Since I was a little girl, I have always preferred the company of boys. As far as I can remember, in the school yard while the other girls were playing skipping rope, I was playing kick ball with the boys. Even in university, I chose a discipline where the ratio girl/boy was something around 1 to 15! I suppose you get my point: I’ve never been a ‘girly girl’, and was somewhat proud of it.
Until I had my kids...
Unfortunately for the tomboy in me, parental leave are taken mostly by women. Wherever I went with my children (play group, pool, library), there were moms. A real nightmare! Don’t get me wrong here. I was not sexist or something like that, I just found men more interesting.
As you all know, I started my cloth diaper business while being a SAHM with my 1 year old. One day I decided to promote my products while attending the play group. Why not? I would be stupid not to do so right? THE perfect target audience. Anyways. That is where I met Vanessa Dewson from Vanessa Dewson photography + design and her wonderful little boy. She told me about a group of entrepreneur moms that met and had events once in a while in Ottawa and invited me to one of their meetings. First of all, I thought that Vanessa was really nice to:
1- talk to me ;-)
2- inform me about this group
3- invite me.
But Vanessa’s kindness was only the tip of the iceberg. I went to the Entrepreneurial Moms Ottawa’s (EMO) meeting and met wonderful women, mothers, and entrepreneurs that gather together to help each other whenever they can. They promote each other, share experience and expertise, organize workshops to help on different aspects of being an entrepreneur and organize trade shows.
Since September (when I joined EMO) I had the great pleasure of working with Vanessa to organize a Baby Model Search, had a product review and giveaway organized by Amanda DeGrace of DeGrace Energetics, attended not one but three “women oriented” trade shows (Women Entrepreneurs in Orleans, Entrepreneurial Moms Ottawa and Shopping and Sweets), partnered with Danielle Boucher from Eco Bebe Boutique who is now offering MiniMaestro diapers on her online store, was introduced to Anna Belanger from Anna Belanger & Associates who agreed to display diaper samples and brochures in her Clinique, and the list goes on and on…
I am literally blown away by the solidarity and the will to help each other that exists between women. I have a strange but strong feeling that men who are starting a new business would not get that much help and would probably struggle more to get to the point I am today.
I hope that one day I will be able to give back (or forward) all that help. And I am now proud to say that I enjoy very much the company of women. My only regret is that it took more than 35 years to figure that out...