…For the Better

Photo courtesy of Elizabeth Messina
Photo courtesy of Elizabeth Messina

As with any story, there are numerous chapters. As I’ve mentioned, I launched Delysia Chocolatier while working as an engineer at a tech company in Austin. Only six months after the launch, when I was five months pregnant with my second child, Colin, I was laid off.

I often think back to that day as if it were yesterday. I was devastated. I was shocked. I was speechless. I felt betrayed and disposable. I loved my job. I defined myself by that job. And, I was 5 months pregnant – what was I to do now!?!

I remember my husband telling me, as we drove home on that Wednesday afternoon, that I was going to be just fine – that I was “going to wake up tomorrow morning and grow your business.” And you know, he was right. I focused the next 18 months, while looking for a job, on growing Delysia Chocolatier into what it is today.

Those emotions that I felt on that day in April 2009 will always be with me. The challenging and difficult months that followed have shaped who I am today. It’s that drive and dedication to grow my own business that got me out of bed every day – and keeps me going today.

‘Things always work out for the better’ was a phase I constantly heard after I was laid off. I hated that statement. I knew everyone meant well and they were simply trying to cheer me up. But looking back, it’s funny how life had determined a different path for me. If I hadn’t been laid off, I’d probably still be working for an ungrateful boss at a dead end job. And, Delysia Chocolatier would still be this small little business that no one heard of.

Things did work out for the better – for everyone!

Nicole Patel

Nicole Patel is the proprietor of and chocolatier for Delysia Chocolatier. In 2006 while pregnant with her first son, Nicole made a batch of chocolate truffles as holiday gifts. To the delight of friends and family, she continued to create chocolates as a way to relieve stress from her corporate engineering job. In 2008, a chance trip to Becker Vineyards led to Nicole being the first in Texas to make truffles using local wines. Within five years, what started as a hobby turned Delysia into one of the Top Ten Chocolatiers in the Americas, as selected by the International Chocolate Salon.