When I attended Tennessee State University in 2007, I was 20 years-old and had not a clue as to what I wanted to do in life. All I knew is that I wanted to write and be in front of an audience. I decided to major in Mass Communications with a concentration in Journalism and Marketing.
I attended TSU for three years before I made a conscious decision to transfer my studies to the University of Memphis to maintain a five-year engagement with my first love. Months after I returned home, we eventually broke things off due to my blossoming career. I was massively depressed, so to shake it off I worked tirelessly to build my brand. During this time I met with tons of power players and music artists which helped me boost my name in the local music industry. As my career soared, so did a quick magical romance that later turned into a disaster. While learning that my then boyfriend struggled with a heroin addiction, I also found out that I was two-months pregnant with our first child. I immediately put my career on hold and decided to focus on my family.
Bills were piling up and money was scarce, but that didn’t stop the joy that came from the birth of my son Braylon on January 4, 2014. Hours after his birth, he was diagnosed with a condition called pulmonary stenosis which required heart surgery. Defeated and broken, I faced my son’s surgery alone as his father left and disappeared without a trace.
The surgery was a success; however, the struggle of being a single mother really took its toll. Over the next couple of years, I worked odd jobs to pay the bills which took a lot of time from my son. Day by day it felt like my dreams were slipping away from me. I sat around every night and planned every inch of my life on how I could incorporate my brand into my work. In September 2016, I took on a job as a freight payment account manager for a fortune 500 company. I excelled as I closed major accounts for clients like Nintendo that were worth over 2.3 million dollars. I was promoted heavily and my salary increased, even though I didn’t have any formal accounting experience.
One day as I stared out my office window from the 15th floor, I began to think about the things that truly made me happy. I was fearful but I could no longer suffer. I wanted my business and I was ultimately ready to make the sacrifice. Although I had a great salary nothing compared to my happiness. At 29, I could no longer waste any more time. So when I left for lunch, so did my tenure with my company. It was the most refreshing feeling I’ve ever felt in my entire life! With only a few small contacts I managed to link up with my mentor Nina Allen-Johnson who motivated me to get back into writing. She insisted that I write for The New Tri-State Defender, a large African American syndicated newspaper as a freelance Sports Reporter. I’m honored to now be the only African American female sports reporter in my city!
My business, Dollface PR and Image and Brand Solutions, has also taken off like a rocket! I cater to entrepreneurs and businesses that are in need of marketing strategies. While networking I met major fashion designer Demetrius Blayde, owner of Demi Blvck Designs, where he asked me to come on board as his publicist. I’ve booked tons of shows and closed several investment deals! Right now we’re gearing up for Dallas and Memphis Fashion Weeks where he’s a featured designer.
Taking a leap of faith has been the best thing I’ve ever done for myself. I’m not exactly where I want to be financially but my happiness is on a different level. Just waking up in the morning feels different. I have more time for my son and I truly call the shots in my life. I’m traveling and meeting new people. Having control over my life makes everything I went through so worth it! I love being a BAUCE. I can’t stress enough for single mothers and women alike to do things that make you happy! Be determined! If you’re stagnant, do something different! Doing the same thing yet expecting different results is insanity. Stop making excuses for the things you can change and leave the things you can’t change to God. Those are the keys to success. Be faithful and stay dedicated.
Life is happiness.