08/02/2020 The start of a new chapter
This week marks the first week after eight and half years where I don’t have the cushion of being employed by a massive corporate company and all the benefits that come with that. A very surreal feeling as I didn’t leave an office or have a goodbye with colleagues face to face in the office. I literally shut one computer one evening and opened a new computer the next morning. A different e-mail address and a totally new mission and vision. From now on ideas don’t come from the top of the organisation, I am the organisation, I need to come up with the ideas. Today is the real start of Sophie Says!
There I was so excited to start when on the weekend Asher came down with a nasty cold. It wasn’t COVID-19 for sure but he was feeling under the weather and super cuddly. There was no way he could go to nursery so day one of my new chapter went very differently to how I thought it would be. I had all these calls booked in with interesting people who I could learn so much from. My husband and I compared calendars to see what meetings we could potentially move and what had to stay. We moved multiple meetings to coincide with the afternoon nap (thank goodness for the nap, can we keep it forever?!) and managed to finish some of what we had to get done.
As if it couldn’t have been made any clearer to me, on day one, the constant battle between trying to be a good mum but also run a successful business begins. Trying to find that balance and not get to the end of the day and feel like you have done neither well and feeling like a total failure.
But I keep thinking of you, what you would say to me. You would be so kind and gentle and say, Esther its day one, be kind to yourself. One of my most vivid memories of you is you wrapped up all warm with your hat, gloves and fleece on ready to go for a run or just coming back from a run. You always used to tell me how good it felt and how it made you feel better after doing a run. I would always smile politely and say to you I couldn’t run if I tried! But the past few weeks leading up to starting Sophie Says full time I kept thinking about you saying “Esther be kind to yourself”.
Last year I was anything but kind to myself. I worked long hours, I didn’t sleep well at all, I took no time for myself, I ate badly and I run myself down so much I got shingles and even then, I didn’t feel I could stop as I didn’t want to let anyone down so I carried on working on my day job as well as Sophie Says. But hearing you say “Esther, be kind to yourself” coupled with on new years eve Adam looking at me and saying “I don’t know how you did it, but you did it, you got through this year” and me just breaking down and letting all the emotion out made me realise if I am going to succeed in keeping your legacy alive then I need to be kind to myself and look after myself better.
So, because of you Rebecca I have started running. From someone who couldn’t even run for 1 minute a few weeks ago, thanks to Couch to 5k app and the amazing coach that is Michael Jordan (his voice narrates it, I don’t actually have Michael Jordan as a coach. How amazing would that be?! A girl can dream!) I can now run for 20 minutes. But more than the miracle of me actually being able to run it’s the feeling that I get when I do run. I feel like you are there with me. I can just imagine you running and how much better it made you feel. It’s another time in my week where I can be with you and I’m loving it. So yet again, even though you are gone you are still saving me.
Love you so much. Miss you so much.
I hope you’re dancing up there with all the rainbows!
Love, Esther x
This is beautiful….your journey with your sister is very special
I just want to say thank you, ive just sat and read your blogs and although I didnt lose my Mum to mental health, its so helpful to read what you’ve written so beautifully about grief. I bought your books a few months ago for my sons and I didnt know your background, but I do now ❤ xxx
Esther, this is your first I’m redding. Tears in my eyes. So recognizable about leaving Unilever. Want to give you a BIG hug!! Be kind to yourself! Love, Astrid
Astrid Pieterse on