It's been a while since I've posted... mostly because I've been crazy busy but also because I've not had the energy to blog.
There's been much too write about and unfortunately, it's all piled up. Since the last post, my mobilization dates were pushed back to later in the year, I've traveled out of town on multiple occasions and I'm currently prepping for a long awaited vacation that I was going to cancel but was strongly encouraged to go on by people I might otherwise drag with me into the abyss of insanity (caused by working too much, I'm told.) ALL of these incidents and more - I have much to blog about.
Thank goddess I paid for the airline ticket months ago and made arrangements with a friend when I actually had an income. The uncertainty of deployment and the resulting employment situation has completely wreaked havoc on my financial situation.
Yes, the Army Reserve, Congress and many other supporting programs are very accommodating when it comes to protecting your position or job when you're employed full time but there's little to be done for business owners, entrepreneurs and independent contractors.
With the idea that I would be gone most of this year, I cancelled my contracts, didn't re-enroll in school this semester (no GI Bill) and well, AWV has never paid me a salary so there's nothing new there...
This is beginning to sound like whining so I will stop there. I'm by no means, unaware of my choices. I wake up every morning with purpose and direction. I do what I love and although things are a bit hectic and uncertain just now, I know that it will all work out. An observant reader might also notice the ads as well as the new "Harley Fund" donation link in the upper right. I'm a ways away from being able to buy a Harley but it reads a lot better than "Starving & Near Homeless Veteran Non Profit Founder Fund." :)
It's amazing, even to me, that I can have such faith still. I won't lie and say that I don't vacillate between thinking I'm an absolute idiot and should go back to my full-time job and the other option of cashing out what's left of my savings to stick it out and stay the course. What are NOT options; 1) Letting the cause go, 2) Giving in to less than altruistic funders/donors who are more interested in making themselves/their companies look good than they are in actual substantive and impact-ful change, 3) Entertaining anymore assholes pretending to be interested in the cause when in fact they just want to dangle... carrots in the hopes that I'll actually fall for meeting them at their hotel in the middle of the night to "pick up a check." (Oooh, the stories I may share one day...)
As a veteran, I've grown ever weary and leery of the tens of thousands of non-profit organizations that are "serving veterans." As a non-profit founder, I'm equally tired of the entities with their personal agendas who make money off of the cause. As a woman, it's all I can do to maintain my professionalism. Staying the course is not my biggest fear or concern - ensuring that I don't become bitter has been more of a challenge than I would have ever thought.
"What keeps you going like this?" an old friend asked me the other day.
"The women veterans I get an opportunity to meet through my speaking engagements..." I replied.
Every single event I do, there are a few veterans that I get the honor to interact with directly. They are my soul's sustenance. They're the reason I can live without knowing where next month's rent is going to come from. They are the reason I can't go back to any full time work that would keep me from meeting and helping others just like them... and yes, just like me. We are why I will not quit, give up or sell out.
And of course... I's gots plans. BIG plans. I just need to bring some stability to my personal life so that I can get on with the business of growing AWV responsibly and sustainably...
It's late. That's it for now... just a quick, unedited note. I'll most likely be offline for a while longer but I look forward to sharing some amazing stories and photos in the weeks ahead.