When It Rains It Pours! But We Can Change That!

We’ve all heard this saying before and for many mums, it resonates a lot with everything that motherhood entails.

As much as I would love to give you a story that narrates a fairy tale beginning to end on how my business was born, I must disappoint you.

However, the fairy tale is there, just at the very end and is slightly unconventional. I hope my story will give you the confirmation and permission to navigate your dream into reality no matter how hard it may seem.

At 18 weeks pregnant I was made redundant, including the manager and team I worked for. It was unexpected and sudden.

“You've been an amazing asset to the team and we are so sorry”. I heard them say!

My initial thoughts were, that’s ok. I’m just going to find another job in my field of work. How hard can it be? I have the skills. I have the experience and I’m darn good at what I do.

Little did I know at the time that a glass ceiling exists and it also repels pregnant women in the workforce.

Interview after interview, with the up and down belly stare and one awkward smile after another, my chances of getting a secure job were slimming down fast.

What was I to do? 

I was about to have a baby. 

We had a mortgage to pay. 

No one to support us financially.

Pressure on my husband. 

Would we make it? 

Could we keep the home that we had worked so hard for?

What was meant to be a secure future with a maternity leave planned,  was now lingering anxiety about the unknown?

It was everything I DIDN’T want.

William Penn once said: “No pain, no palm; no thorns, no throne; no gall, no glory; no cross, no crown.”

I often reflect on this quote now. Back then I couldn’t really understand what he meant.

It takes strength, resilience, passion, love, and sacrifice to build your empire. Yes, I call my small business my empire, because I built it from the ground up.

These same attributes, skills or maybe perhaps even instincts are what are intertwined in motherhood.

Becoming a mother is one of the biggest changes a woman can experience and within change often comes growth and new opportunities.

I started thinking about how I could make my dream of working for myself come true. Now was the opportunity to invest in ME and embark on MY journey.

I combined my degree and experience in mentorship in youth and training to form my first few tutoring gigs. And that is how The Study Hub Tuition came to be.

I started my service by becoming a mobile tutor. Saving parents time in commuting and traveling by going to them.

It was a humble beginning that has led me to where I am now. Running a business with 15 plus tutors serving time-poor parents and struggling students who need support to grow in their confidence and excel at school.

Was I judged for embarking on this journey because I had a baby arriving soon? Yes!

Was I criticized for taking up an educational role even though I am not a classroom teacher? Yes

Was I left on my own with no support and encouragement? Yes

Society perceives motherhood to be objective, yet the discourse around motherhood is so narrow and based on tippy-toed opinions. A sarcastic juxtaposition. 

Did it stop me from pursuing my aspirations and vision? Absolutely not! Nothing can and will.

There was one thing I struggled with though and that was living up to this expectation of being a mum and running my business should have no-fault. It should be a seamless process. 

I fell into the whole of thinking of if it looked like I had my shit together no one would want to invest in me or my services. The work behind and in my business needed to look perfect. 

There is such a strong comparison between superheroes and mothers. 

The narrative of being the pillar of strength, the giver of love and simply making things happen when no one else can. It’s a beautiful story, one which I agree with to an extent. But as mothers we are often deprived of showing the rawness, the struggles and challenges we face in motherhood and we are expected to rise above it all and move on.

Not only do we need to portray these superpowers on a daily basis but we are almost required to live up to the unrealistic expectation that it all has to be perfect to be credible.

Because if you are unable to live up to this expectation then you are simply not able to be successful.

There is no room to show our struggles. There is no room to be imperfect. There is no room to show that today is simply a hard day and that being a mum is difficult at times.

This has to change!!

I’m passionate about imperfection, I thrive in realness and applaud women who step out of their comfort zone putting their hand up and honestly say  “yes me too, I struggle too” or “you are not alone”.

I want to change the narrative that as mothers in business if we struggle it’s a sign of weakness or failing when in reality it’s a sign of strength to be vulnerable, grow even when uncomfortable, accept change within continuity and step out of one's comfort zone.

There is no shame in being real as a mother. There is beauty in a messy bun and stained T-shirt while you are still able to respond to your clients and provide them with the exact thing they need and want.

There is beauty in seeing you prioritise YOU. Your kids and your life.

Being your authentic self is liberating.

I no longer look for perfection in portraying myself as a mother in business.

What for? Why should I care what others think? I need to be happy, my kids, and my partner is my priority!

So if you are building your empire and feel the pressure to show up without any imperfection or remove the beauty of your struggles, then it's time to release yourself from these expectations.

Surround yourself with like-minded people who hold your values, who cheer you on, you are willing to invest in you as you are.

Be ready to step outside your comfort zone.

Focus on your path with your eyes on YOUR price.

Don’t compare. Stay focused!

It’s time to ditch the narrative created by others and start your own story.

Because it’s perfect mama. You’re perfect! 

So remember when it rains, it pours… it pours with possibilities.

I hope my journey will inspire and encourage you!

Fibi - Owner and Director of The Study Hub Tuition and The Tutor Mentor

Instagram: @thestudyhub_tuition & @thetutormentor