This time last year, I was finalizing details for my business Launch Party. My stomach was a bundle of nerves, and I couldn't believe that I was really going to move forward with this... and that was just the beginning.
When I was planning that party, my goal was to get my name out there as a planner in the area, but with the intention of offering my services part-time.
Here I am, a year later.
A year ago, I never would have guessed that only a month after that launch I'd put in my two-weeks at my full-time job. A year ago, I never would have known how much this business would fulfill me, would encourage me and empower me. A year ago, I never would have thought that I'd be working with interns and assistants to get through a busy wedding season. A year ago, I had no idea that my life would change for all of the very best reasons.
To the clients that I have had the opportunity to work with thus far ... Thank you for trusting me with one of the most important days of your life. Even though my role in your day entailed lots of organizing and making things 'just right', I know it is so much more than that. You have no idea how much I cherish the memories that I get to be a part of and the friendships that are formed during the planning process. Thank you for letting me into your homes and for sharing the personal stories behind some of your decisions. I cried when you walked down the aisle, when you danced with your fathers, mothers and brothers and when you danced together throughout the evening surrounded by those who love you most. Thank you for letting me fluff your gowns (you all have excellent taste) right before you walked towards your future and for allowing me to play a role in bringing your dreams to life. Thank you for letting me be a part of a day that you'll look back on forever.
To my family ... Thank you for believing in me. Thank you for not telling me that I was a lunatic for walking away from a steady paycheck. Thank you for driving around with me when I felt uneasy about long drives or late nights. Thank you for always pushing me to work smarter, harder and to enjoy every bit of what I'm doing. Thank you for your encouragement, for your positive outlook and honest feedback. Thank you for moving me in and out of offices as I figured out what worked best. Thank you for sitting with me late at night to brainstorm, for packing up your vehicles with supplies and for acting as a part of the Alexandria Catherine Events team even when you have your own jobs to do. Most importantly, thank you for raising me to be confident enough to take the steps that I have, and for teaching me to never let fear stand in the way of my dreams. Thank you for everything. I appreciate and love you guys more than you could ever imagine.
To Daniel... Thank you for not batting an eyelash when I told you my plans, even when we both knew that it would change ours. Thank you for supporting me every step of the way and for reminding me how proud you are of my decisions. Thank you for your patience when I check my emails when we're watching The Walking Dead and when I'm late to dinner because of meetings and site-visits. Thank you for making me laugh when things get tough. Thank you for running 'exciting' errands with me... like buying office supplies and for your input on technology that I simply do not understand (cough, cough... printers). Thank you for staying up late until I'm home from my events safe and for checking in on event days even when you know I might not see the texts for a few hours. Oh, and for putting on a suit at a moments notice. I love you!!
To my friends... Thank you for sacrificing entire days when I needed an extra pair of hands at an event. Thank you for sharing my pictures and social media posts and for referring me to people you know. Thank you for forcing me to be a regular twenty-something from time to time... for the girls nights on the couch watching movies + sipping wine, for the dinner dates and the nights on the town. Thank you for listening to me when I need to vent about the reality of how hard it is to own a business, and for being happy for me when I share how wonderful it is at the same time. You've shown me the true definition of friendship this year, and I can't thank you enough.
A year ago this week, I had no idea that I'd be where I am now. I cannot thank you all enough for helping me to get here. Cheers to one year, and I can't wait to see where Alexandria Catherine Events grows to in Year #2.