1982

1982

Childhood

A bookworm from the start, my childhood was filled with Barbie’s, books, and biking around our neighbourhood with my friends and cousins. True bliss. I was a hard worker, and in my grade 7 report card I wrote in my self assessment “I worked really hard this year but I didn’t take much down time. I really look forward to taking some time off this summer”. And the tone was set for my perfectionist, workaholic ways.

1998

1998

The future volcanologist

When I was young, my Dad gave me a book about volcanoes and I LOVED it. I looked forward to every month when his National Geographic came, so I could look through the glossy pages and see if they covered any volcanoes or earthquakes. I was obsessed for no reason, I had never even seen a volcano! I just loved them. So I decided that I would be a volcanologist when I grew up. Period. In Grade 10, I decided what university I would go to and what program I would study. Understatement of the century: I like to plan. P.S. I did walk on a volcano in 2005 and made a rock out of a lava flow on Mt. Kilauea in Hawaii. Best experience ever.

2002

2002

First Co-op Job

In University, I did a co-op degree where I worked every other term to get a taste of the real world. Well I tasted it, and I did NOT like it. There was only one work term where I really loved the job that I was doing (and that was working by myself in a lab all day, pretty much a dream job for a nerdy introvert like me), but the other 5 or so? You couldn't get me out of there fast enough. While at the time I hated  what I was doing, now I look back on those work terms with fondness because they taught me what I didn’t want to do with the rest of my life. I guess you can say from the start that I was a corporate misfit.

2006

2006

Graduated from University of Waterloo

With a super useful Geophysics degree and a full scholarship to do my PhD at MIT, I thought I had my life figured out. Then my body started betraying me: panic attacks and anxiety, severe nausea and upset stomach daily, dizziness and vertigo, and cystic acne. This was the first time my doctor said to me “are you sure it’s not all in your head?”. He almost got bitch slapped that day.

2007

2007

Holistic Nutrition School

After a year of visiting different medical specialists who couldn’t tell me why my body felt like it was falling apart, I visited a Naturopathic Doctor who suggested I might have food allergies. When my test results came back positive to a ton of foods I was eating, I felt like a veil had been lifted. Finally some answers! Learning how to eat virtually all new foods (and learning how to cook them) wasn’t an adventure for the faint of heart, but it completely changed my health. I knew I wanted to help other people who were struggling with the same issues, and considered becoming a Dietician. Nope, not for me. Then my Naturopath recommended a local Holistic Nutrition School. I immediately looked into it, and was enrolled within weeks.

2008

2008

Opened up shop

I knew from the start of nutrition school that I would go into business for myself, despite the fact that I had no entrepreneurial experience. I’m not the kind of person to let that sort of detail hold me back. Before I even graduated, I had registered my business. I made the mistake that almost every other new biz owner makes by thinking “If I build it, they will come”. I rented an office in a health food store (because I thought they’d refer me clients … I’m still waiting), bought an expensive testing machine and a stock of supplements. What I didn’t do was any marketing. Surprise, surprise, with an upcoming wedding and a new house, I had to get a “real job” because I wasn’t making any money in my business.

2009

2009

Soul sucking jobs

From here on out, I worked the worst jobs to make some money while I side hustled in my business. I even worked at the Estee Lauder counter at Sears to make enough money for my share of our wedding. Le sigh. Before I kicked my corporate gigs to the curb, I was working as a Financial Services Representative at a major Canadian bank with every Wednesday off to work on my nutrition biz. I lived for those Wednesdays when I could do something that filled my soul up. I dreamed of the days when I could build an online business from home, and not have to follow anyone else’s orders or schedule.

2012

2012

Our son

Aleks was born in 2012, and what a rollercoaster that was. I was sick every single day of my pregnancy, and when Aleks was born he was rushed into major surgery the same day to remove ⅔ of his small intestine. We spent 4 ½ months living at the Ronald McDonald House an hour and a half way from home while he got well enough to come home with us. He came home with a colostomy bag, which was reversed in his last surgery at 7 months old. Today he’s a thriving 5-year-old boy with enough energy to run circles around all of us. I was determined to not go back to my bank job, so I put all my extra time on maternity leave and a small inheritance into launching an online business. I invested in my first online courses, worked with a business coach, and launched my first mini online course. I was off to the races.