll want to give up. Look for small wins during times you experience big hurt. Find others around you and lean in. You can overcome this. But for those days when you just can't, we will have your back.