For Her Sweet Love

When people first meet me, they almost always ask me two questions.

Why did I decide to start my own business and where did the name For Thy Sweet Love come from.

I rarely answer those questions completely.

I feel compelled now to share the full story.

In February 2014, I flew to Cologne Germany to spend 2 weeks with me best friend.

My dear friend Nuha had been told that she had cancer a year earlier.

Having not responded to Chemotherapy and Radio Therapy, she had left her 2 beautiful children in Lebanon to start on a course of “alternative” therapies in Germany.

By the time I got there, my beautiful friend had lost half her body weight and all her hair.

It was clear that she was struggling but nothing could dim her bright and beautiful smile.

It was cold in Cologne. Nuha loved the cooler weather. We would rug up, link arms and head out each day from the small studio apartment she had rented near the clinic.

We were determined to make the most of each day.

One evening, a few nights before I was due to come home, we were having a heart to heart.

I asked Nuha what the happiest day of her life was. I wasn’t expecting her reply. Nuha had travelled the world, she had 2 beautiful children, she had achieved many things in her life. I was taken aback to hear her say that the happiest day of her life was the day she resigned from her job. It broke my heart.

Nuha was a secondary school teacher. She loved her students and her workmates. She had for some years struggled with the early hours, the traffic to and from school, and all she really wanted was to be able to spend more time with her kids.

She knew I had been unhappy in my corporate role for some years. She looked me in the eye and said “promise me when you get home that you will follow your heart”. I knew she was right. I made her my promise.

Nuha passed a couple of months later. I had fallen back into my usual rut following my trip to Cologne. Her passing hit me like a tonne of bricks. I buried myself with work in an effort to distract myself from the pain. To be honest, it didn’t help. I should have known that nothing could actually help.

A few months down the track, I was miserable at work but still pushing forward.

I suddenly remembered my conversation with Nuha and the promise I had made to her.

I think it came to me in a dream. Possibly a whisper from the afterlife.

Once that happened, there was no stopping me. The least I could do was honour the promise I made to my friend.

I knew that I no longer wanted to work for other people. I knew that I wanted to adhere to my own core values. I knew that anything I entered into had to be joyful. As I promised Nuha, I followed my heart and it led me to start For Thy Sweet Love. I dedicated my new business to my sorely missed and loved sweet friend. She is the Thy. She is my inspiration. She is my rock. When I doubt whether or not I’ve made the right decision I think back to those 2 weeks in Cologne and I keep moving forward in the direction my heart is leading me. I know that Nuha is watching over me and I know that she would be proud of me.

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