As some of you may know, River (my just turned 2 year old Son) was recently diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes.
In due time I will likely set up a blog and secondary site about River’s T1D story but just wanted to touch on some basic things here today and how it relates to my business going forward.
To start with , it obviously threw a huge spanner in the works during the lead up to Valentine’s Day. Whilst sales went well , I wasn’t able to do the marketing I had planned to move the stock I invested in at start of January. So I do have a lot of stock on hand at the moment and I’m being very generous with the Mystery Boxes I am making up, so if you have been thinking of buying one of those, not only would I really appreciate it and it would help me out here, but you also are getting a great range of products and amazing value too.
I really want to thank everyone that did have orders placed over this time when I was away the week prior to his diagnosis (our first family holiday ever) then the following week in the hospital, I was so bloody anxious everyone would be pissed off at me for the 1-2 week delay in dispatching orders, but I got nothing but support and well wishes, you have no idea how much that helped to take some of that work stress and pressure off me whilst I was learning overnight how to keep my child alive.
Each week we go to the Queensland Children’s Hospital for training and appointments so I am one day behind each week at the moment. I am also barely working weekends anymore as I need rest. I am sleeping on average 2-4hrs a night so weekends I just need to relax so my brain and body can work during the week. I already recently hired Sara to come here and help me out about 12hrs a week (well re-hired , as Sara previously worked for me many years ago and I’m so lucky to have her back here helping me). Sara is helping me with marketing and website so I can focus on customer service and sourcing new products , creating new boxes and rolling out some what I think, amazing and unique ideas coming soon. Also helps to have 2 hands on deck with River as he is home with me 24/7 and diabetes sure as shit ain’t slowing this kid down.
For many years I used all the different couriers and there was too many issues and complaints regards these couriers so I have made the transition to Australia Post, which I know may seem a bit backwards, but I am getting good pricing (as you will see I’ve lowered my pricing now to the customer at a flat rate of only $8.95) and having barely any issues with them and any that have arised have been promptly sorted and I don’t seem to cop the abuse over that I once did when using couriers (I guess people can’t tell me I need to use another Postal service when there is only one option, whereas when I used couriers, regardless of which one, I would be told not to use that courier). Reason I am mentioning this here is that I have to drive into town with River (and sometimes the other 2 kids too) each day to post all the orders, now most the time this is fine, but from now on if its raining or he is still napping or I am far too tired to be behind the wheel or his levels are just too unstable then I am just not going and will go the next day. As stated on my website I need 5 business days to dispatch orders, now that rarely occurs, usually I dispatch next day, if you ever need anything urgently please discuss with me prior to ordering to see if its possible.
When River was first diagnosed (a month ago now) I thought I’d have to walk away from this business that I love so much and that is finally doing well and I can finally see the rewards from 3 years of 80hr work weeks and hundreds of thousands of dollars invested. I am glad now along with Sara’s help and the support of my lovely customers I will be able to continue. Going forward as of the 1st March I will be donating $1 from every order to the JDRF (this is the foundation that gave us a grant for a $10,000 pump for River) and I will also be putting an additional $1 from every order aside into a bank account for River to pay for his future pumps and consumables (the pumps are around $10,000 and have to be replaced every 4 years for rest of his life). If I ever get into a financial position where I can increase both these amounts then I will 100% do so but for now that will likely be about $200 a month to JDRF and $200 a month to River’s Bank Account. I would love more then anything if you are in a position to do so, to donate to JDRF , they do amazing things in the world of diabetes but just the fact alone that more money raised for JDRF more grants they can give to families to purchase their child a pump. We will be forever grateful and my goal in life will be to repay them, to lift any financial burden to River once he becomes an Adult and hopefully help anyone else I can along the way. Once I set up a blog for River’s T1D journey ill announce it on my social media so if you wish to learn more about it and follow our story you can there.
Thanks again for your support