Some days I am lost, like the little girl I used to be. Scared for night, scared to be alone, scared of what will come and unsure what the point of living is. Such deep thoughts for such a little girl who should be dreaming big and learning important skills. Some mornings were just as scary as the nights, unsure how beaten a mother would be. Would I see her sitting covered in blood still drunk from the night before? Would I hear the chaos from her falling down the spiral staircase having knocked out all her teeth and the sarcasm of how typical that was for her. Ashamed. Abandoned. Hurt. These are just a few of my memories; it makes sense I have only a few.
As I grew up I battled myself and my worth, but that moment in 2016 when I chose to live fully I chose to stand up for myself, and this past year I have forgotten that. It’s crazy how quickly you can go back to forgetting your worth. I will elaborate on this in another post, but I started losing my faith in myself.
I worked my butt off to get where I am. I took the first step onto that stage and shared my story publicly. I invested in myself, I spoke on stages when I was scared to do so, I was published even though I was scared to death of certain people seeing my story. I chose life over fear. I put the work in; the endless hours of blogging, posting, sharing and giving myself. Nothing worthwhile comes easy!
I have branded who I am since choosing this life. It all started with being a survivor and sharing my truth. It grew into finding my tribe, and then being Badass and ditching the shame. I have countless videos, lives, pictures and posts of this journey and over 1000 of my followers have watched me grow. Being authentic and vulnerable has been who I am and who I expect those around me to be.
However, we all have faults. I trust to much, to easy and to fast. I believe there is good in everyone, and I trust people won’t do me dirty; even though I have been taken advantage of my entire life. Being this truthful makes me a Badass. Not some tough Badass but a 100% authentic human being. One that can go to bed each night knowing they are a good person.
When I began my first clothing line with motivational quotes that my late Grandma would tell me I didn’t believe in myself but I believed in her belief of me. That’s all I needed at the time. As my confidence grew I started Badass Clothing Co. I scrimped and saved to pay for licensing, registrations, business start up fees, trademark and artist costs all while being a single Mom unsure if this would go how I intended for it to go. I put my life into this. It was my idea, my vision, my dream. As my other company is called Catching Dreams I began to catch my own and started doing not talking.
My dreams were coming true. It didn’t take long to start seeing my brand across Canada as far as Ontario and because of my connection with people. My desire to make a change in the world. I saw them and they saw me. See that’s the thing about who I am and what I do. I didn’t start this just for an income; I started this to start a community of likeminded people. To show other survivors that together we are strong. I made my own mission statement back in 2015 and it is “My mission is to inspire, empower and support women and children to heal from the cycle of abuse.” I would like to expand this to men as well.
That is what Badass Clothing Co is about. It is a unique brand with a hint of my culture to share with the world. It took me months before I came out with my logo. I sat in my thoughts as I visioned what this brand would be. I had yet to see any lettering logos with this artwork in the background. This was all me. The native girl with big dreams. So to see someone just swiftly take my ideas and roll with it after I put years into my brand is like being abused all over again. The feelings I’ve felt recently hurt.
Badass is a community for us survivors of any trauma to feel united as one.
So as I write this I am fighting the urge to “take it dry” as when I am attacked I go into victim mode easily and either freeze, fight or flight. Sadly this is something many of us do. Here’s the thing though, I have grown so much I no longer fight because the only way I know how to fight is with my fists, and I’m working soooo hard to not freeze or flight. Instead I want to grow! I want to educate. Now it’s about learning to fight with my words. To fight for myself. To fight for me beliefs and to fight for all of you that have had my back this entire journey.
I’ve made mistakes! A whole lot of them, but my mistakes do not define me. What I do about them is what defines me. I entrusted someone in selling my brand and that person went ahead to say I’m “stupid” and “she really shouldn’t be in business” and the best one was that I was offered 10% of her business and because I turned it down I was stupid. Here’s the kicker. The business is Badass Clothing Co but with different art. I turned it down, because Badass is mine. It is solely my company and brand and something I’ve been called since I began my speaking career. I started this career as a survivor sharing a story that grew into being Badass; because being a survivor is Badass! Choosing to give up my victim status was key to all of this. I choose me and I will fight for myself until the day I am dead, because I am the person I needed when I was abused.
I will no longer be used, abused, talked down upon or thrown away like trash. No thank you. I do not need to relive my childhood as an adult.
Here is a video I put together with just a little bit of my journey. Click the link to check it out.
I have been in he works of several ideas to drop as part of Badass Clothing Co all to do with being a survivor and Badass. My girlfriend who owns a local printshop has been with me the whole way. We were ready to drop these new ideas in the Fall, but like a wise friend once said to me “if not now; when”
I commend anyone that wants to ‘stand up, rise up and show up” badassbon circa 2018. However be authentic in doing so. Have integrity. Morals. Do not put others down for your own gain.