Accepting Reality

I had a business meeting yesterday morning that did not go as well as I had hoped. I don’t often write about the water company that we own and operate – it’s not really my happy place. But I realized last night as I was trying to laugh off a bad day with Peter, I’ve been managing this company for 6 year. Whoa. It hadn’t really dawn on me that it had been that long. And while Peter was was making my laugh by comparing the time to a prison sentence, I realized that it might be time to embrace accept it. To stop calling it “the stupid water company” as I usually refer to it. To give it the attention it demands. To recognize that I spend a lot of time running a business and that while I may not love it, I’ve gotten pretty good at it. I’ve learned a lot and together with my mom, we’ve turned a regulated business from solidly in the red to being in the black. It’s time to acknowledge our work and start to find the bright spot in the business.

As I dropped the kiddos off at their schools yesterday, Baylor knew something was up because I was wearing heels. When I told her that I had an important meeting, she responded with “I’ll say a prayer for you today”. The second word out of her mouth when I picked her up was “how was your meeting??”. When I told her that it wasn’t great, she told me that not only had she said a prayer for me, she asked her whole class to pray too and then the other class during religion to do the same.

I realized that no matter how unsatisfied I am with this business, there aren’t many things as amazing as being able to send our kiddo to a fantastic school and to have 35 six year olds saying prayers for you. And if I had to choose between an always amazing business or a six year old with a heart of gold, I’ll take that little lady every time.

Life is good.

Veni Vidi Vici

Phew. I’m exhausted.

I don’t write about it often because The Goon Room is my happy, work free space, but once in a while work creeps in. For those that don’t know, my mom and I own and run a small water company in southern Arizona. Why? Well, that’s a really  long story so let’s just leave it at we have this investment and we are working our tails off to get it on the track to functioning in the black and within all of the governing agency’s guidelines.
That said, we started out on a journey to get a rate increase last year. It took a year of data and document collection to get to the point of filling out the 50 page application – which turned out to be over 200 pages once we added all of our supporting documents. Many months, many hours of auditing by the corporation commission, many inspections, many meetings, many nasty letters from customers, many problems and roadblocks, many tears and many “if we don’t laugh we’re going to cry” moments later, we got it. After waiting nearly 6 hours to be heard in an open meeting before the commission, the final vote was 4 yeses and 1 no – a win for us.
I was sick with nerves all day waiting for our turn to be heard – so when the decision was made, the relief of the moment felt more like a hang over and less like victory. Today, it’s sinking in that we did it. We have taken a failing company and in just over 2 years have brought back into the black (even if it’s just barely in the black, it’s black by God). We’re not done yet, we still need a loan and then start a massive construction project which are daunting all on their own. But damn it if we’re not one big step closer to the finish line. And yet another reason to celebrate with a large bottle of wine in October. Until then, Ben and Jerry’s will have to do!