So excited to announce our partnership with Camp Gloss for our Girl Riot bracelet! The idea of “Girl Riot” was where Crystalline Tribe was born. I have told the story in bits and pieces but here we go….the more in-depth version.
Getting divorced was the hardest most miserable thing I have ever been through. This was NOT an easy decision. It was one that took years to make and created a depression inside me that I almost didn’t come back from. Sometimes I think people think I just woke up one day and decided I wanted a different life. The number of times I heard “Do you think the grass is greener on the other side?” …. “you chose to leave” …. like I was just playing a board game and hadn’t run every option through my head a million times until I almost went crazy.
We had separated once before two years prior and had been in and out of counseling for a couple of years. I knew when I did decide to make the decision to leave it was going to be hard and that I would probably be left with not much but in my heart I also wanted to believe that this was a man I had spent 17 years with…half my life, two children later, that somehow we could come out of it as friends.
Well, I crashed into a wall of reality HARD. When people say change is hard and if you are truly changing it will hurt, there is no way to describe the pain, fear, and chaos that took place next. I could not have been prepared for how bad it HURT. Not only did I lose the person I thought was my best friend, I felt like I was destroying my kid's lives and my world was crashing down around me. The quick timeline was I realized for the health of myself and my children I had to move out of my dream home. Everyone told me not to (including my lawyer) and asked why I would leave my home. I had to protect myself and my children from the chaos. The things that were taking place and that were being said were not okay. Then I went to pay a bill and was locked out of our bank accounts. That feeling of betrayal and craziness makes me feel like I can’t breathe right now at this moment. I went to the bank to find out how he could legally do that on a joint account and I find out I was only a “signer” on the account. A signer! What?!!!! How did I not know this? These were our accounts! With no idea how I was going to even afford to move into a new place and no option of my ex-giving me money until our divorce went through, my world was crumbling.
I walked in my lawyer's office a mess. Crying, I begged for help and said I had no idea how I would pay her. She was amazing and said we would figure it out later. Then we started to go over everything I realized how little I had protected myself in this partnership. I had always worked multiple jobs supporting my ex’s dreams of business ownership. I had worked 3 jobs, 3 different times when he wasn’t working to pay the mortgage on our house. I had done nothing but kill myself to make someone else’s reality and I had nothing to show for it.
As we went over things, I was at a loss that I didn’t take any time to make sure I would be protected. The first divorce offer I got, I was offered $0 for a business that literally almost killed me when my children were babies. I worked non stop hours making this business a success and at the time was my only real source of income. So I was losing my income too. How would I support my family? How can this be possible to even be in this situation?
My lawyer explained how many women she sees daily that are in this situation. She then used the words “You learned how to do things this way.” I learned it! From who??? I grew up with a single mom. Did I learn it from society? When did the little girl who never dream of getting married suddenly become the woman who worked her ass off but was just viewed as the housewife?
Then the divorce became finalized. When I got to court, I got the monetary amount that was due to me for the house and the business. I had no say in the house or business but I got a fair check. Now it was time to start over. Figure out how I was going to support myself and the kids. I waved alimony because I didn’t want to be tied in any way to the situation anymore so I didn’t have much time to figure it out.
This is when I came up with Girl Riot. I NEVER want my daughter to be in this situation. I decided on the word Riot because Riots are meant to evoke change. It isn’t negative it is powerful. If I can make a light bulb go off in one little girl’s head to make sure they protect themselves and their assets then I have saved one little girl from ever feeling the despair and chaos I felt.
When I first heard about Camp Gloss last year I immediately sent an email asking if I could meet with them. When I got the opportunity to meet with Jessica, it was like she had stolen all of the words from my brain. She said she sees a lot of women who go through a divorce and if they had set themselves up differently they wouldn’t be in as much emotional trauma so she felt the need to teach young girls life skills that will help them in adulthood.
From campgloss.com: This camp aims to address the complex paradigm of success and life-fulfillment for young women through an experiential, supportive, and collaborative learning environment. Camp GLOSS is named after five foundational pillars of success including: Grit, Leadership, Opportunity, Service, and Self-Awareness. Research has made it clear that women face a unique set of challenges entering into college, careers, and family life. Our aim is to help young women learn skills, personal strengths and weaknesses so they may approach the next phase of their life with confidence and excitement.
Camp Vision: We envision a world where young women actualize their potential through developing perseverance, confidence to seize opportunities, leadership skills, an expanded worldview, and self-awareness.
This is exactly what our young girls need. This is what I have been dreaming about in my head. I want to empower our next generation. I want to save someone from the stress and chaos that I went through.
This is for my daughter. This is for the little girl who needs their voice. This bracelet is meant to empower and teach self-love. You are enough. You can achieve all your dreams. Stand in your power and your voice will be heard.
Every bracelet is different just like the individual wearing it. We are all unique beings beautiful in our own ways. The stones are selected at random and each one has a different amount of each stone. The combination of these stones will help you overcome your fears and empower you to make your dreams come true.
I am beyond excited to donate $10 from every Girl Riot bracelet to this program. I am taking one of the most negative chapters of my life and I am turning it into a positive.
Girl Riot has more to come. This is just the beginning.