Starting Over by Starting a Business
I am no longer a social worker, but from the time I was in high school, I knew I wanted to be one. I got my Master’s Degree in Social Work and worked as a front line social worker for about 17 years.
The last 3 1/2 of those years were working with families bringing their children, usually babies, to the Hospital for Sick Children for heart surgery. It was the most intense and most personal work I had ever done, and I struggled with the stress and emotions of it all.
When my son was diagnosed with epilepsy about a year and a half ago, it all became too much and I sunk into a depression I couldn’t climb back out of. The only way out was to leave my job and my career behind and start over.
I left my job last April and I took some time to recover, and gradually worked my way out of depression and back to myself. But once I was ready to get back to work, I had literally no idea of what I would do next. All I had ever wanted to do was be a social worker, and nothing else had ever called to me.
The idea that, seemingly out of nowhere, planted a seed in me was sharing my passion for reading with children. But how to turn that into a job?
While I was trying to figure that out, I started the Butterfly Books blog. I remembered when my son was diagnosed and I needed to help him understand what was happening, and I went to my usual go to in hard times: books. But there were so many and I had no idea which ones would be good. I was lucky and could go to the office next to mine and ask the epilepsy social worker to recommend some, and that was so helpful. I realized I could help other families in that way, and use my social work experience in a different way than before.
So I started to blog about therapeutic books, as well as regular books. And as I blogged, I planned another way to share my passion for children’s books, and just a couple of months ago I launched the Butterfly Books children’s book subscription service.
If anyone had told me a year and a half ago that I would have planned, created, and launched Butterfly Books, I would not have believed them. Me, an entrepreneur? It still doesn’t quite feel real! But it feels right, for me and for my family.