This post is one that I have been hesitant to release as its a personal journey that I had felt almost too vulnerable to express.
The pace at which ACCIDA has run is counter to fast fashion, so slow... I suppose. But also not really. There have been many hours spent behind the scenes lost in throes of it all and scrambling to make things work. In keeping with the ethos, the artisans and collections are in small batch and without deadline. This is to keep stock at a minimum (low waste) and to also alleviate any stress to the lives of the makers and collaborators. As life as an artist and creative is unpredictable enough - our economic model isn’t exactly one that cradles entrepreneurship into growth - so I try fill this space where we can in order to encourage makers to focus on production and leaving the rest to ACCIDA. When I say "us" I really mean, well.. just me, and perhaps maybe the occasional freelancer I can squeeze in if the sales allow it.
I have founded ACCIDA on these values, at many times even neglected to practice them in my own life and operations. Like most people in business the sacrifice can come to ones quality of life, even ones wellbeing. Though, this is seen as a noble sacrifice for the freedom of expression and the dream of self employment. It can come at the cost of expanding a family, developing relationships or maintaining a healthy lifestyle AND with the stressors of constant fear that maybe looming in the unforeseeable the whole thing will be halted entirely. Dun dun duuuun!
ACCIDA has not been my first venture and it's given me the callouses to handle the heavy lifting. I have had many careers, followed many paths, being offered businesses and partnerships and all sorts of opportunities I jumped at. No matter how big or small, it was and always is a gamble. My capital was paid with time, ambition maybe a touch of grit, all jumbled together and used carelessly like it was a limitless resource.
This year I have had to suddenly learn new limitations. I have inadvertently fulfilled my intention of being more mindful and in turn finding a way of slowing down so that I may live a more authentic and balanced life.
Only a month after the launch of ACCIDA I had been diagnosed with a stage two Adrenal cancer. In a flurry, I had surgery removing an impressive 9cm mass. With a 30cm incision across my abdomen, swollen guts and 27 staples we went straight into fertility preservation in preparation for chemo. I am now on treatment that will take years before the impact of it may reduce the percentage of regrowth. With all of this said, everything scrambled up, hormones, painful recovery, at the whim of medical services... I am finally at a new normal. I am finally here, in a state of comprehension.
I am and will be forever grateful for all the support I have received from friends and family but also with a deeper understanding and appreciation I have for health care and what it means to be treated humanely and have my dire needs met with priority and care.
I am now living slow, but not slowing down.
It has taken the looming reminder of mortality that has allowed me to finally be able to slow down and really live and reflect on my values. While the journey has been rocky, it is when we come close to an end that we seem to know what we truly find precious to us. Alongside many beautiful appreciations in my life, ACCIDA is so significant to me. A true calling and vision, and hope that with time and patience I can bring this to surface in full capacity and do my artisans proud in representing them moving forward.