Where Was I?

Written by contributing author, Joanna Ouellette

I thought I would always find the doors easy to open, well, because I always had. I thought that talent, hard work, dedication and a sense of humor would be my keys, as they always had. Never mind. I think I’m experiencing a perfect storm of age (approaching 40), gender and motherhood, the deathbed economy, thirty years of declining living standards and inclining prices, and the short term, profit focused myopia of Business.  This wasn’t an overnight revelation but a slow dawning realization that the success or failure of my family was determined by things outside of our control, and we were losing ground every day. So the need had never been greater to solidify the ground beneath us, although the question of  “how” was not answered easily. As time went on I had to stop seeking the answers in the traditional places and realized a new approach was needed; I needed to get out of my comfort zone, try to regain control of my life again, and find a new way of doing it.

It wasn’t until I met Vera that I realized that my situation, however impossible it seemed at times, was not going to get any easier by riding the storm and hoping for it to get better. Vera, an exceptionally gifted, extremely accomplished and successful individual, was experiencing similar pain to that I had been experiencing, and that truly opened my eyes to the insanity of the situation. If Vera was finding it difficult to find her own sustainable lifestyle, my chances are far less and there are millions more people behind me.  We all tried to do the right thing.

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