We previously had another blog scheduled to release this week, but as I was sitting here (literally on Thanksgiving morning) feeling an enormous wave of gratitude, I felt it only appropriate to share my somewhat jumbled thoughts...
Over the past year, I started a business, moved home, found love, lost love, quit my corporate job, healed some internal wounds, lost friends, made new friends, heard my dad tell the same story 50 times... I literally feel like I became a new person (and aged a few years...). That's a lot of change and a lot of unknown for one person; but as I look back on every event, every interaction, it's pretty easy to feel grateful because it led me to where I am today.
Hello cliche! But it's true.
I'm thankful for our friends and family. We are truly surrounded by some of the most supportive people anyone, especially a small business, could ask for. I'm thankful for Ryan and Amanda, our amazing photographer team, who drove hours into the desert (and then stayed out there for hours) to shoot our photos... TWICE. I'm thankful for our friends Tate, Caitlin, and Chris who also drove hours into the desert to model all of our apparel for said photo shoots. I'm thankful for all of our loved ones who purchase MCREY apparel, tell their friends about us, repost our content on social media, read our blogs, watch our videos, show up to our events and help us clean up/set up. Some of these things may seem small; but they make a huge difference for us and we appreciate all of them equally.
I'm thankful for Kelly, my sister, best friend, and business partner. I'm thankful that she trusted me months ago (and still trusts me, I think...) to buckle up and ride this crazy rollercoaster of starting a business together. Without her, MCREY would not be successful:
- She is the creative brain behind all of our social media content and the operational engine managing our street apparel.
- This company is the sum of both of us—our relationship as sisters, who we are as individual women, and the life that we live. Without part of that equation, the answer would always be #REF! (A little excel humor for ya...)
I'm thankful for our parents. WOW, I am so thankful for our parents. Truly without them, none of this would have been possible. For anyone who knows us and our family, you know that we are all best friends. Kelly and I spend more time with our parents than with anyone else our age... I mean we call them Chief and Big Kitty so what does that tell ya? I'm thankful for that alone as it's a very rare family dynamic; but mix in the sacrifices our parents have made to help us grow this business and my heart could explode.
When we first started this company, I think they were a little skeptical (honestly, I don't blame them). I imagine, "Is this another project? How far are they going to take this?" circled through their heads on a carousel every day. Nonetheless, they welcomed both Kelly and I home with open arms so we could live rent-free and focus our finances on MCREY. (Although I consider my rent to be listening to my Chief's stories every day, which is a pretty high price!)
We started ordering inventory and they allowed us to use the guest bedroom as a small storage space. Then more apparel, clothing racks, stickers, bags, storage boxes, tents, and banners, were ordered and now the guest bedroom is our full-blown warehouse... hehe whoops!
Our parents have shown up to every single trade show and event thus far. For the Off-Road Expo, Chief literally drove hours to help us set-up on Friday, stayed the night to help us during the day on Saturday, drove back home to pick up mom and more inventory because we sold out, and then drove back to Ontario on Sunday, stayed all day and helped us clean up.
At this time, there is no doubt in my mind that they believe in this company as much as we do. The same goes for our friends, too. We're surrounded by an amazing community and that makes me all the more driven and excited to keep pushing—pushing through the storms, figuring out new ways to maneuver obstacles, and fighting self-doubt.
I'm thankful for the opportunity to chase my dreams, do something that I'm passionate about and grow into the type of woman that I'd be proud to know. Through this journey, I've found a whole new level of self-worth, confidence, strength, patience, grace and humility. I've healed internal wounds that I didn't know existed (still a work in progress, btw). I've removed relationships that no longer serve me, and allowed people to walk away if they felt similarly. Through that, I've been able to open my heart and mind to a bunch of really cool, new friends and experiences.
Now THAT is a lot to be thankful for.
From MCREY HQ to your home, Happy Thanksgiving y'all!