It’s been almost six years since the initial concept of Darling Way came to me and I almost don’t remember who I was before this idea became my dream and then my reality. While I admit that I loved the concept of a store like this immediately, it took time for it to snowball enough in my own mind to cause me to be willing to risk my time, effort, reputation and money in pursuit of building a boutique and brand from nothing. So I can understand why this unusual career leap seems a bit inexplicable to others. It may be that there is no amount of explanation that can truly really convey the passion that drove me to professionally abandon my years of legal training in pursuit of success as an entrepreneur specializing in romance, but here is the best I can tell you:
- Obviously, I am a bit crazy. Let’s just get that out of the way so we can move on to reasons why I am taking my crazy in this direction rather than another road like practicing family law again. (Argh!)
I am a sappy, emotional, optimistic, hopelessly romantic idealist. I believe in happy fairy tales and forever love; I want them for myself and for everyone. I want to build a space that welcomes dreamers and feelers; a destination where all are encouraged to indulge our hearts’ need for passion, hope, excitement, true love, and inspiration.
- In my former career as a family law attorney, I was surrounded by people dealing with matters of grief, loss and anger. No matter how much I helped make things better, I couldn’t make things good. I was incapable of representing people and not caring deeply, so I was often burdened by the sorrows of my clients. Even the best of my days were gray and I yearned for sunshine and happiness around me.
I think that romantic intimacy is the greatest gift in this life and I believe that we should encourage people to celebrate it within long term, committed relationships. I want to extinguish the pervading cultural misperception that the most exciting connections are to be had with strangers, only when one is young or without depth of feeling for the other.
- It is my belief that the longevity and commitment invested in relationships should create a safe harbor for each partner to express and explore their inner desires; couples deserve a place with their needs in mind. Ideas, props, counsel, encouragement and discretion should be readily available to people who recognize the value and significance of intimacy enough to expend effort in developing the depth of the connection.
I have always loved talking about romance, heartbreak and intimate topics with any and everyone. Very few people are comfortable discussing intimate topics with friends or strangers, but I am happy talking with both. I happen to be someone who loves little more than hearing people’s most personal stories and trying to help them.
- People talk to me. They feel safe opening up with me. It is not uncommon for even new acquaintances to tell me secrets they sometimes haven’t even admitted to themselves. I am honored that they know they can trust me. It may be that I am so openly, obviously imperfect and off-beat that they know I won’t judge them. Perhaps it’s because I usually like people more when I really know them, not less. Regardless, because people are willing to share things with me, we are able to have frank discussions about sensitive matters. Sometimes my unique perspective is helpful to them; sometimes they feel better simply by virtue of acknowledging their uncertainties while still being respected.
- I want everyone to be happy. I want to change the world. I want to provide the opportunity for people to honor, celebrate, respect and embrace the joyful intimacy that a long term relationship can provide opportunity for. I want to be a cheerleader, resource, safe harbor and resource for those seeking to maintain, renew, excite or re-ignite their relationships. I believe that a healthy lifestyle consists of a well-balanced diet, moderate exercise, plenty of sleep and rewarding intimacy. Towards this, I want to develop a place that people feel empowered, confident, proud and happy to give their intimate lives the care, attention and respect it deserves.