Being Dior Bediako
In 2016, I achieved a lot! I started a business called Pepper Your Talk, which is an ‘access all areas’ platform that works to fill the void experienced upon leaving the education system whilst finding your feet in the fashion industry, off the back of this I have met so many of my industry role models, I've been invited to speak at events and I've grown an audience who support and believe in me. I had finally reached a stage where all my career experience was validated and I began to understand the power and direction of my convictions to launch PYT. In the same year, I went on a beautiful break to Thailand and I threw an amazing 25th birthday party and learnt even more about the fashion industry than I ever had.
In contrast to these achievements and high moments, I also experienced a parallel reality of lows simultaneously because I worried - a lot!
My whole life had changed. I had indeed stepped out and started a business which meant I no longer had the security of a salary and my savings dwindled into nothing. Many times, I would silently cry into my pillow. My friends went on holidays that I could no longer participate in and I had to reduce my lifestyle to a few ‘necessities’. I had to calculate every purchase decision I made as well as justify every business decision, all the while wondering if I’d made the right decision in leaving my job at Burberry to pursue my passion.
Sometimes, many times, I felt like I was suffocating on all the fresh air around me. The perfect oxymoron to describe the state of my life. It sounds dramatic and if anyone that was close to me during that period read this, they’d think I was exaggerating because I never showed it. Nobody would ever see me sad, cry or worried.
2017 came and I was determined to never feel like that again! I promised myself and started each day with optimism and enthusiasm. By the time it got to May, drawing closer to my 26th birthday, the suffocation came back. I cried so hard sometimes that my eyes were red for the whole day. To everyone else, it was hay fever because that was the story I needed them to believe. I didn’t confide in anyone but God. To be honest, I can’t say I felt like He was hearing me, I just didn’t have anyone else I wanted to speak to.
casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you
1 Peter 5:7
My reason for keeping it to myself was not because I wanted everything to seem perfect. Because I’m the type of person who'll be first to let a friend tag an ugly pic of me because the world needs to know that ‘it be’s like that sometimes’ hahaha! But this was different, I felt like God was dealing with me on the inside, in a way that nobody else would understand even if I explained it. I also didn’t want to make a big deal of it because some days I was fine and other days I felt burdened by my passion. It was a like a rollercoaster that only God could ride the peaks and dips with. Deep down I knew that my destiny and purpose were bigger than my current situation and I was sure that my financial situation would pick up again and I could get back to being me. I knew that the process was necessary and just a season where I needed to be stripped down to be built back up again and that's personal, not an 'access all areas' like PYT, this was between me and God so I kept it that way. I also knew that God was humbling me because a time was coming when I’d win big, but I’d always need to stay mindful of ‘the process’.
A time to kill,
And a time to heal;
A time to break down,
And a time to build up
A time to weep,
And a time to laugh;
A time to mourn,
And a time to dance
One day during prayer, I put on a YouTube playlist which started off with one of my favourite Hillsong songs ‘Oceans’. Next came on ‘Even when it hurts’ and mate, it hurt so bad. Even as I’m writing this I want to snatch my words back because I’m not sure if I’m ready to share my deepest insecurities. I felt so conflicted between being blessed with a passion that I cared so deeply for but all the hard changes it had brought into my life.
Don’t get me wrong, I wasn’t depressed and still enjoyed moments of feeling very grateful but there was just a heaviness. You know that feeling when you want something so bad but don’t really understand how you’re going to get it. I didn’t want to celebrate my 26th birthday because I didn’t think there was anything to celebrate. I was immensely grateful for life itself but nothing felt special about it. I got dressed and walked around Knightsbridge for hours, my dream neighbourhood and genuine happy place, to remind myself of where I dream to be.
Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus
There’s no big conclusion for being Dior Bediako because there hasn’t been a big conclusion for my life just yet. I simply get up every day and work towards achieving my goals. It’s still uncomfortable at times and I still worry too but it doesn’t feel dark. I’m ambitious and won’t rest until I’m at the top of everything I’m committed to. I just don’t know how long it will take and that’s the most annoying part and probably the source of anxiety. Everything single thing we do in life is committed to a deadline - everything! If you’re married you know roughly what time your partner will walk through the door every day, if you have kids you know what time they wake up every morning, if you work you know how long it takes to walk to the train station, food shopping never takes more than an hour, I challenge myself to park my car in less than a minute, I’ve even learnt how long it takes to boil the perfect egg HA! And because we’re aware of these details we can plan accordingly. Life fits into tidy little slots and we have control.
But how long does it take to receive everything God has promised you?
Earlier this year, I committed this verse into my daily prayer:
For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.
If you read this and the feelings resonated with you, firstly, you don’t have to feel so alone. Take comfort in the fact that it’s really common for us future millionaires :)
Commit to this verse for 1 week, memorise it, say it every day. Write it down, and put it on your fridge or save it as your screen saver. I don’t know when you’ll make it, I don’t know when the ache of unfulfilled purpose will leave you, I don’t even know if you’re on the right track. But, I guarantee you this, because I believe it with everything within me, whilst you’re waiting, God is working for YOU!
And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.