To share why I write The Plumbette, I have to go back 10 years ago.
You see, 10 years ago I took a risk and decided to become a plumber to take over our family plumbing company. If I never took that risk, I would never have started writing a plumbing blog.
It was 2006 and I was 22 years old. I was a newlywed – Jacob and I had only been married for a year.
At the time I was working full time as a marketing assistant for a transport company and I had been thinking how I’d combine work with starting a family.
Not that Jacob and I were ready to be parents, but being a planner, I knew we wanted to have kids, I just wasn’t sure how it would work out with my current work situation.
I knew I didn’t want to stay in transport, and there were no positions for me to climb up the ladder, so I got a job as a sales executive at another courier company. I was there for six weeks, but I wasn’t happy. I knew I wanted to own my own business, but I wasn’t sure what my new business would be.
I talked to my dad about my desire to have my own business, with the main focus of it being flexible so that I could have children and be the stay at home mum I wanted to be. I knew if I had my own business, I could work my own hours around my future family.
I tossed around different business ideas like pet sitting. Dad suggested we go to a franchise exhibition to see what businesses were out there that I could do.
A couple of days after having that conversation, my dad came back to me with a business idea. It ended up being a business proposal.
My dad asked if I would want to learn about our family plumbing business and take it over when he’d retire. He had always wanted someone in the family to take over our business, he just never considered me to be the one to do it. I remember dad telling me I’d inherit a business that was not only established but making good money, which as many know, can be years to achieve when you start a new business.
The following week, I resigned from my new job, to the shock of my manager who couldn’t believe I’d be leaving after signing up many new businesses the previous week. Once I explained the opportunity, he could see it was something that I was keen to do.
When I started working with dad, he showed me how to run the business. There was a lot to learn.
After a few months, dad and I realized I would need to do a plumbing apprenticeship to understand plumbing better and if I were to take over the business, I would require a plumbing license.
So I started my plumbing apprenticeship and those four years were difficult for me because I was really in a man’s world and the practical side of plumbing didn’t come natural to me. But I had to remember I was there to learn and get my license.
There were so many times I wanted to quit, but I’d remind myself that I had to keep going and couldn’t give up.
In those times when I wanted to give up, I would head to Google to find inspiration on another female plumber who had successfully finished their apprenticeship. But I couldn’t find any inspiration.
I persevered through my apprenticeship, whle the world was hit by the Global Financial Crisis. I finished my apprenticeship, won awards – including the Dux Australian Plumbing Apprentice of the Year for 2009 and then I fell pregnant with Esther.
It wasn’t until after I had Esther, dad and I adjusted our working week to suit our new family situation.
One afternoon in September 2011, I told dad I wanted to start writing a plumbing blog and I was going to call it The Plumbette – the marketing name I had penned up for our radio advertising in 2009. He loved the idea and told me to immediately get it started!
Domain names were bought, a logo was designed and my website was created.
I started writing The Plumbette.
Essentially the blog was to offer inspiration to other female tradies. I knew I could also use the blog to build a readership so I would have a market for my book on how I became a plumber. The third reason was to be the communication and reassurance between a client and a plumber. I wanted my blog to explain why plumbers did what they did and to tell the general public what they should and shouldn’t do when it came to plumbing in their own home.
That book is still in drafts, but the blog posts are not. I share each week experiences being a plumber, mother and woman of faith. And interwoven through these posts are plumbing tips and home maintenance suggestions.
The blog has brought me into contact with amazing women who inspire me with their stories of resilience – whether they are tradies, mums or whatever chosen course they have taken that is not the norm. And despite the changes in my life over the past three years due to unexpected curve balls, the community has grown as has The Plumbette’s influence.
I never dreamed that becoming a plumber would have brought me to writing a plumbing blog, but I’m grateful that I have been able to use my knowledge and experiences to inspire other future tradies.
I’ve put together this slideshow which details why I write The Plumbette. It also includes some lovely comments from readers who encourage me when I’ve shared my struggles.
Thank you to all of you for reading my blog. I love the comments, messages and likes that come through on all my social media channels.
I’m often amazed at where my trade career has taken me. My story is just one of many women who have decided to give a trade a go. I also know there will be women who will do greater things than what I have achieved in my 10 years of being in the plumbing industry.
So the reason I write The Plumbette is for you. To encourage you on whatever path you walk. To be real and honest and yet offer hope when reality sucks the joy out of you.
And I get my inspiration to write my blog from you – your comments, your prayers and your messages. Thank you for joining me on this crazy journey of being a plumbing blogger.
Why do you read The Plumbette? Do you write a blog? Why do you write?
Disclosure: This post is an entry in a competition sponsored by ProBlogger, Shoebox Timeline and The Good Guys for ProBlogger Event. All images and wording are my own unless disclosed in the slideshow. To see why other bloggers write, why not head to Twitter and follow the hashtag #PBEVENT to see all the other amazing entries.