It has been a transformation at so many levels being accepted into the Summer 2016 Accelerator program at EforAll.org. I had never “pitched” my business before. Nique-Wear and Breast Cancer & Nique, Inc evolved on a journey of healing. There was no business plan, no customer segments, no projected revenue proposals. It was established on a second diagnosis of breast cancer. Just like Nique-Wear, my cancer had no significant platform either. In the eyes of my oncology team at Dana Faber in Boston, Ma I was only determined to have a 4% chance of the big “C” lurking it’s deadly cells into my body again. Nique-Wear was a survival technique that helped me help others. Through blogging my second battle on a Facebook page that started as “Breast Cancer & Me”, Nique-Wear evolved. I spoke of my journey as a nurse, a Marine, a daughter, a mother, a sister. Through this exercise of optimistic bliss I met some incredible people who reached out to me and connected me with so many others who where excited to learn more about my journey. Some who are no longer here with us today. Just like my cancer wasn’t supposed to return, I had no vision of where “Breast Cancer & Me” was going to go.
I started a Cancer & Fitness Inspired apparel line with the financial support and direction of the I.C.E. Agency in Rhode Island. Owned as a partnership, one of the owners had been a cancer survivor. Like nature’s changing season’s, the Agency changed direction. One of the partners branched out on his own and took Nique-Wear with him. It was an amazing opportunity with direction and hope for the future and we had started planning for our first fundraiser. As a healing approach and not understanding the business side of things, I continued to put my heart into this venture. While working full time on the night shift at a local nursing home, I put all my monies and efforts into making this an extravaganza. After the event came to an end, my partner and I discussed the direction of this small company as he shared his concerns of the viability of turning over a profit. I was still stuck on the social cause and impact of Nique-Wear. Not understanding any of this business mentality, we had to part ways. It was an emotional time, as strangers would randomly send a private message on social media trying to sabotage the very purpose of the existence of Nique-Wear. At times the perception and opinions of others weighed heavy on my soul, but I would reflect on the days in the operating room, 24 hours after the Boston Marathon bombing. The medical staff had been working round the clock to save as many victims as they could, and as I lay there on the stretcher waiting for yet another biopsy. I put it all into perspective. Cancer was minimal in comparison to the horrific events that had just occurred, as well as the perception and opinion of others who had no idea who I was.
Why do I share all this with you? So I can share with young entrepreneurs the wealth of opportunity in the program that is known as Entrepreneurs For All. Nique-Wear and Breast Cancer & Nique, Inc has become the placenta to the new entity that this program and my mentors have helped me create. With my advanced practice degree in nursing this program has opened up the window of opportunity for me creating and developing the Cannabis Nurse Navigator. This is not just a nurse navigator position, but it is helping navigate other cancer patients choose treatment options that will include using medial cannabis therapeutics as part of their treatment plan, as I did. The Cannabis Nurse Navigator has become the “rebirth” of Nique-Wear, and for those of you who have ever seen a placenta, or understand what the placenta does, you will agree with me that the end product of the birthing process is just beautiful. First a seed has to be planted with exact timing to create conception. The placenta nourishes that embryo, feeding it nutrients to sustain life. It takes months to grow, and endless, countless hours of painful side effects. In the end, when forced to push as hard as one can, the birth happens. Once you hold that newborn, your life never goes back to what it once was.
Thank you Entrepreneurs for All for giving me another chance at motherhood.
Nique Pichette MSN, RN
Website available soon