Sarah Garrison and
Haley Lewis



Amee Curtis, Founder
The SDF Collective
Synergy Design Firm


EO02: Building Community with Amee Curtis

In this podcast episode, we follow the journey of Amee Curtis, the founder of the SDF Collective, as she shares her inspiring story of resilience, creativity, and community engagement.





Guest Info

Amee Curtis

Founder, The SDF Collective

Rockstar Ability: The ability to listen and translate the needs of my clients into real world solutions. and my ability to apparently work non stop.

Bio: Amee Curtis is a Dr Pepper-fueled, passionate creative who adores assisting others. She built Synergy Design Firm with this in mind. What began as a modest endeavor evolved into something truly remarkable, culminating in the establishment of the SDF Collective—a sprawling 5,000-square-foot community epicenter tailored to the needs of creatives and entrepreneurs alike.



Social Links:

Show Notes

Amee’s journey begins with a background in photography and film production, where she faced the challenges of finding affordable studio space and resources for her creative projects. These challenges ultimately led her to the idea of creating a space that offers a wide range of creative resources for artists, entrepreneurs, and the community.

Amee’s vision for the SDF Collective, a creative hub in downtown Gresham, Oregon, evolved over time. Initially, she focused on building a place that would provide affordable studio space, equipment, and resources for creatives of all kinds. She wanted to eliminate financial barriers that often hindered artists from pursuing their passions.

As Amee’s vision took shape, the SDF Collective transformed into more than just a co-working space; it became a dynamic community resource. The space offers not only studios and equipment but also graphic design, animation, podcasting, makeup, special effects, costuming, augmented reality, and much more. Amee’s commitment to accessibility is evident in her decision to provide equipment like cameras, lights, and computers, ensuring that financial limitations don’t hinder creativity.

What sets the SDF Collective apart is Amee’s dedication to building a vibrant creative community. She believes that the true value of the collective lies in its role as a home for creativity. It’s a place where people can come together, collaborate, and share their talents. Amee’s commitment to nurturing this community extends to introducing a system of creative trainers, mirroring the concept of personal trainers at a gym but tailored to creative needs. This added layer of support enhances the experience for members, ensuring they make the most of the resources available.

Amee’s involvement in the community doesn’t stop at providing resources and training. She actively engages in community initiatives and social causes. The SDF Collective has received recognition for its contributions, winning the Gresham Chamber of Commerce Award for Best Small Business in 2023. Amee’s ability to connect with people and her genuine concern for others’ well-being have earned her a reputation as a force for good in the community.

One of the key community initiatives led by Amee is the annual creators event held around Halloween. This event serves as a fundraiser for arts scholarships, addressing the lack of recognition and financial support for creative endeavors in high schools. The scholarship aims to help individuals of all ages pursue their creative passions, whether it’s graphic design, animation, or any other artistic pursuit. The event itself is a spectacle, with elaborate themes like a New Orleans Bayou and a carnival called “Carn-Evil.” The proceeds from these events go directly to the scholarship fund, supporting budding artists and creators.

Amee’s extraordinary journey is marked by resilience, optimism, and an unwavering commitment to make a positive impact on the world. She attributes her ability to overcome challenges to her father’s wise words: “Nobody cares how much you know until they know how much you care.” Amee’s experiences, including her own health challenges due to rheumatoid arthritis, have taught her the importance of empathy and giving back to the community.

In the face of physical pain and adversity, Amee chooses to focus on what she can give rather than what she can get. Her message is clear: choose kindness, compassion, and a willingness to help others. She believes that the world can change for the better if people put others before themselves and look for opportunities to make a positive impact.

Amee Curtis, with her infectious passion for creativity, community, and philanthropy, continues to be an inspiration. Her story serves as a reminder that even in the face of adversity, individuals can make a profound difference by choosing to care, to share, and to create a better world for all.

Episode Transcript

EP02: Building Community with Amee Curtis

00:00 / 37:37



Okay. Welcome to Align to Amplify. I am Sarah Garrison, and I’m Haley Lewis, and we are here today with our special first guest ever,



Amy Curtis. She is the owner of the Synergy Design firm and the founder of the SDF Collective, where we all met, where Sarah and I do our co -working, 00:26 our hub, power working, and all of our masterminds and classes, and the podcast recording room right here. We’re in the SDF Collective. And so we knew that Amy needed to be our very first guest because she’s the one that kind of planted the seed when we did the tour of the collective.



She’s like, now there’s a recording room and you can do a podcast. And we’re like, oh, Sarah, we can do a podcast. That’s where it all began. And of course, you’re like, yeah.



And then I’m like, how do you do a podcast? We still don’t know how to do a podcast. No, but we’re getting there. Yeah. Everything is baby steps. Yeah. Amy gets to see our janky duct tape and WD-40 set up. Oh, you know what?



When I do photography, it is scotch tape all the way. Well, okay, so you have to get creative. Absolutely. Obviously, you know, so Amy has a background very similar to mine in the creative industry.



Do you want to talk a little bit about how you got started and how you landed in the crazy creative field? Oh my gosh. Yeah, talk about a circuitous route. So I come from a very creative family.



My father is a set designer. My mom can pretty much do anything. My sister was just a fantastic artist. And so the art has has always been there. So as you grow up, 01:49 you’re always looking for ways to express that art. I got into theater, got into television. I was on a TV show when I was in high school. One day, 02:00 I was super annoyed by one of my co -stars. Which happens very often. Yeah. So I asked the producer that day if I could leave the green room and maybe follow him around.



And I think honestly, she was driving him a little batty that day too because he was like sure kid come on and that sure kid come on literally changed my life I walked out of that studio that day and was like this is what I’m gonna do with my life I just I knew it so jump forward a couple of years I’m in college I went to television and production school focused on producing graduated there and spent a few years



doing music videos in the Portland area super fun loved every minute of it like independent band music videos like yeah like artists that wanted music videos and they would hire us and the whole production team would come out we’d plan it we’d organize it was it was a really fun time I missed the theatricality though that being a little bit more hands -on provided me as a producer you’re basically like a nanny you are



babysitting is what it’s all about it is your job to make sure everything is in line that everyone has what they need that you’re making the right connections and don’t get me wrong for somebody that really loves puzzles it worked for me for a while and I thought you know what I really love the aspect of the advertising that music videos provided but I liked the theatricality and the more hands -on aspect that I



experienced while in theater right so I was like I’m gonna start a advertising agency right synergy design firm and of course around that time I had just had our son and you know obviously you’ve got like two nickels to rub together at that time especially since I had walked away from the film industry and I was looking for somebody who could do a logo on a website and I was being quoted like four or five grand



right and at the time I was like I don’t have that that’s just ridiculous I couldn’t find anyone that would work with me take payments or cut cut me a break at all. And I thought, you know what,


screw this, I’m a smart girl, I can learn. So, I legit taught myself web design, graphic design, everything I needed, just to start my own business.



And a friend of mine who was also struggling at the time was like, can you help me? And of course I’m a big, bleeding heart, so I was like, yes, 100%. I finished with her,



and then one of her friends, and then their friend, and then another friend, and then another friend. And before I really had even recognized it, I had filled this vacuous hole that was really needed,



was having an affordable access to what businesses need to start out with. And that is really how synergy design firm came to be. I think some of the best businesses in the world were started with very different intentions,



and it was only through being open -minded and willing to just help somebody that you truly find that creative aspect and a different path.



So that’s how that got started. I love the whole blending of the entertainment aspect of your background. And then you’re recognizing that entertainment can be used as a marketing vehicle to sell and promote.



And then kind of bringing, I don’t know, like the, what do you call it? When you splice them together in biology,



you’re doing the plants, and it’s like, so you’ve got the roots. Like these hybrids. Yeah, you’ve got this root in marketing with this entertainment blossom aspect. And then this whole,



okay, this is where I love the whole entrepreneurial spirit of Amy is like, okay, now I need to figure out how to do this, and oh, it doesn’t exist, okay, or I can’t have access to it. I’m going to just figure it out.


and make access to it for people that don’t have access that’s amazing yeah I have I have the mental capacity maybe not so much the physical capacity but I have the mental capacity to learn large amounts very very quickly and so being able to take that in and then kind of dispel it to people who don’t have the time don’t have the money don’t have the resources it is it’s a very near and dear subject to my heart



which is why truly I I made a point back then to always be the break that I couldn’t find for myself so I love that is why at Synergy Design Frm I refused to charge industry standard prices you know our websites we charge I think 125 bucks a page that’s it so you can literally walk away with a full website for maybe 300 bucks 400 bucks I have some referrals for you I got some people that have reached out to me



and I’m like I can’t and they’re like I can’t afford a $5 ,000 website and I’m like I’m not the person I while I used to do it but I don’t have the patience so here’s the thing I make websites and I can’t even make them myself for that so hello everybody yeah Amy yeah Amy you know again I was you know once synergy got up and running because like I said it’s a creative agency that specializes in visual assets for



small businesses and nonprofits you know I was that person running around all over the place looking for affordability like affordable studio space to rent for their shoots or their films or their commercials I was the one looking for because again very much that producer mindset of okay I have to put all these pieces together and you know you’re dealing with the models and the catering services you’re dealing with the



insurance for the day the permits for the day it gets really expensive and by the bedtime you’re done with it there’s nothing left in their budget to even pay you so you know know one day I made a really glib comment about how I wish that there was a place that somebody could do it all without having to go everywhere because fun fact about me I actually hate driving it’s so tedious to me I’m just like get me



insurance for the day the permits for the day it gets really expensive and by the bedtime you’re done with it there’s nothing left in their budget to even pay you so you know know one day I made a really glib comment about how I wish that there was a place that somebody could do it all without having to go everywhere because fun fact about me I actually hate driving it’s so tedious to me I’m just like get me



there I don’t want to do it thank God I have a husband that loves to drive so I’m driver and like he’s a good driver too because he like opens my door if my hands are full he’ll even buckle me it’s like full princess mode it’s ridiculous oh you have a one you’re kind of in the life there I’m not starting over because this one is trained but yeah so I was getting lunch at Sunny Hans one day with a friend we



saw this building actually for lease and I’ve grown up around this area I used to do some of my producing work sitting at Cafe Delirium across the street and so again I’ve always loved this building and you know you walk by a building and you kind of put yourself in there like oh that was mine what would it look like what would it be and I told myself I was like I’m just gonna take a look I’m gonna call the



leasing agent just what harm can it do it’s like the biggest lie any woman has ever said to themselves and then two weeks later I had keys to the building and a bit of a stomach ache oh my goodness idea to having the building in two weeks that’s pretty amazing yeah it was it was and that’s the beauty of these moments in life is you have to just simply be ready for them creativity is not always about planning



sometimes it’s about reacting you know I’m recognizing the opportunity when it when it arises absolutely and I mean that that speaks to so much more than business I think it speaks to a lot more but in this situation luckily I was prepared and you know we jumped in we had 45 days to renovate 5 ,000 square feet knocked it out and we’ve been open ever since and so far the community has absolutely just embraced us



because again people need access money cannot always be the gatekeeper to creativity right and so let’s let’s let’s kind of jump into the SDF collective because it’s more than just a co -working space you are offering a ton of value to the community to the creative community and businesses that come in contact with you so so okay you have the building now yeah did you have the dream of the SDF collective when you got



the building or did that come out of oh man what am I gonna do with 5 ,500 square feet yeah no again it was kind of a glib comment that I had made at one of my photo shoots about a year prior so I mean it had been percolating in the back of your head but you know you’re running a business you’ve got a kid you’ve got life and you know in my case autoimmune issue so it was always back there it was wouldn’t it



be nice and then as everyday problems would pop up it was almost like I was filing them in the back of my mind saying okay if I could fix this this is how I would do it and then suddenly I woke up one day and I found out I was like okay you have a big building now surprise don’t fail so you know having the experience first hand of running businesses and then having the experience first hand of being the shooter



on on film sets and on photo shoots and ad campaigns being involved in theater and film and you know marketing and advertising it gave me a very awesome head start on the space and what I would do with it.



Okay so outline to everyone who’s never heard of the STF collective what is it and what do you offer? You know it took me a good year to figure out how to answer that question because we are so many things to so many people but ultimately it boils down that we are a community resource for creatives and entrepreneurs alike.



We are a home for creativity and the creation that we need to thrive. Okay

now again that can be a personal project or it might be something for your business.



You know in this space we can facilitate graphic design, animation, podcast, hair, makeup, special effects, makeup, costuming, we can do augmented reality,



AI, my god so many things and the list is ever -growing. I mean we just added the collective audio side of it so now in the evening times we actually bands can come in it’s kind of like I’m going back to my roots here a little bit but bands can come in and do full album recordings here in the space.



Jory our audio engineer can mix, master, record and do all of that in -house as well. EPKs is what I would do for them as well as music videos can be shot here as well.



So we are simply what people need. In addition to all the things that we offer I’ve taken it one step further and I’ve removed the barrier of finance meaning I actually will provide cameras,



lights, gimbals, loveliers, the equipment. Upstairs we have an edit lab and all of the computers are brand new max with and they come fully loaded with every single Adobe program as well as their free counterparts.



Because we may not always learn on the best of the best we might have learned on Inkscape or GIMP or something else and making that transition is just made a little bit easier when you can still work and then explore when you have the time I know that when we set up for this podcast.



We we Dive into Amy’s cage of equipment. Oh, we we had our fail on the first set of equipment But that was our fault not the equipment’s Right.



We just realized what we needed was not necessarily what Was working Naturally naturally and then you’ll love this then come September.



We’re actually introducing the new creative trainers So I modeled this entire business after a gym and gyms have personal trainers that help you understand the equipment To best fit your needs and goals We are going to mimic that and we’re actually going to have creative trainers here So that they can help you understand the equipment and help best to serve your goals When are they doing the podcasting part because we



need to sign up for that? September 1st it rolls out September 1st and I’m telling you there’s This place is like a little jewel.



It’s so multifaceted that there’s so many sides to this I mean, there’s the space. There’s the availability. There’s the access to equipment Then there’s the knowledge base. We have classes.



We have workshops. We have trainings. We’re adding the creative trainers now And then come to excuse me September 1st. We’re actually also going to be introducing Discord,



it’s a popular server. We’ve actually created a server specifically for collective members so that they can network communicate promote each other You can upload your own events and you know have the group help you because that’s what this should be all about Coming back to synergy.



Yeah for those of you for those that aren’t familiar with Discord, it’s a popular app that people use for gaming. It’s similar to Slack, but there’s so much more you can do on Discord.



Like it’s just, it’s so much more robust. You can do audio calls, I think you can do video calls. Yeah, all sorts of great things. You can upload files, download files.



Yeah, so it’s really connecting the collective. Really, absolutely. And what’s really neat about it too is Discord allows you to have the different channels. So you can converse with people based on that channel.



Like the channels that we’ve got set up are general lounge, suggestion box, promotions, events. On our, you know, the staff side of it,



we have a whole nother server set up for just internal communications. And for that, we’ve got things like staff meetings, minute notes, things like that. So like if somebody needs to ask me a specific question regarding collective audio,



they would just go to the audio channel and talk to me on that channel. They can tag me in it by just doing the little at sign typing my name and then I get a notification so that not everybody does.



So it’s changing the way that we internally are working here at the collective. And I’m really excited to see it change how we as a collective communicates.



That is awesome. So there’s other things that you do in the community. So I know personally that the SDF Collective and Amy won the Chamber,



the Gresham Chamber of Commerce Award for Best Small Business for 2022 or is it 2023? 2023, yeah, this year. So it was this year. And you have to be kind of special to get that kind of recognition.



Even, I mean, and for Amy to get it after one year. Oh, we hadn’t even been open a year. We had been open eight months when we won the award. That’s so awesome. And it’s the Gresham Chamber Business Excellence Award.



There it is. Yeah, it’s a BEA. I think the other chamber members have to vote on that too it’s not like just a random right they have to be nominated yeah definitely we’re not we were nominated and it doesn’t have to be just chamber it can be anybody in the community oh wow and I found out months after that we we got that it was actually we were like the most nominated in any category oh my goodness that’s



awesome because you came to town and you made a splash that’s what she’s doing in a couple of days is a big splash day too yeah so that’s where I’m where I’m going with this it’s like it’s the collective is really becoming a cornerstone in the community for a place to gather but also to promote other businesses raise money for great causes and just bringing the whole community together and so talk a little bit about



your vision of community involvement because clearly you don’t sleep at night I mean you’re you’ve got to be the little engine that could that’s on fact doing something auto immune diseases like having arthritis rheumatoid arthritis you experience a lot of pain so I actually don’t sleep a ton I mean if I get six hours I’m doing it excellent so normally I say I but I learn languages or I read or you know knockout a



million projects but that that’s my secret that’s how um so basically I was taught a very long time ago that nobody cares how much you know until they know how much you care and for some reason that stuck with me to the marrow and because I I do know a lot of things I mean that’s I’m not being unhumbled or anything but I have spent my entire life working at gaining the knowledge base so that I can help people



and it’s growing up with my disability I’ve had so much help you know it’s really satisfying for me to be able to give that back in the way that I can I may not be able to physically open a pickle jar for you but I sure as heck can build you a very affordable website and throw a really kick -ass party okay so my vision for the community is one that thinks of others before ourselves that doesn’t look for what I



can get but what I can give somebody that is willing to look at their neighbor and even if they’re having a really crappy day don’t go that’s cranky you know nothing like that but just say I wonder what’s going on with her I think she needs a hug you know I’ve been known to literally text people like Starbucks gift cards been like you need this today go stop take a minute caffeine that that’s if I could have one



thing for this community is that we would stop thinking so much about ourselves I mean the world is not gonna change until somebody is willing to take just a free -for -all grabbing thing is just tearing everything apart yeah I love it and this is kind of where Sarah and I have our mission on you know aligning first so really getting to know who you are what your values are and building that foundation from the inside



yeah in order to radiate it out and that’s the amplifying part and and I think that really is a testament to you know your vision and how you are operating and why you are experiencing the success that you have.



Because, I mean, we’re all sitting down, but Amy’s just a squirt of a little lady. She’s just five foot nothing. On a tall day,



that’s what I’m thinking of really tall thoughts. She’s got this huge heart and she’s a presence. She walks into the room and you radiate.



That’s funny, I just so don’t feel like that some days. It was the time I’m hobbling and I’m trying really hard not to hobble. Well, and I’ve never visioned, like in my mind,



so it’s so funny, everybody has like a height in my mind, but it’s never their true height. And it’s always funny when I realize how tall or short they really are. I’m like, I don’t vision you that way.



I don’t envision you as a short person. You’re the same height as me and I’m a tall person. Haley, you’re the same. It’s really weird the way I am. And then when I realize someone’s so short, I’m like, what happened to you?



Well, it’s because you are fairly tall. But you also recognize energy of people. Yeah. And so your first vision of people is not the physical.



No. It never has been. So, but yeah, you are a force to be reckoned with, Amy. I hope so. And we love it because it’s a force of good.



I hope so because honestly, the world needs a lot more of less. And I feel like I excel at that. I don’t need any more in my life,



so I just give every ounce that I have to the rest of it. So, and I think that’s kind of where Splash Day is getting a lot of its recognition right now is because it’s so funny. We’ve had so many people who have contacted us and they’re like,



okay, so what is this event about? And we’re like, nothing. It has no purpose. Like there’s no pot to put money in.



There’s no name that needs to be recognized. like this started because I just wanted to throw water balloons outside my business and we knew it would be warm yeah I mean you were hoping it’d be warm well and then you know I was talking to Shannon over at the Center for the Arts and she’s like it’s a great idea let’s shut down Main Street I was like yeah and then I was like oh wait a minute you know the



neighboring businesses may not like it if their patrons are getting pinged with water balloons and I thought well if kids fall those cements not exactly the most forgiving yeah you know so we moved it to the Plaza and then people heard about it and then it was like it has literally gotten away from me I’m gonna be real honest we got DJs there we got burger joints coming in we got Grusham Ford,



Stipley, Platkins County Bank, dozens of other sponsors and yeah I mean you’re actually a sponsor too I’m gonna be helping out yeah I’m gonna be there all day I’m so excited so by the time this podcast airs it will already have occurred yes but it was awesome it was fantastic oh it is amazing I can’t wait but tell me about October because this this is the moment for you to promote what’s happening in October because



this will come out before oh perfect yeah so another thing about me is if there’s not enough already is okay I feel like everything about me has a story well I’ll start with the story I come in one night to set up for my chamber meeting and she’s off there she’s painting these cages oh that yeah that’s that’s true that was that was that is that part of the October thing yes but that was actually we were hired by



the Gresham city city Gresham for their Gresham arts festival they wanted circus things and they heard about my October event and they put two and two together so backing up just a hair my my niece graduated high school.



We went to her awards ceremony and there was all these awards for everything It was like awards for debate awards for this awards for science club. There wasn’t a word for cooking There was an award for choir.



There was not a single award for Anything arts related outside of theater and choir No art. No like makeup.



No graphic design. No animation. No no audio work Nothing in this these high schools and I was leaving the the awards and I looked over at my sister and she looked at me And she goes did you notice that there wasn’t a single award?



And she kind of like pause for a second. It was like she felt bad about saying this and I cut her off And I was like no arts. This is crap, right? I walked away from there and I said,



you know what? We are going to start a scholarship for those that need it in the arts because that was what that award ceremony was All the awards came with scholarship money.



Oh And so every year I host an annual Fundraiser for our scholarship. It’s called the annual creators event We usually hosted around Halloween because let’s face it Halloween is the bestest So it’s our holiday.



Yeah, so this scholarship is literally for anybody who’s starting out I don’t care if you’re 18 or 82 If like you’re a single mom and you want to buy your first laptop to learn graphic design on to bring in a little extra money Great.



That’s what 2 ,500 bucks. If that’s all it takes to change your world Come to me. I will help you. I do not care. Like let’s do this And that’s what’s the purpose of it is so that again,



people have access and so Again, we moved into the space about a year and a half ago last Halloween our annual creators event was a New Orleans Bayou We converted the entire 5 ,000 square feet into a bayou.



We brought in hundreds of trees and cattails and ferns and Our set designer builds these entire sets like one of our photo studios was a 360 -degree interactive cemetery We had bar tenders tarot card readers spelt like a build your own spell jar room We had like I said the interactive element.



We had gone to the expo for curiosities and brought back So much like taxidermied animals and animals and jar. It was really cool And then this year the one that you’re referring to and we will be doing carn evil We will have 20 something plus carnival booths concession stands all custom made games by tailor -made set designs and Gosh,



we will have again bar tenders this year. We’re doing something kind of cool. We’re doing a VIP experience Where you will get to not only have unlimited game play for those carnival booths but you also have vouchers for all the concession stands to get snacks and it comes with a one -on -one Interaction with exotic animals.



It’s gonna be really awesome. What exotic animals? Well, you have to come. Oh my god. You have to come and see the exotic animals. I’m getting so excited right now We’ve got We’ve got fortune tellers coming.



I mean it is insane. We’re carn evil Yes, well one of our bartenders is actually a three -foot tall Bar tender. Oh, wow. He’s being built a custom bar so that he can tend drinks.



That’s awesome Yeah, we’ve got this is gonna be circus performers that are gonna be there. It’s yeah And so let me go back just really quick so when you do this this is to to raise and promote money for scholarships for the arts?



Right, yeah. So all the money from this event, all of it goes directly into a scholarship fund that we use to basically just forward to the people that need it. So how do people get involved?



Absolutely. If anyone is interested in getting involved, they can contact me directly through the SDF Collective. You can go to, reach out to me through there. Or you can come in anytime you want.



We are in downtown Grasham, 20 Northwest 3rd Street. We’re open seven days a week, 10 a .m. to 7 p .m. And we have an open door policy. So if it’s hot outside and you just need to experience great AC,



come on in. Come in, ask for Amy. Say, I want to be involved with Carnival. Yeah, I guarantee you I will be here. I’m here like seven days a week. And she really,



she really is. It’s sort of this. Sunday was my day off and I still came in because that was the day that we were doing some remodels. Oh my gosh. I just, I was super impressed with Amy the first time I met her.



And now I’m like, I’m still like, you’re jaw dropping me today with knowing and understanding the vision behind all of the great work that she does.



I mean, you have a heart of gold. You really do. And you’re seriously one of the most impressive people I’ve ever met. So I want to thank you. I want to thank you for that really.



Make it count. Any last words, Sarah, before we kick off here? I just love the fact that you took something. I feel like you take something that you don’t feel right about and you flip it around and you turn it around and you make it something really,



really amazingly awesome. Anything. Like everybody wants to be involved with. Every story I’ve heard. Like you’re paying, you turn it into like a positive. Like, hey, I’m going to work all the time.



I’m just going to learn all these things. You know, the fact that the arts scholarship didn’t exist. Okay, I’m going to create like every single piece you see the problem. And rather than sit and complain about it,



you just, here’s the solution. Let’s just do it. Here’s the thing. That’s amazing. I didn’t have a choice when it came to my, my arthritis. I was actually diagnosed before I turned six and I was actually one of the lucky ones that was,



I have it in every single joint in my body. So anything that bends, moves, articulates anything, it’s there and I’ve chosen to go no medicine.



So there’s no relief. Now I didn’t choose the disability, but the rest of it is my choice and it’s my choice how I choose to handle it.



And yeah, I could sit on a couch and I could complain and nobody in their right mind would fault me for it because the pain that I deal with on a day -to -day basis is unbelievable.



I mean, I’ve literally had nurses that I’ve gone in for emergency surgeries and they’re like, why didn’t you come in sooner? You must be in agonizing pain. And I was like, I thought this was normal. Like this is, is this not normal kind of a thing.



And at the end of the day, that is what it means to be human. It is our choices. It’s the choices that we make when we wake up.



It is the choices that we make when we choose our food. It is the choices we make within business and family. Inherently, that has always been our number one rallying cry as a society all throughout history is the right to choose.



Why in the world would I squash that with a bad attitude when it’s completely within my power to make it positive? It’s all about how you look at things.



And I can honestly give all credit to my father for that because whenever I was young and my friends were doing something that I couldn’t quite physically do, he would look at me and say,



all right, let’s make it happen. Like I remember I was 16. let’s take my driver’s test and obviously one of the big things in passing that test is being able to turn on the car. I couldn’t turn my wrist to turn the key and I was devastated.



I was so embarrassed and a lot of it is embarrassment especially when you’re 16 the whole world is out to get you. He took me to Goodwill. We went to the silverware aisle.



He said pick out any spoo, any utensil you want. I was like I trusted him at this point because I was reading and I picked out a really fun spoon that bumps on it like braille and I liked the texture.



He took it home. He drilled a hole in the handle with a nut and a bolt. He screwed on the key because at the time it was one of the old -school keys right and when you put it in to the addition all you have to do is lift up on the spoon and push down.



I would have been like I can’t and a freaking spoon literally made it so I could drive anywhere on the continent.



It turned your I can’t into how can I. What can I use to get me to where I need to go? Seriously sometimes it’s a spoon that all this separates you.



And that’s a life lesson for everybody. Oh yeah. I mean seriously. Oh yeah. How can I make this happen? And it’s a choice. You can look for the opportunity or you can sit and complain.



What are you gonna choose? You probably have a ton to talk about energetically and this is a powerful one like there is there is no like I can’t add to this.



This is a powerful first guess. Thank you, Amy. I’ll come back any time. We love it. Absolutely. So please come in, check out the SDF Collective,



meet Amy Curtis. You will not regret knowing her. She’s amazing. What’s your SDF Collective .com? Yeah, it’s or conversely it’s



One of the two, you’ll find me on either of them. And get the contact, you’ll click contact, I’ll go directly to Amy and then you’re in her phone and then you have direct contact with her all the time. It’s true, everyone texts me all day long.



I keep creative hours so don’t feel bad about texting me. It’s fine. I think you have to keep creative hours to be a creative. I feel like that’s kind of the way it works. I hope so.



Otherwise it’s very poorly named. Well, anyway, I think that’s gonna be a wrap for now. Thanks for joining in with us and keep coming back because it’s only gonna,



I mean, it’s just, we’re gonna figure it out. It’s gonna get better and better and we’re definitely gonna have Amy back because you just, of course, you ended it with a whole conversation that needs to happen.



Well, there you go. Oh yeah. Cliff hanger, that’s what I did it. Excellent. Okay. So we’re aligned to amplify. I’m Haley Lewis. And I’m Sarah Garrison and we’ll see you next time.



Bye. Bye.