I have had the incredible fortune to be a full-time mom for 14 years. So rewarding, heart-warming, and delightful most of the time. At other times, frustrating and mind-numbingly tedious, depending on the day or the moment. Exactly like any other job I’ve ever had (although, honestly, higher highs and lower lows in the mom world... Also, very poor pay scale and vacation package). If you’ve been there, I don’t have to explain.
And then the tweens happened and, all of sudden, my kids just didn’t need me quite as much. They had mastered the complicated tasks of putting on socks and long-sleeved shirts! In addition, they had developed wonderful friendships with children I feel are partially mine, if only in my heart. And, as it should be, I noticed one day that my little wee ones preferred the company of these folks to me. And I sat around (after taxiing them to their respective play dates, of course) wondering what in the world to do with myself. Frankly, I was pretty lost.
I dared to imagine a life back in the work force: dressing up, feeling accomplished, energized and important; adding value and making some money (turns out teenagers are really expensive pets). My former job as a high-tech consultant was not an option: too much travel. I thought about the hotel industry: I love travel! I thought about retail: I love shoes! I thought the most about interior design, which is my passion. I surround myself with books, magazines, and every kind of social media having to do with interior design. I am truly addicted. But, at the end of the day, I couldn’t find a path that allowed me to be the kind of mom I want to be for the next six years of my life when my youngest walks out the door to find her future.
Obviously, I settled on real estate. I wasn’t aware of the terrible reputation real estate agents have. I studied hard and launched myself 120% into learning everything I could about this business. Shortly after I passed my real estate exam, I bought the #1 real estate book on Amazon: The Millionaire Real Estate Agent by Gary Keller. I couldn’t wait to get started – I was so ready to be a fantastic real estate agent! And somewhere in Chapter 1, my heart sank. After months of studying, I realized I had chosen the wrong career. I am not a cold caller. I am not a self-promoter. I am definitely not the kind of person who is comfortable contacting people I know to ask them if they are interested in buying or selling their house. Oh boy.
Regardless of all this, I’ve decided to stay in real estate. I love working with people and I love helping somebody find the perfect something beautiful that fills a need. I worked in retail for years and I had a following of loyal customers who trusted me to help them spend their money wisely on something they would enjoy for years. Finding the right home is no different than finding the right dress: it must fit you like a glove, it must be beautiful, it must be affordable relative to your budget, and it must be the BEST option available. I never sold a more expensive dress to a customer just to make a bit more on my commission. Not only would that feel wrong in my heart, your customers know where you work and they will certainly let you know if you have steered them wrong.
I had drinks last night with a friend who mentioned to me how much she dislikes real estate agents. I was so curious and then saddened to hear about the terrible experience she had with her agent who simply didn’t do her job. My husband and I have been very lucky with the many real estate agents we’ve used through the years. My goal as a real estate agent is to do my job representing my client’s best interests, to be a positive addition to this strong and impressive broker community in the town where I live, and to be able to sleep like a baby every night knowing I have done my absolute best and haven’t taken advantage of anyone or sold anyone “up the river.” If you buy a house on Bainbridge, you become a member of my community and we will bump into each other. More often than you can imagine. My goal is for you to tell me how much you love your home every time I see you.
Wow, are you still with me? Thank you for reading my blog. I cannot tell you how much I appreciate your support and I promise future blogs will mostly be light, short, and full of pretty pictures. I just had to get this one out there.