Ed: Sydney Chaney Thomas is a Moraga-based writer and businesswoman with three books to her name, all currently available on Amazon. She is also co-founder of a sustainable sailing apparel company called Ocean SF, and operates a nonprofit that works to reduce plastic waste called the The Trident Project.
Sydney teaches entrepreneurial marketing at UC Berkeley in their International Diploma Program and, in addition to this column, she writes a popular lifestyle blog, which can be found at sydneychaneythomas.com.
Transition, Work & Motherhood
July 13, 2018
Since breaking my arm on Father’s Day for the second year in a row I am determined to learn the lesson the Universe has been trying to teach me.
I have always been a fiercely independent person. I thought nothing of driving to Canada by myself at sixteen. At twenty I left for Europe and studied and traveled alone for a year. I met many friends along the way of course, but if I wanted to go somewhere, or do something I simply went unaccompanied. I enjoy my solitude, and little scares me. However, the thing that I most abhor is asking for help.
It’s been very frustrating to not be able to put my hair in a ponytail or tie my shoes. I have to ask for help for even the most minor things. Last year when I broke my arm, I was mostly functional, but this time it was much worse. Luckily, I’ve been able to continue my side hustles, but everyone has to help me. To me this is maddening. Yet, I’ve had no choice, there is nothing to do, but surrender.
Now, I alternate waking one or the other of my daughters to brush my hair and pull it back for me in the morning before leaving for work. My Aussy houseguest has helped me with everything from chopping garlic to cleaning the pool filter. At the gas station people run over to pump my gas, and although I can do it myself, I step back and allow it.
The gift of the broken arm has been that I fully surrender to the Universe and because of it I’ve watched some miraculous situations unfold in my personal and professional life. These are more than mere coincidences. They resonate with my favorite quote from author Paulo Coelho, who wrote in the Alchemist:
“And, when you want something the Universe conspires in helping you achieve it.”
I will keep you posted as things unfold…
Sydney Chaney Thomas