Learning, growing, and elevating

For those of you that don’t know my story let me give you a brief synopsis….for those of you that do know my story… you know that brief is not in my wheelhouse, but I promise it will be worth the read!

I have been in the industry for 21 years. I came from a very small country town where luxury salons did not exist, so I had no idea the possibilities that a career in beauty held. I just knew I needed a career, my dad suggested cosmetology school, and I said “Ooooohhhh, fun”. It was while attending Hair Professionals in Oswego that I met my first mentors and the people who would change the trajectory of my entire life, Stephen and Tricia Wake, owners of Focas salon in Saint Charles, IL. This is where I began my career and my adult life. I was introduced to a side of hair and beauty that opened my eyes to an endless amount of possibilities.

I spent 12 years at Focas, learning, growing, elevating, and expanding my mind and my skills. I felt like I had hit a ceiling. I thought the only way for me to continue to grow was to go off on my own. I left Focas in the most beautifully respectful way my industry has ever seen. I began my solo journey in a very small suite. The plan was to take 2 years to save money and to learn business on a small scale and then expand. That is exactly what happened…2 years, almost to the day. My career was sky rocketing but my home life was plummeting. My 19 old daughter had become pregnant and right after the birth of my grandson I found out my husband of 13 years was having an affair. Having been a teen mother myself, this was not the vision I had for my own child. I was heartbroken, terrified, betrayed, and angry. With a new business, a new grandson, and a daughter that desperately needed my support I made the decision to try to forgive my husband and salvage our marriage. We worked on it for a little over a year.

On Sunday October 11, 2015 I was sitting on the porch of my Oswego home enjoying a cup of coffee. It was a cool, crisp, picturesque fall morning. Quiet, with the faintest scent of leaves burning somewhere in the neighborhood. One second, I was at peace and the next second, I felt like I had just been hit with a ton of bricks. I realized that in 1 month I would be the same age my Mother was when she was killed in her car accident. I was 17, pregnant, and marrying my daughter’s Father 2 days later. 22 years later, I have what would be my biggest breakthrough moment ever. On that porch, that beautiful autumn morning, I realized “this is all the life my Mother every lived”. I suddenly began to feel that I was living on borrowed time. I realized more than ever that every single day is a gift and it must be treated as such. It was at that exact moment, everything changed. I made the decision to live an intentional life. Every decision I made, every action, every move would have meaning and purpose. I took a long hard look at my life and knew that things had to change. Big things… difficult things. I was going to have to make decisions that not only impacted my life but the life of 5 other people… my husband at the time, my stepson, stepdaughter, my daughter, and my grandson. I could no longer live my life the way I was living after this awakening.

That moment in time has impacted every single moment since. Everything has changed. I was divorced in 6 months, pushed my adult children and step children into independence, downsized from a 2800 sq foot home in Oswego to an 850 sq ft home in Saint Charles, and remarried, my high school flame.

I share this with you because I am making another huge move, but this time I am taking you with me. Intentionally Lola was a blog that was birthed during that time of my life. Over time, I couldn’t help but notice this overwhelming feeling to marry Lola and Intentionally Lola. I didn’t know what that looked like. I had no clue how that would come together. Well, step by step… moment by moment… Intentionally Lola has become a part of Lola. Where Lola is our hair salon…Intentionally Lola is our Soul Salon. A space dedicated to things that warm your heart and soul. Partnered with a podcast in which we share personal journeys that have moved us and a blog in which I bare my soul and offer my very unique perspective on life and all it’s many components.

I invite you to experience Intentionally Lola, a boutique. Everything has been hand-chosen or handmade by the women of Lola. This is a unique, special place that needs to be experienced. Partnered with a salon that is dedicated to helping you look and feel your very best we truly are able to “Change the World One Head at a Time” inside and out.

Share this… spread our message. There are so many people that need this. We have to be vulnerable enough to spread this message. Intentional, be intentional.

Is there something in your life that needs to change but you are too afraid to do it….please take my energy…use it…make it yours. WE CAN DO HARD THINGS (Thank you Glennon Doyle).

Live the life you desire…it is possible. When the fear doesn’t leave, you’ll just have to do it scared

Xoxo,

Gina

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