I was left in a car at the age of one, and spent my first five years in the foster care system before I was adopted by my parents. The issues that came with my abandonment played out every day in my career and my life—sometimes in a good way and sometimes not so good.
I was 12 years old when I knew all I wanted to be was a hairdresser.
Against the advice of my guidance counselors, some friends and some family members, I left my conventional high school and went to North Shore Regional Vocational Technical High School. “The Voke” had a reputation as a last-resort high school for misfits. This was the place you ended up just before you got kicked out of school or you were about to give up and quit.
I failed cosmetology school (and many other classes) only for my teachers to pass me with a D in my senior year. This came after my cosmetology teacher called my father to tell him to put me back into a conventional high school and she said to him “Your daughter is NEVER going to be a hairdresser.”. He begged her to let me finish my last year with a promise that I would mature and do better in my senior year. Unfortunately for my teacher, he was wrong. I truly believe they gave me a passing grade just to get me, the pain in their butts, and my not-so-funny sense of humor out of school and on my merry way, anywhere but there.
You see, I was set up for failure from day one. I was not supposed to succeed—all the cards were stacked against me. But guess what? Despite the odds, I did succeed.
I‘ve been a hairstylist for over 35 years, and a salon owner for almost 30. I have a passion for helping future professionals who may have a similar story get past their personal obstacles, gain confidence, and succeed behind the chair.
I truly believe to my core that every person on this planet can be successful.
All you need is your own will and determination, some guidance, some tools, and someone who wholeheartedly believes in you.
I don‘t remember exactly when this picture was taken with Vidal Sassoon, but what I do remember is the feeling of pure inspiration I had at that moment when I met him.
Loving Yourself First
Most of the time our roadblocks to success are ourselves. Sometimes you need help getting out of your own way and gain confidence. We all need someone to help us move past the things that are holding us back from having an amazing, fulfilling life.
This is a photo of me and my amazing friend and my mentor Mr. Daniel Mason-Jones. At the time I was attending one of his classes in New York, The Ultimate Shift, which changed my life. He guided me to realize I needed to get out of MY own way and share my story with everyone. He helped me find my voice and my ‘why’, I am forever grateful for his gentle nudge.
I have deep gratitude for the people in my life who helped me throughout my career and shaped me into the woman I am today. It’s time for me to give back to the beauty industry—an industry that has given me so much opportunity, so many amazing friends, connections, and success.
I believe in you; I KNOW you can be successful. I want to Inspire and guide you—to share the tools that were given to me—and help you succeed.
About My Tattoo
The tattoo on my neck, behind me, yet close to my thoughts, is an African symbol which means “learn from the past”. Our past is what makes us who we are. We can’t nor should we deny it. The past needs to be recognized and healed but never forgotten.
I put this tattoo behind me for a reason, I want my past behind me. I put the message of “learn from the past” in a place where I could look over my shoulder and get a glimpse of it only every once in a while. When I get that glimpse of my tattoo it’s a reminder of what it took to make me who I am today and how far I’ve come.
I did not want this somewhere where I could see it all the time. If I could see my tattoo all the time that would mean my past was in front of me, blocking me from being able to move forward and further away from it.
We all have things that get in the way of our true path in life, these things make us who we are today. It’s the choices you make around the not-so-great things that truly makes the difference.
Learn from your past, and embrace it, because it plays a major role in why you are the wonderful person you are today. But be sure to put it behind you so you can move further into your amazing future.