January 17, 2020

Never too late to learn

By on December 10, 2019 0 237Views

How motherhood paved the path into education and entrepreneurship

First, I would like to start by saying my former position as an equipment operator was a chapter in my life that led me to the love of my life. And eventually, to the birth of my beautiful baby girl.

It led me to meet and become lifelong friends with many amazing people. It taught me the value of money and the sacrifice shift workers make to provide for their families. It taught me the importance of the oil industry for our province and our country.

After the birth of her daughter, Katie Mcinnes enrolled in nursing school and launched her own collection of handmade dolls.

But most of all, it taught me about me: What I wanted out of my life and what I didn’t want.

As I neared seven years working on heavy machinery for a large oil company, my life took a turn down a dark path. I was depressed, riddled with anxiety and fear, and felt as if I would wake up one day years down the road and regret my life.

I had this constant feeling in my chest that I was in the wrong place. That feeling turned into daily panic attacks, as I sat in my dozer with the door open trying to grab some air. No matter how much money I made. No matter how much vacation time I had, or how great of schedule, it was never enough.

Something was missing in my life, and I needed to find out what that was. I would research for hours and hours to try and find my way out of the job that I felt trapped in. Once I started voicing how I felt, I was called many things: crazy, ungrateful, naive, reckless, too old, not smart enough.

In all my efforts to close my ears and drown out what other people had to say about the direction of my life, I couldn’t. Trapped in other people’s ideas of what success was and what life was, I was stuck. My family, partner, friends all had an opinion about what was the right thing to do.

A Birth of New Beginnings

In August 2017, we found out we were expecting. By April 2018, I finally held my baby girl in my arms. It wasn’t until I looked into my daughter’s eyes for the very first time that all the voices disappeared. She was my answer.

For any Greys Anatomy fans out there, she was my heart in a box. The key I needed to decide what was most important in life. This pure and perfect little soul was given to me to be her mother, her supporter, the person she looks up to.

Everything became so clear. All I had to do was ask myself: “What would I want for her? What does she deserve?”

I had applied for nursing school for three years in a row at Keyano College. (Three years!) While I was working shift work, I was upgrading all my high school courses in hopes that one day they would accept me. When Madelyn was two months old, I got my acceptance letter in an email.

At first, I thought: How is this possible!? Just when I have a baby and start maternity leave, I get accepted to start school in two months.

Now, I believe everything happened exactly how it was supposed to. I often wonder if I would have gone into the program earlier, would I have had a child? If I didn’t have a child, would I have ever quit my job?

See where I’m going with this? Everything will happen how it is supposed to happen.

Now, into my second year of nursing school, I feel free. Not on- top-of-the-world with financial freedom, traveling-through-Europe free. I mean free of my depression. Free of the sheer panic that my previous job brought me every single day. I feel alive.

The funny thing is, I have never worked so hard in my entire life, but it is work that feeds my soul. My heart is full at the end of every day to give to my family. I am slowly finding myself again. My dreams and passion to help people and make a difference in people’s lives are emerging.

I no longer struggle with the question: “What is my purpose?” And although I am yet to find that answer, I know I am on the right path.

The Launch of Tea Over Tales

Last year, I decided to launch Tea Over Tales because, in my heart, it felt like the right time to try and uniquely help a lot of people. The idea was inspired by my late grandmother. I wanted to make it come to life, and I knew it was possible with hard work.

Tea Over Tales is a local business featuring reversible handmade dolls created by company founder Katie Mcinnes.

So, here I am, after a long day taking care of a sick baby, cleaning the house, writing a reflection for school, getting doll orders filled and about to go fold laundry and all I can think about is creating something to give back to every one of you.

Amid my exhaustion, there’s nothing I would rather do right now than share this story with my community and the people I could potentially help.

I wrote this story not to justify my decision or preach that everyone should quit their jobs and go back to school. I wrote this to let people know if you are unhappy in your life, and you feel like your drowning in your current situation it is up to YOU to change that.

Somehow, someway, you have to drown out the opinions of everyone in your life and focus on your path in life. At the end of the road, we all end up in the same place. Now is the only time we get to explore who we are: to be different, venture outside the common path, and live the life we chose.

About the author

Founder & Creator at | Website

Katie Mcinnes is a nursing student at Keyano College and an aspiring entrepreneur. She started Tea Over Tales in 2019, a platform for children to create and share their stories. She has set her sights on finding a fulfilling career path in health care and impacting the community that has contributed to her success. Katie calls Fort McMurray home after returning to her place of birth at the age of 19 in hopes of a bright future and reconnecting with family. She spends her time caring for her little girl, studying for school, and filling every spare minute working on the mission and vision of her company.

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