Courtney and Dana unpack last week’s episode (Apple Podcasts | Spotify) with Inez Ribustello, author of Life After Windows and owner or Tarboro Brewing Company. They talk about why it’s ok for their kids to swear, when they can stop caring about other people’s opinions, and what books they would write (and maybe one day will).
Courtney: Like you have to allow that space to like process and to grieve and to get to the other side, because there’s always going to be things that you’re grieving in life. Not necessarily just the finality of losing a person, but it could be a business, it could be yourself. It could be an idea. It could be, you know, a relationship.
Courtney: Welcome everyone to Hustle and Gather, a podcast by inspiring the everyday entrepreneur to take the leap. I’m Courtney
Dana: and I’m Dana
Courtney: And we are two sisters who love business. On this show, we talk about the ups and downs to the hustle and the reward at the end of the journey.
Dana: And we know all the challenges that come with starting a business. Between operating our wedding venue, doing speaking and consulting, and starting our luxury wedding planning company, we wake up and hustle every day
Courtney: And today we’re talking, just the two of us, about last week’s episode with Inez Ribustello, owner of On the Square restaurant, owner of Tarboro Brewing Company, and author of her self published memoir Life after Windows. If you haven’t heard last week’s episode, go give it a listen and come back to hear our thoughts.
Dana: All right. Court let’s get started.
Courtney: Oh, that was so good.
Dana: It was so good. I like, I had to hold back some like an emotion.
Courtney: I know I was captivated by her story.
Dana: I just couldn’t stop like listening to her talk. She has a very soothing voice.
Courtney: I felt that same way, but it was just so, so good and so relevant. I love that she was speaking of years that I remember greatly and think about as like the heyday, right. so that was super fun too. But yeah. What an inspiring story.
Dana: I know. I feel like today’s going to be a little bit heavier. Yeah. Like a lot of heavy things are, think are still valid to talk about and go through. I really loved, when she first talked about the book, how she did it for herself and that that was enough for her, that she just did it for her. And I made me think about what book would I publish. That would be for me, that I would feel like I would need to help move on with life or something
Courtney: like a processing book?
Dana: Yeah. Like what would that, what would it be that I’m trying to process through?
Courtney: I don’t know. What would it be that you’re trying to process through?
Dana: I don’t know. I honestly think like, it would be about like becoming a mom. Like it’s, I think that there was a lot of excitement and expectations. And as you become a parent, I feel like there’s a lot of fear and trepidation of you’re doing the right thing and yeah, and really like that first, like four or five years of coming into my own. And like now, like as a mother, as a mother, like, I was so nervous about what everybody else thought.
And I was so nervous to like speak up for my kids. You know, like when I think about like pivotal moments, like Ada being really sick, like my gut told me something was wrong, but I was so afraid to say anything, because I was like, I’m in front of a doctor. Like, why would I know more than a doctor? Yeah, you know, and recognizing like that doctor doesn’t know Ada more than I know Ada, you know?
And when people try to tell me something about my kid and I’m just, it makes me like second guess things, and I’m like, no, like I know my child, like I know that’s not an accurate accurate representation of who they are, you know, like just kind of coming into that confidence of being a mom, yeah.
Courtney: So it’s about being a mom?
Dana: Maybe not being a parent, a little bit more inclusive.
Dana: What would yours be about?
Courtney: It’s so interesting. I, as podcasts, I have no idea what Dana is going to say and like what I’m anticipating her saying.
I don’t even know. I really don’t know, but I did not anticipate the direction of motherhood. Well, I will say that I tend to dissipate.
Dana: There has been a lot of life has happened in the past month and there’s been a lot of things. I don’t think I could even read a memoir right now. We’re in process. Now, if you ask me this question, maybe in five years, it could be completely different.
Yeah, but as of right now at this phase of life, I feel like I have been through, I’ve gone through, I can read a memoir about it and recognize like where I was and how I was stronger at the end of it, that phase of life. And it’s still happening obviously. But that part of my life, that first 10 years of being a parent is definitely one that I can process through.
Courtney: I mean, there’ll be some aspect of my memoir of being a parent, for sure. But I think when I think about it, it’d be more along the lines of like how to lose yourself and find yourself again.
Dana: I’m not surprised in these podcasts. I knew exactly what you’re going to say.
Courtney: Cause it’s really about that. Or like even just, I don’t know, overcoming people pleasing, I think how to be true to yourself.
Dana: Being who you’re meant to be, being who you’re meant to be and not being ashamed of it.
Courtney: Right. So I think there’s a lot of that. Like, there’s been a lot of that for like my personal journey of like figuring out who I am without context, right? Like without, in relation to Dana or in relation to Mikael or in relation to my children or in relation to my mother in relation to my father. Who is Courtney, just as Courtney, which I think is so important.
And I think, I think it could be instrumental to lots of women because I think a lot of women define themselves based on how they relate to other people, maybe how they’re in service to other people or maybe how they’re useful or not useful to other people. So yeah, I think probably be something along those lines of like the journey to discovering oneself. And I can’t even say that it’s over because it’s a continual journey.
Dana: I feel like this is just like solidifies that I know you better than you know me.
Courtney: I think it’s solidifies that I use more words in our relationship. Probably a little more open as to where I’m at. Cause I’m just there. That’s where I’m at.
Dana: Probably true, yeah okay. Yeah. I, I really, I think what I knew when I knew like, that interview was going to be like, kind of amazing was early on when she talked about her move to New York, because we have interviewed a lot of people who have gone from like a small town or like a Southern area and then moved to like a big city and they’re like, oh my God, it was so shocking.The transition was so hard. Like I was so lonely.
Courtney: It’s amazing to me though, like side note, how many people come back, everyone comes back to North Carolina.
Dana: I think it’s family, but yeah,
Courtney: I think so. I guess we never left North Carolina.
Dana: Right. So anyways, but I love when she was telling me when she was saying how there wasn’t a transition because she felt so free all of a sudden. And I feel like it’s really made me think about where there moments in my life when I went from one, either phase of life, when surrounding in life, like whether it was like where I lived or the job I was in. And, and you find yourself in that go from one to the other.
And when you get to the point, you’re like, oh my God, I’m free. Or I’m finally where I’m meant to be. You’re finally like here, this peace and this freedom, like this is where I was supposed to be. You know, I thought that was a really a powerful visual yeah for her.
Courtney: Well, I thought I felt like she felt free, like the freedom of re-invention without explanation.
Dana: Yeah, right. I mean, talking to a, going from a small town where everyone knows who you are, what your expectations are, but it made me think like,
Courtney: That reminds me of, when we moved up to North Carolina, Florida was kind of like that. All of our family lives in like a, like one mile radius of each other. So whenever anything happened, everybody knew about it. And I remember when we moved to North Carolina, I was thinking, oh, that’s going to be a great change, right? Like, no one’s going to know, like, whenever you’ve like, you know, fucked up or like,
Dana: they still had telephone
Courtney: they did. I know. So once, this is when it all dawned on me that that was not the case. it was Jody that called, aunt Jody called and I can’t remember why she called, but she was calling talk to my mom and blah, blah, blah. And I was like, oh, I’ll get her. Oh, by the way, I heard you’re having a bad period this week. Like, how’s it going? And I was like, I swear to God, I am like 600 miles away. How do you know about my period? I’m never going to escape it.
Dana: Yeah, that is so accurate.
Courtney: It’s so accurate. And I was like, Fine,
Dana: you know, the personal information my grandmother and aunt knew were insane.
Courtney: I know. Absolutely so ridiculous. So I was thinking about when she was talking about that, I was thinking about like that kind of dynamic. Like it, must’ve just been like this amazing ability to be who you’re going to be without any reference to who you were. And like that obscurity must be so frank. I can’t say that I’ve ever like 100% experience that. I felt it the probably the most in college, going to college.
Dana: Yeah. I feel like I could, cause I like, I remember when I was in elementary school and I was just going, Florida was kindergarten through sixth grade. And I had some friends in sixth grade. I never really felt like I fit in there, and they were kind of like the weird people too. But like, I just, I never really wanted to be in that group. They just didn’t feel like my people, but I really didn’t have anybody else that I connected with. And then I was homeschooled in seventh grade because according to my mother, I was becoming a problem child.
And then in eighth grade we went back to school and I remember, I was like, okay, I’m going to go to junior high and I’m going to make new friends, like I’m not going to fall into that same group of friends and sure enough fall, it fell into the same group of friends because I was nervous.
I was like, oh, you’re in the cafeteria, holding your lunch tray. And there’s nobody else to sit with your guests or the person that tells you to come over and sit with you. And moving to North Carolina, I felt like I, again, I could like reinvent myself in a way, and I did, I, like, I was as Florida girl, like I had this definitely definitely this persona and kind of try to figure out who I was, but I still just never felt like I fit in anywhere.
Like I never felt like, I don’t know. Like I felt like I was always chasing after something. And a lot of it, I think was me being afraid of being left out. I didn’t want to be popular, but I didn’t want to be obscure. You know? I was really afraid of popular people because I was really afraid of like peer pressure, cause
Courtney: I couldn’t even tell you who the popular people were in school.
Dana: Yeah. Well, because I was like, I was like, I was like in the middle, yeah. You know, so like I had friends that were popular acquaintances. I had friends that were not, and like just this weird, like, like you just, you were just on an island, it felt like, and then college.
If I went to high school with you, I didn’t talk to you in college. Cause I was like, I am not going back. Like I am, I’m going to be my own person. And I really was my own person. I really became who I wanted to be in college. And I had great friends in college and they were all over the whole spectrum of people and,
Courtney: of popularity and weirdness.
Dana: Yeah, I guess so. I felt like that was a, I think I felt very, very, very free in college, very free of who I wanted to be very free of all the responsibility. I just free.
Courtney: Yeah. Because we had a lot of responsibility growing up.
Dana: Yeah. Yeah. Well, I did, a lot, that last year and a half, I had a ton of responsibility, like that was mom’s care was on me, so yeah, that was really hard.
Courtney: Yeah. But I remember I felt very free and I remember you felt very abandoned.
Dana: Yeah. It was the time because I was left alone with my mom who was sick all the time. Yeah. I mean, I would wake up.
Courtney: We didn’t talk a lot, a whole lot during that year and a half,
Dana: but I remember when mom came home from the hospital finally, after being in hospital for like forever, like six or seven months, I had to wake up every three and a half hours to give her medicine. Yeah, every three and a half hours.
Yeah, because dad was in Florida chasing a dream, and only com only came up like every other week or something. Yeah. He would come home and try to parent me. And I was just like, you can’t parent me anymore. Like, you’re not here enough, buddy. You’re not here. I’m sorry. You have no say like, you want to be a dad than be here. It was kind of mean. Yeah, but it was , 18, 17, you know?
Courtney: Yeah. No, I felt, felt like it was in college. I was one of my hardest, like one of my hardest times in life was right after I got married. Like the year after I got married, decided I wasn’t going to go to medical school, which has always. I don’t know if it was a dream or like, and I think back on an expectation of me, you know, but I was really worried about losing everything that I’d gained by getting married.
Dana: Gained what?
Courtney: Like my independence, my sense of self, like what I called and Mikael calls it, and he said, we had this conversation, I call it my Courtney-ism like, I was so afraid of losing that because I had just found it, you know?
And I think I was accurate to be afraid about that, honestly, but it was definitely like during that time in college that I felt like a real sense of like redefining without the expectation, without the responsibility. Cause I grew up with a lot of responsibility, like I was really a lot younger in college than I was at, like say 15, you know, and my ability to just go and be and do so.
Dana: I think that’s a thing that always, and I say this to Ada all the time. Not to Henry cause Henry doesn’t actually talk to me at all about getting married. well he’s like, you know, 10. I know, but I I’m, I mean, eight isn’t talking to me about it since she was like seven, she was convinced she was gonna marry Mason.
And then she realized she couldn’t marry Mason because he was a first cousin that was very devastating. Which now she’s like, don’t say that. Sorry, Ada. But no, I, I always tell her, like, you should just wait and I, and Sam’s like, and I always preface it. Like I do not regret marrying your father young.
We had, we have a wonderful marriage. We had a wonderful, we still had a great marriage when we started. We still have one now, but there is something about being yourself for a while that allows you to have the confidence to weather marriage better.
Courtney: Yeah, and I think even like, especially as a woman. Like, especially, cause I think that really gets into her talking about how women tend to define themselves more as their failures and their successes. There’s, I’m not, I’ve never been a man, so I can’t really speak to it, but it’s hard being a woman and a mother and a business owner and all of these things.
Like there’s like a different set of expectations of other people’s expectations that dictate your course of action. And like the longer that you can prolong that I think the better off you’ll be, because you’ll be able to hold your own.
Dana: No, I think that’s why I like relate to Taylor Swift so much.
Courtney: Cause she’s 30 and not married.
Dana: No, no, no, no. Not at all because I think, I think she rails again. She’s constantly said, it’s like, if I was a dude, you would’ve asked me this question. If I was a dude, you wouldn’t be questioning like why, how many people I date, like, and there’s just such this double standard in the world in general.
But yeah, getting back to Inez. I have to say, like, I think we can kind of segue into her story about the publisher and how his words like, just like broke her down.
Courtney: She said basically let someone else’s opinion, not basically, the gist that they got from that was not to let someone else’s opinion stall your progress and like how much power someone else’s words have over your,
Dana: Doesn’t that suck?
Courtney: That does suck, especially when you, when you’re talking to someone who you perceive as an expert in a field that you’re not an expert in, right. How much that really, really sucks.
Dana: Yeah. No, I thought I, I really resonated with that and I was trying to think I was like, was there a moment in my life when someone spoke into it and it kind of broke me a little bit?
I don’t know. I don’t think, I don’t think professionally. I feel like I’ve always been a bit of an overachiever and that, like I was, I was actually, I mean, I know this, I was a good teacher when I taught, I put a lot of energy and effort into my lesson plans and I cared a lot about what my students thought like, and there came a point when I stopped caring what my VP or my AP thought, because I thought she was a terrible human.
But until I reached that reality, I really did care. And I knew that when it was time to go and I left is because I stopped caring what they said to me. Like I stopped caring about their opinion. So obviously, like I didn’t respect them enough, but hearing it from someone you respect, I think, I think it was really hard.
And I don’t know if it had like a certain instance, like I don’t have like a moment in time where someone said this thing and it like broke my spirit, but I think kind of going back to being a parent, like I think that first year of Ada’s life. It. I mean, it, it like destroyed me. Like it broke me as a parent because I was constantly told that I was overreacting or I was too scheduled or whatever.
And it goes back to the point where like I knew her enough. And even to this day, this is Ada. Like she just loves a routine. She loves it. She thrived on it. She was such a happy baby. And so when I would go, and we would spend time at like Sam’s parent’s house and I’d be like, Hey, like we have to have dinner at five.
I know it sounds like we’re on a geriatric schedule, but it’s what we do. We eat dinner together. It’s really important to us. And you know, ADA like eats at five or five to 5:45. She takes a bath, like we have a read time she’s in the crib by seven. Yeah, and she’s out. And she doesn’t necessarily sleep all night, but she’ll sleep til midnight get fed and then she’ll sleep till five. Like that works for our family, you know, that’s a healthy baby, whatever, and they just never respected it. Like never cared. It was just okay. Yeah, that sounds fine. Then we’d be there and dinner won’t be till seven. So then you had a screaming baby for three days.
Granted we should have fed her and put her down, yes. Like that’s just what we should have done, but,
Courtney: should have just had like other dinner, right.
Dana: Right. But it just was like a, afraid to rock the boat type thing or whatever.
Dana: Now whenever I have any, anybody that is a parent or a mother, I will never offer unsolicited advice. Never, ever. I could, I could think all these things. Like I could, I could think that you’re doing all of it wrong.
Courtney: It depends on how invested I am, like if I felt like if I felt like something was going on with ADA and you need to know or needed advice, I would give you advice because I’m invested in Ada’s life.
Dana: Certainly. I mean, let’s, let’s take family, let’s take the super, super close friends of it. But even, even some of my best friends who have had babies and, you know, unless they specifically asked me a question and, and, and to be fair, I don’t know.
They’re, I don’t know that kid enough to be able to. I will never, I will never offer. If they asked me I will, I will offer an offer at gently, but like, it, it really made me understand like how much is we define ourselves as moms, right? How much, again, going back to that success and failure thing, like we can only see where we have failed with our children.
We can’t see how we’ve been successful with our children and, and how hard it is to hear someone say, I think you’re doing this wrong. Whether they are right, it doesn’t really matter because at the end of the day, it is your baby. It is your child. It is your experience and it is your gut reaction to whatever’s happening.
And I will never tell a mom that you’re doing something wrong. Unless they’re like, obviously harming their child. Right. But, and I’ve always given from that moment on people, a lot of grace in that, because I remember how it felt.
Courtney: I feel that way though. Sometimes too, like we aren’t the most like structured of parents or family in general, but I’ve good kids. Like they’re kind kids, they’re loving kids. They’re fairly respectful kids, you know? And sometimes it just strikes me how much love is like in our family. I mean, even when Mason who’s 13 and like playing football, like he always acknowledges us in the stand. We yell Mason. He turns around, he waves. He sees me, he has to give me a hug.
Whereas the rest, most of the team, like won’t even acknowledge that their parents are like speaking to them, you know, or whatever. And I just think like how much, like love that we have in our family. And even though it doesn’t look, what I would consider, like how I was raised, right. And like a very strict, like conventional environment that doesn’t make it.
It doesn’t mean that it’s good or it’s bad. There’s no like judgment on it, but it’s more about like, what are you producing in this environment, right? Like what kind of child are you producing? Like what kind of adult are you producing? Like what’s coming from this, and it struck me that the other, like, I feel the most anxious when I feel like people.
Not when I’m just operating in my house, but when people, outsiders are coming to my house and like maybe passing judgment or like, oh, they shouldn’t do this. Or they shouldn’t like, for example, the other day, Liam was playing a card game and he was racing, racing, racing. And he was like, shit, I guess someone passed him.
I was in the bedroom. He was in the family room, and Mason was like in the middle. He’s like, aren’t you gonna go say something to him? And I was like, no, I don’t care if you’re sitting by yourself and you’re playing a racing game and you say, shit, fuck damn, whatever. Like you’re by yourself. He’s not saying it to somebody, he’s not being disrespectful.
Like I don’t control your thoughts. And I don’t want a controlling environment. He’s like, oh. And I was like, yeah, like it’s very different than when you’re like speaking to somebody else or calling somebody a name than when you’re sitting in your room by yourself and you say a cuss word. Yeah. I have every expectation Mason that you do the exact same thing.
And maybe I just haven’t heard it, right. But then I’m like, when, like, say like my parents were there who were like super conservative or like whatever. And like, what if Liam’s racing in his game and someone passes him and he says, oh shit, right. Cause that’s like his inclination or whatever. Then I like start thinking like, oh my God, what do they think about me as a parent?
Not, am I worried, what does this, what kind of child is produced? Am I making successful people or whatever? I’m making independent thinkers and whatnot. And you just have got to get away from other people’s opinion and just be somewhat confident in how you’re raising them, and how it feels at the time, does it feel good to you? Is it a loving environment? Like, are they moving forward? Yes, yes, yes, yes, yes. And then all that other shit. It doesn’t matter.
Dana: I know, but there’s something so like, I don’t know. It’s heartwarming in a way, and it sounds terrible to hear your kids swear, but like we were sitting in the family room and the kids were doing the dishes and Henry’s trying to wash this pan and it falls and he goes shit and Ada is like, it’s okay.
I’ll help you. Like, just breezed right over it. Like, it’s like a normal conversation. And as we had had the conversations with the kids, like, we really don’t mind. It’s just like when you’re around Nani and pop-pop, they find that to be very disrespectful. Like Nina does not like people to swear, especially the F word around her.
You can say damn all day long, but maybe not from a kid, but like, yeah, like there are moments and instances where it is okay and where it is not okay, and you have to know that be mature enough, and if you’re not, if you can’t pick and choose those times, just don’t send, just, don’t say it, right. Like that’s the reality of it.
But yeah, I know, but it’s something we just, me and Sam just laughed at it because it was such a funny scene. Like I don’t know if its good or bad parents. I don’t know.
Courtney: I don’t know if it’s good or bad parenting. I really don’t know, but at the same time, I also don’t, I’m not a micromanager. Like I don’t want to control it.
Dana: They hear it so much. To hear it in movies, they hear it in TV, it’s so much more prevalent. They hear it in music, that you can’t avoid it. No, you can’t avoid it. Yeah. So why I want to teach them how to use it respectably around them, but all right.
Yeah. So I also really loved her statement about when she was talking about how her business is not defined her. Like she would be the same person if she was a teacher, preschool teacher or, you know,
Courtney: She was basically saying like, there is freedom and being, and I have, and I have often felt this, like, there’s freedom just to like 90 degree it right. Like be able to change, be able to change, like, yes, I’ve owned this business.
Yes, I’ve done these things. But if I wanted to go and be a preschool teacher, that should be fine with you too. Like, it doesnt define me as a successful human, because I have a successful business. It’s basically kind of how I interpreted what she was saying. Yeah, and there was definitely times where, like, for me personally, when like life was going for shit, that the business was what I wanted to define me because that’s what I felt like was going well, you know, but there’s definitely times too where like the business was going for shit and I didn’t want that to define me, you know what I mean?
Right, so I think that, I just think she was kind of speaking to like the freedom to be able to like pick up and change direction and still be that same person in that new role.
Dana: Right, but don’t you feel like, and I feel like, wait, this is where our art, like our particular situation is really hard because I think that so much of who we are so much of our persona and our business and our story is always wrapped up in to the other person. It’s more like people, like when I think about people industry, like I brought in a sister. Yeah. So I think I brought Sam to that Memorial a few weeks ago, cause I like emotionally needed him there.
And, and it was the first time a lot of people had met Sam, had actually met him, this person, this husband that I talked about and they see on Instagram and it blew my mind and it blew my mind that like, when I’m with him and I’m in like that setting, I am me like I can I, not that I’m not me with him, but I mean, like, he saw a different part of me.
He’s like, when you’re, he’s like, you’re like a, like a business person, like you’re like on. And I’m like, well, yeah. That’s why I’m so exhausted sometimes when I come home, cause I’m always on. And like how my relationship with Sam had nothing to do with my relationship with anybody else. Yeah, you know what I mean?
Like it didn’t, it didn’t define who I was that I was Sam’s wife, right right. If anything, at that point, Sam was my husband, right right. Where I feel like there’s such a huge part of our life, where I am not Dana, I am Dana and Courtney. And so much of who I am is defined through the two of us.
Courtney: I joke about that all the time, because people are like, are you Courtney? Dana’s sister? And I’m like, good thing my mom gave me that middle name. She knew Dana was coming. I’m like, yes, I’m Courtney, Dana’s sister,
Dana: But isn’t it. I, but I, but I do think that like, and I don’t, I don’t, I don’t want it to come across, I don’t begrudge it sometimes I do. And I’ve said to you on an occasion or two, that I’m feeling, I feel very suffocated sometimes.
That I can’t like be who I want to be, or like, not that I can’t be, I want to be, but I can never just be me. Like I’m always connected and attached, and it feels like I’m sure it’s how twins. Like probably feels like this, I’m sure. Yeah, like that, there’s just no other like, like you’re always just.
One half of a, one half of a person. Yeah yeah, so I feel like that likes, I feel like is, I don’t know if my business defines me, but my sister defines me.
Courtney: That’s a shame.
Dana: I wasn’t saying it’s a shame. I’m just saying it’s the truth.
Courtney: No, I feel that way. I mean, I, I mean, I always, I always feel like it’s like, are you you’re Courtney, Dana’s sister.
Yeah. Dana sister, but it just like one of the reasons I was so happy for you to be like NACE president. Like, I felt like it was like a totally Dana thing. I don’t have any aspirations to be NACE president. Like, it looks like a whole lot of work that I don’t have time to devote to, right. And, I totally got that.
I mean, I feel defined by that, often. But, I mean, I don’t necessarily see it as like a negative thing all the time. I think there’s always like the tension. There’s always a tension of being a sister. I think anytime you’re a sister, there’s are some level of competition.
There’s some low level of competition, even though we’re both striving towards the same goal. There’s always like, she looks prettier than me today, or like, I didn’t know. We were supposed to step it up in the makeup environment. Like I didn’t get the memo. Now she has a better hair skills than me and we use test similar hair skills.
Dana: I’m trying to bring you over to the dark side.
Courtney: Yeah, I know. I just, like, I just could give two shits. Yeah, it’s like what it is. And I wish I really wish I could. I wish for everyone’s sake that I could, but I just cannot. I mean, I’ve tried to give you, bring you over to the dark side of my Yogi way.
It’s true. I’m like why we would just be so much more peaceful and better and kumbaya. You could just do some downward dog with me, like. You know, so I definitely think like we have like our own, but there’s also, I think it’s more work trying to carve out your individuality when you’re always a duo.
It’s so much more, so you’re always trying to be like, that was Dana, but like, this is me, right? Like, this is, this is, this is my realm. And there’s definitely like a Venn diagram, like more overlaps than doesn’t, but still there is some like individuality that you’re always trying to prove. And I just think that that is like the beauty, and sometimes also like the pain of it all.
Dana: Yeah. I will agree with all that, yeah.
Courtney: But I mean, it’s like who we’ve been like most of our life. It just happens to be wrapped up in our business, but I think it’s more just like our relationship that comes through in our business than our business coming through in our relationship. Do you know what I mean?
Dana: Yeah. Well, I mean the relationship, obviously, not that we were sisters before, but like the closest relationship was there before the business even started.
Courtney: Oh yeah. Yeah. Like we had the option of like sharing a room or not sharing a room and we shared a room. Right. Like we shared closets, like we shared everything, you know, like it was all of it. Yeah. It was just, wasn’t an option. So like, which gave us a great foundation for like a lot of bullshit that was to come for sure. But yeah, I definitely think. I think that the business has just is somewhat defining because it’s so wrapped into our relationship that it does feel very defining, right.
Dana: I don’t know. I thought that was a, it was a great interview. I think it was a lot to, I think the, I think the biggest takeaway for me was just, and I said this on the podcast, her journey was long and so meaningful, like when I think, I mean, you just think about not even that, like, oh, I could have been there. I could have been at the world trade center that day, but just the amount of loss.
Courtney: Yeah. It seemed like it’s very profound, and that was like one of the things, it just like kind of ending on that. I’ve thought about this, like in my own relationships, not that I really experienced a lot of death. Like we had an aunt that died. My husband and I, his best man died like a couple of years after our wedding. and like dealing with that grief and processing, like the finality of that, but something that’s come up just in like my relationship and my relationship with you and my relationship with Mikael, my relationship with myself is like grieving as just a part of life.
Like you have to allow that space to like process and to grieve and to get to the other side, because there’s always going to be things that you’re grieving in life. Not necessarily just the finality of like losing a person, but it could be a business. It could be yourself. It could be an idea. It could be, you know, a relationship.
Right, and I think that I love how she was talking about the, like when you’re in that grieving process and whatever’s like putting you there to be good to yourself and. Don’t expect yourself to produce something great during that time, like take that time to process, take that time to grieve, take that time to like, do that journey work.
cause it doesn’t have to be the end, right. And I love that. And that’s one of the things in my journal that I’ve I’ve often written about is just like grieving as a life cycle and how we are so afraid of it and we avoid it and it just feels. Hard and impossible, but yet you grieve things all the time.
Dana: Yeah, it was, it runs me a lot of, we just did Beau’s last Memorial on Wednesday and his brother gave a talk and I actually.
Courtney: And Beau is a caterer like in our industry. Yeah, he passed out, passed away, like unexpected, like really tragically.
Dana: And he was a really, really dear friend of ours and we helped the family with the Memorial and some other wedding industry people did as well and and I started falling Rain, his brother, and he had posted this prior to it, and then he mentioned it in his speech, but he said that grief is the price of love.
Courtney: Grief is the price you pay to love.
Dana: And it was really, really, really profound to me. Cause I feel like for a long time, not that I think grief is weakness, but I think a lot of times you feel like, oh, I should be, I should be fine. I should be over this or I should be okay. Or I shouldn’t be heartbroken over this or, and you can, you can like rationalize anything you wanna rationalize about it. You can say, like, especially if someone has a long fought battle, like they’re in a better place or whatever, like all that bullshit that people tell you and someone passes and oh, it’s God’s plan or whatever stupid BS.
And he said, would you ever, and he said, would you trade it? Would you trade the love? Would you trade the memories? Would you trade the years? And no one, no one would ever say yes, I would trade it because I want to feel this way, you know? But it also gave a lot of freedom to understand that like grief, isn’t a weakness.
It’s just, it’s an immense amount of strength like, cause it’s came from a place of where you let go enough to let somebody impact you and you let go enough to love somebody enough to have this be so painful. And I think what you’re saying is the life cycle. Like, even as you, like, I grieved being a teacher because I loved that job.
Like I grieved when I got married cause I loved being in college. Like, you know what I mean? Like it’s, and I wouldn’t trade any of those experiences for any part of my life to feel how shitty I felt for however long I felt, right. Yeah, and it’s the same thing. Like you’re gonna grieve, I’m gonna cry and grieve when my kid goes to college. I’m not going to like trade that 18 years, cause I don’t want to feel shitty
Courtney: maybe like the year three and maybe the year nine. I don’t know.
Dana: But like it’s, I, I just thought that was like such a profound way to look at it and to, and to center you back to it. Like when you are feeling those things, you’re going through it and not to sound like fluffy and like, oh, it’s all worth it.
I’m fine now because I love these people, but it. It’s just more centering. Yeah. Like why you’re grieving, like your grief is real and it’s valid and you need the time you need to treat yourself. Well, you need to give yourself this space because you had a lot of love that’s just gone, gone. Yeah.
Courtney: And I think that like, normalizing that, I think normalizing that, that as an aspect of life is so crucial because you can grieve. You can move aspects of yourself. Like you can read aspects of a relationship. You can grieve aspects of your business. You can grieve, like you said, children going off to college. It doesn’t even have to be final. It can just be grieving these stages of your life, but it’s a process. And I think to her point, like not having this unrealistic expectation of what you’re going to produce in the middle of that grief and being really kind to yourself and letting the process play itself out.
So important to being like a whole and successful person, which obviously she is, you know, like taking the grieving and, you know, she’s opened up a couple of businesses. She’s written this memoir, like, and processed it further to help other people with their journeys as well on that. I think that that’s so amazing.
And that’s the power of being able to like walk through like that grief and get to the other side of it.
Dana: Thanks everyone for gathering this a day to talk about the hustle. For our episode with Inez, we are drinking Tarboro Brewing Company’s new Home for the Holiday spiced ale. You can get yourself with the link in our show notes. We hope you’ll get the chance to drink it this week and cheers to processing grief.
To learn more about Inez Ribustello and her business, visit tarborobrewingcompany.com, onthesquarenc.com or follow on Instagram at tarborobrewingcompany at onthesquaretarboro, or follow her personal at inezribustello. You can purchase and read more about Inez’s his book, Life after Windows at the list of retailers in our show notes.
Courtney: And to learn more about our hustles visit canddevents.com anthemhouse.com. thebradfordnc.com and hustleandgather.com or follow us on Instagram @ canddevents, at anthem.house at thebradfordnc, or at hustleandgather. And if you liked the show, be sure to subscribe and leave us a rating and review. This
Dana: This podcast is a production of Earfluence. I’m Dana
Courtney: and I’m Courtney.
Dana: And we’ll talk to you next time on Hustle and Gather.
Hustle and Gather is hosted by Courtney Hopper and Dana Kadwell, and is produced by Earfluence. Courtney and Dana’s hustles include C&D Events, Hustle and Gather, and The Bradford Wedding Venue.