Here's to The New Beginnings
“Coincidence” is one of my favourite words. Unfortunately, it’s meaning is very often confused with something random, accidental – and that’s definitely not what it is. Coincidence is when two or more events co-incide, so occur at the same time. That’s synchronicity at work right there, if you ask me!
And today I have a perfect example of a coincidence I’d like to tell you about.
It’s 4th of March today, and this date marks one of the most important and at the same time one of the scariest moments I have experienced in my life. On this day, exactly 6 years ago, I found out I was pregnant with Rita. Back then it was a Friday as well, and ironically, it was two days before Mother’s Day in the UK 😉 Now, allow me to explain why it was so scary, as that’s the fun part of this whole story!
I was 19 years old, so I was basically a child myself. Only two or three weeks before receiving the ‘happy’ news I have moved out of my cousin’s place – after living with her for the first three months following my heroic (crazy!) move from Poland to the UK. I moved out of there because I felt it was time for me to stand on my own two feet. There were some other things going on in the background and also, I wanted to shorten my work commute – we lived 17 miles from Swindon, where I worked as a waitress at Pizza Express (it was my first job in the UK). As you can probably imagine, I was spending a large part of my earnings for petrol as well. So the way I saw it, it just made more sense, especially that my new workplace (and a new home as well) was 2 miles away from where she lived – I figured that if she ever needed help with her two daughters, I’ll be only a few minute drive away. It was a win-win situation, right?! Well, I couldn’t be more wrong. You have no idea what rage is unless you ever witnessed an angry Polish woman. To say that she started a shitstorm would be a gross understatement! But it wouldn’t be fair to her if I didn’t come clean. As you already know, I was just a kid, and my communication skills left a lot to desire back then. Since our work schedules were completely different, I didn’t see her for a few good weeks during that time. We never had a chance to sit down and talk things through – a vision of that scared a living shit out of me anyway. I think on some subconscious level I knew that if we did, she’d talk me out of this idea (it wouldn’t be a first time). So I didn’t see any other way how to handle it, but to pack up and move, and then tell her later. I tidied up the house, my bedroom – everything. I emailed my resignation to the restaurant (not knowing she was doing a manager’s shift). I know what you’re thinking now, and yep, you’re right. She was the one to open it.
I was at the Blue Boar Pub (my second workplace and second home in the UK) when she called me and started yelling straight into my ear. About how ungrateful I was, and how I complicated her life (with helping her with the kids etc). She screamed her lungs out at me for a few good minutes, threatening me that she’s going to destroy me, the standard shit you hear in situations like that. Don’t worry, I saved the best for the grand finale – that day, her last words to me were: ‘and you must move out TODAY!’ – to which I calmly replied: ‘Well, I just did’. Admit it, Brazilian telenovelas can suck it! Hard.
Just so you know, I was most grateful for everything she’d done, and I am to this day. She was the one to drag me out of my depressing situation back in Poland, she helped me with settling in this whole new situation, in this completely different country I found myself in. She helped me with getting my first job, a bank account, and even my first car (it was THE worst car ever, but that’s what makes the whole story even better – I’ll come back to that at some point). If it wasn’t for her, I wouldn’t be where I am now, and who I am. And most importantly, there would be no wood job! So give it up for my cousin, folks, as in the end, she’d done an amazing job!
Anyway, she hung up after I informed her about my new living situation, blocked me everywhere and we didn’t keep in touch for a long while. I was on my own from that point onwards – and I was FREE.
So, fast-forward two or three weeks (the freedom didn’t last long, eh? 😉), there I was, standing in the upstairs bathroom, with my pants down and holding a white stick with two stripes on it, and crying like a maniac. I was an utter mess, and scared shitless – because why wouldn’t I be?!
I locked myself in my bedroom and rang Maciej. At that time he was still living in Poland, trying to save his company from his then-associates, who, to word it gently, were basically slaughtering the business, running it to the ground. To make the whole situation even funnier, when I rang him, he was on his way to Poznan, after spending one night in Warsaw – at my parent’s house.
I spent the first few minutes trying to explain to him the situation and why I’m crying, while at the same time I was trying to calm the hell down. I don’t remember what came first – his realization of what the situation was, or me calming down. However, I do remember that when it hit him, he pulled over, lit a cigarette, and went completely quiet for a few minutes – which to me seemed like an eternity! And then I only heard him whisper: ‘fuuuuu…. Nope, I’m happy’. :D
I finally stopped crying, we talked a bit more and agreed that we’ll think everything through over the weekend (to cool off, I guess) and then after that we’d come up with a plan on what to do. And that’s exactly what we did.
I mentioned it was one of the most important days of my life – but not just my life, Maciej’s as well. On that day my life made a 180 degrees shift. *poof*! And just like that, I was no longer a kid – not in the form known to me up until that point. I was going to be someone’s mother, and I couldn’t believe it – and to be completely honest, I still can’t, sometimes :D
It was an important one for Maciej too – he had one more thing to think about on top of all the problems going on at that time. And all of a sudden, it became the number one thing to think about!
To me, that day is a freaking historical milestone – it marks The Beginning of the most important Project which we both agreed to take on. And as with most situations that seem difficult/scary etc, it was the best thing that could have happened, and in the best possible time. If it wasn’t for Rita showing up for us like that, I’m not sure we would be still together. We were talking about having children, but in a year or two. But then again, who knows how this story would unfold if she didn’t decide to step down right there and then to kick our butts and make us sort out this whole sad mess around us! I think she was the bridge between our two lives.
Now that you get the idea of what happened and how come we are where we are today, I can finally have a go at getting to the point from the beginning of this crazy story and explain the ‘mysterious’ coincidence here.
First of all, I love talking to people, always have. Those of you who had a chance to connect with me 1:1 – well, you know that very well (and some of you all too well 😉). I always loved hearing other people’s stories as well as telling my own. But most importantly, I always wanted to help others, in any way that would be most beneficial. I’ve been wanting to start writing for a few years now. Writing has been the main theme of my life ever since I learned how to use a pen and paper. Also, as a kid, I used to write letters to my parents. When I was growing up, I was exchanging letters with friends, and that’s also when I started keeping a journal (I still have all of my old journals somewhere, but I don’t think I’ll ever find the courage to read them, ha!). Finally, when I met Maciej, I was writing letters to him (without getting a single reply, but I didn’t expect any), and then at some point, after being encouraged by Maciej (and other people as well) I decided that this is what I’m going to do one day. Why? Because I always felt I had something to contribute to the world, and since writing always has been my preferred method of communication, well, here we are. Also, writing is the only thing I’ve been doing consistently throughout my life. It’s a massive part of me.
Speaking from my own experience, sometimes reading or hearing someone else’s story is all you need to help with finding solutions to all sorts of problems a person may have. And there are no exceptions, after all, we all do have problems, even the tiniest ones.
As you probably noticed by now, this business isn’t just one of many businesses out there, it isn’t just about flooring - it’s way more than that. I think the most accurate word that comes to my mind in this moment is a ‘community’. Proud to say, we’re one of the links in a growing community of wonderful, like-minded people with similar values and similar level of social and ecological awareness. When someone turns to us, we don’t just sell the flooring to them, because that’s something anyone could do, really. We’re here to serve, first and foremost. Serve our clients and at the same time our beautiful planet by focusing on repurposing – for us it’s mainly reclaimed parquet, and now these letters/’tales’ or whatever you wish to call it. And even if it’s just for one person that will find my writings valuable – it’s totally worth it. I know all of this may seem weird. But the reason for that is very simple. We are weird – proudly!
The point I’m trying to make, is this – whether you need a floor or just to talk/be heard, we’re here for you. Mainly me, because a) Maciej spends most of the time either running around the warehouse or preventing Rita from doing the things children do that are either dangerous or annoying, or like in most cases - both b) he’s the exact opposite of me – he doesn’t speak much, and he doesn’t know English that well (yet).
Again, well done for getting this far – I’m almost done!
The coincidence here is, that this ‘letter’, and this whole new section on our website, is another major event in my life – it takes the second place right after finding out about Rita 6 years ago. Yes, it is this big to me. Because this, is basically my second child. The second massive Project in my life, but unlike with a child, this one is 100% mine – after all, it takes two to create a human being, unless I’m not up to date 😉 and what makes it a beautiful coincidence, is that it’s happening on the same date as the other event. I don’t expect you to get it. I get it, and that’s all that matters. But I’m so touched by the Universe’s mysterious ways, I just had to publish it here. The best thing in this situation here is my realization, that I’ve been reading the signs that the Universe sent to me with 100% accuracy.
First there were the signs appearing more and more frequently in the past… yeah, 3 weeks. And then, this Tuesday… came the final ‘push’ – and that’s the exact word used in a conversation I had yesterday! No need to explain, right?
This wonderful soul’s, and her partner’s actions lead me right up to this point. They gave me the impulse for the taking action – and I just did it.
So, now it’s official. I’ve reached the point of no return 😉 I hope you enjoyed reading the very first story published here (it’s a first one ever published!) as much as I enjoyed writing it and sharing it here, with you. I still can’t believe this is actually happening! This again!
I’m sure over time my writing will improve – and I hope you’ll stick around to witness it. It is a massive challenge for me, as like I already mentioned, English is my second language.. it wasn’t easy, but hell, it definitely is rewarding.
To finish this properly, I’d like to dedicate this piece to the three people who came into my life and made an enormous impact – to my daughter, Rita, for making the first Beginning and to Alice and Peter for making it possible for the second Beginning appear.
PS. I forgot to mention, Maciej had kept every single one of my letters! 7 years worth. I guess they weren’t so bad, after all 😉
Thank you, to every single person who took the time to read this.