Resilience Gives is Closing
After five years in business, we are beginning the process of closing our doors. All remaining inventory is available at 70% off and we are organizing our final sock donations to partner hospitals. This will be the last opportunity to purchase or donate socks through Resilience Gives.
Since working with a 14-year-old non-hodgkin’s patient named Samaury on our first pair of socks in 2016 to releasing our 121st style this fall, each design has shared a story of resilience from families experiencing the ebb and flow of their cancer journeys. And although no single pair of socks altered the course of a child’s disease, collectively, they made a difference. Whether it was raising $150K for pediatric cancer research, donating 12K pairs of socks to children in hospitals across America, or serving as a tangible representation to remind families that they weren’t alone in their fight, I’m proud of what we’ve accomplished and am tremendously grateful to you, our community, for making it possible.
And yet, I’m also deeply disappointed in the outcome. I started Resilience Gives as a direct result of my own cancer experience and worked to create an organization that would improve patient lives and thrive as a mission-driven business. For five years, I cinched the knot between the business and my identity. Intricately and deliberately, I tied the growth of the business with my transition from cancer patient to successful entrepreneur and took pride in being someone who turned pain into purpose.
But now, whether I define success as the number of families we’ve worked with, the difference we made in their lives, or by the revenue of socks sold, the reality is that we failed. I failed. I believed that by giving families a creative outlet and building community around this idea of resilience, we could make a difference in families’ cancer journeys while fueling a sustainable business. But as we close the books on our fifth year and take a hard look in the mirror, it’s clear we’ve come up short of our own expectations. It’s time to acknowledge failure. Sitting deep inside the lower third of my stomach lives a pit of disappointment threatening to swallow my lungs in its depths.
Admitting failure as the CEO of a small business feels like confessing to a cardinal sin. The entrepreneurial narrative is one of persevering against all odds, and when your business literally has the word “resilience” in the name, quitting is surely an act of heresy. For five years, I poured all of my energy into this single entity; Resilience Gives is my body of work, and its failure was a product of my ineptitude as a business owner, or so I told myself. And yet, in occupying this uneasiness and owning my failure, I gradually have begun to acknowledge an important truth. Failure, itself, is not absolute.
Just like emotions come and go, personal failure, too, is transient and relative. As a 27-year-old entrepreneur, I can label myself a failure and understand that the label is written in erasable marker rather than etched in stone. Furthermore, although five years of work may have culminated in failure, it doesn’t diminish the successes or joy found along the way. Life, after all, is all about the journey.
To all of you who have made socks, purchased socks, shared your personal experiences, or simply appreciated the stories, thank you for making the journey possible.