My name is Christiana and I started my own business, C&E Apparel in October of 2019
I started this business for a number of reasons.
I met my husband Ed while teaching abroad in China. Ed and I love traveling and we love our life abroad (we currently live in Taiwan), but we miss our families… SO MUCH. So, we needed to CREATE opportunities for ourselves that would allow us to travel home for more visits. It’s been hard. I’m not going to lie. We didn’t start this business and fly home the next month. This summer, it will have been nearly two years since I have visited. It’s hard to invest money into the business and not set it aside towards a plane ticket. I have to remind myself that it is an investment in our future. If we don’t do this now, we are going to be in the same position a year from now, 5 years from now, 10 years from now… but if I start now… If I make a change NOW. Maybe, 5 years from now we will be able to visit whenever we want; and who knows what that means for us 10 years from now??
- I had a message to share
As a teacher, my heart was broken from the amount of body shame that I would hear/see. One student asked my husband how she could get rid of her calf. The muscle was too big. She couldn’t see how beautiful she was or that that muscle was a sign of strength. She just wanted to look like the girls in the media. I want to spread #bodypositivity. Everyone should know that #everybodyisbeautiful. The community that I have now been able to be a part of because of this message has made a HUGE impact on my life. Beyond hearing negative comments from students, I have never been very confident myself. I have been able to work on that these past few months and really noticed a change in my mental health. I have started purposefully following those with similar messages and unfollowing those who oppose #bodyconfidence. I have also surrounded myself with an AMAZING group of women who build each other up on a daily basis.
- Financial Flexibility
Someone once asked if I wanted financial freedom. I honestly don’t think that will EVER be possible. There are ALWAYS going to be bills to pay. You will never be FREE from your finances. You may not worry as much, but you will still need to plan. So, I said I want more flexibility. I want to be able to do the things I love without the added guilt of “Should I REALLY be doing this”.
My spirit has been reignited since starting C&E Apparel. I technically work the same amount of hours, or even more than I was before but the time is spent doing something I love and care about. I have had to overcome a few hurdles in my entrepreneurial journey and I am SURE there will be more, but I cannot remember the last time I was so excited to see what the future holds.