Opinion: Why I had to sell my wedding ring to keep my business alive
I’m sure these women entrepreneurs share my feeling that their businesses are more than business. The Bare Bar allows me to provide good jobs to women in my community and to set an example for my five children. When my son tells his friends that his mom owns her own business or that my daughter wants to follow me to work, it’s worth fighting for.
I fought hard and made sacrifices every day for the past year. In December, my husband and I made the heartbreaking decision to sell my wedding ring so I could afford two months of living room rent – an expense that a PPP loan would have helped cover. Incentives and loans have helped, but they don’t go far. As part of our rental agreement, we had to put our house as collateral. Every penny we earn and every incentive we receive, including the child tax credit, needs to be reinvested in the business rather than towards living expenses like child care. Otherwise, we could lose our home.
The kindness of strangers also made the Bare Bar work. After a woman in Seattle heard my story, she sent me her personal emergency fund with a card that said, “Be Courageous.” Times like this were the highlights of a dark year. I try to find small ways to give back, like providing facials to frontline workers at local hospitals who have kept people’s spirits up.
Lawmakers have the power to make my dream come true. They have to use it.