Today is my birthday. I remember turning 20 like it was yesterday. I remember turning 30 like it was an hour ago. I finally understand what it means to live in the now, live with passion and gratitude, and appreciate the journey (the perceived good and bad). I am at Mile Marker 38 and what a humbling journey it has been.
In the first 37 years of my life, I:
- became a mother;
- married a man named Brian Theophilus James;
- traveled to foreign lands;
- beat up a girl twice my size in both junior high school and high school (different girls);
- was almost expelled from college;
- became a lawyer;
- grew dreadlocks;
- cut off all my hair;
- lost my father;
- invested in commercial real estate;
- became a homeowner;
- fell out with my childhood best friend;
- learned to meditate;
- became a neighbor that waves at other neighbors;
- enjoyed volunteering my time and being a part of Miami’s cultural transformation;
- gave into being an entrepreneur;
- decided I was in fact an artist too;
- was nominated by my peers as the Social Event Planner of the Year in Florida (vote vote vote!);
- was blessed with an incredible mentor;
- mentored a few remarkable young women; and
- became a mother who sits on the sidelines screaming things, like “Roar Lioness Roar!”
Me and my beautiful Mom who share the same birthday.
I stand on the shoulders of some pretty special individuals. My paternal grandmother did not know how to read or write. She nonetheless managed to send my father to medical school in Argentina by running the equivalent of a pawn shop then later acquiring a lot of land. My mother, whose family was well regarded in Haiti, and my father, both worked long hours to make sure we had the best of the American Dream.
My aunt and grandmother in Haiti.
My Papa in medical school in Cordoba, Argentina.
My grandmother often said, ‘Si ou mande, wa rive Rome.’” In Creole it means if you ask, you can get all the way to Rome – i.e, if you have the courage to seek, you will find; the thirst to learn, you will be quenched, solutions solved, dreams realized.
Me in Rome.
The flame of that adventurous spirit was lit in me at a young age. Today I bring the passion of a globally-inspired perspective to cultivate “Luxe Fêtes” that guests relish long after the event has ended. In life and in my designs, I seek to focus on what really matters. I am on a mission to make the experience of life richer and more meaningful through my work as a designer, planner, wife, mother, philanthropist and global citizen. I am thankful for my amazing clients, now dear friends who have been a part of this journey. I’ll be driving through 38 one day at a time, with my rock, Brian, by my side. Take heed – get out the way.