By Takiya Smith
At the beginning of the year, I sat down to re-evaluate my life. I wanted to prioritize what was necessary and categorize what could wait. I took the entire first week of the year off to rest, plan out my next steps in business, refocus my prayer life and spend some time with my kids. During this time, what was planned to only be a week turned into about two months as I allowed God to order my steps and show me exactly what was a priority.
During the first week, because of time off, I was free to pick up both of my kids from their schools so they didn’t have to ride the bus home or be shuffled off to after-care while I worked late nights. With no time constraints to get back to work, it was a leisure to hang out at the waterfront for ice cream or head over to Pigeon Point Park to run around, play and be silly.
Even after getting home, the ease of sitting down to go over my son’s homework was stress-free without the interruption of my cell phone beeping, chiming and ringing with the sounds of appointment requests or inquiries. At the top of my “priority list” was to hire a personal assistant, and as soon as that was done, phones and schedules were now non-existent in my world.
As my week off neared to a swift end, it was during this time that I truly began to realize just how much I desired and longed to be “at home.” I enjoyed getting up to cook and sit down to a hot breakfast with my kids. I looked forward to our morning chats on the drive to school. I loved coming home to a quiet house to sit in silence as I let the peace of God flood my house and heart in prayer and bible study. It felt great to start dinner and have it prepped and ready at a decent hour rather than our “every man for himself” free-for-all of the cabinets and fridge that happened more often than not on regular busy nights. More importantly, it melted my heart to see my 10 year old’s face light up everyday that I was free to pick him up from school. To top it off, my 16 year old and I became closer than close with our daily routine of hitting happy hour at Sonic for cherry and cranberry limeades, and peanut M&M’s from the dollar store.
A discovery had been made, direction had been given and a change was on the horizon. This entrepreneur was about to embark on a new path to success and it was simply, yet fulfillingly, called motherhood. Somewhere, in the midst of beauty and business, I had not forgotten it nor neglected it but had unintentionally miscategorized it. Next to God, it was my Number 1 priority and He was beautifully reminding me of that. No home or house is perfect but each family possesses a unique aspect of individuality that should be inspected, examined, explored and accessed.
As I began to listen to my heart guiding my desires, I heard the call and need of my children wanting their mother. My son was struggling in math and my daughter was coping with having to “grow up” too soon while attempting to take on responsibilities that were mine that she somehow felt were hers — tasks such as assisting her younger brother with homework, cooking dinner and even offering to help me pay bills with her own hard earned money. None the less, while I raise strong, independent and responsible children, this is not exactly what I had in mind nor intended to happen for them.
So, here’s the deal: Three months in and this “mompreneur” has prioritized a life of family first, business second and all else one day at a time. Many of you may have noticed my decreased hours at work, a shift in structure of the business and a column here and there. However, my dear friends, I am going nowhere. Balance was of the utmost importance and I have found that I can do it all with relevant respect to each of my assigned tasks and talents. I am still taking and picking up my kiddos daily at school, my son has brought his grades up two levels, every Monday is still happy hour at Sonic with my daughter, and after homework every evening is still a family dinner time together. In the midst of it all, the businesses are still prospering, the release of my second book is on the way, and coming in April I have a splendid, new and exciting surprise just for you all.
I told you, beauty is my business — but I’m a mom first!
Takiya La’Shaune Smith, mother, licensed cosmetologist, mentor and owner of Beautique Lash & Brow, is an author and beauty columnist promoting inner and outer beauty, self-esteem, preservation and awareness. Email her at Takiya@Takiya-LaShaune.com or contact her at 843-263-0426.