Nicky Bright, who was working as a store manager at a retail outlet, became worried after realizing that her childrenthen aged 16 and 21, had repeatedly tried to get a hold of her.
When she eventually got in touch with then, the call completely shattered Nicky’s world and led her falling to the lowest point in her life, Wales Online reports.
The 51-year-old from Cardiff said: “So I take the call and, it happened really quickly, my son said: ‘Mum, Dad’s having an affair’.
“Both my children found out before me and I was just: ‘Wow, wow, it can’t be right’. I even thought my kids were wrong – how could they know he was having an affair?
“It took me about five minutes to get home and the whole time I was driving back I was just constantly thinking I just wanted to find out if this was true.”
At home Nicky confronted her husband who confirmed it was true and he wanted to leave.
Nicky said: “I cried morning, noon and night for the first eight weeks. I couldn’t stop – the feelings I was feeling were so overwhelming. You feel as if you’ve lost somebody, like they’ve died, but you also lose yourself too and everything else that goes with that – it was horrific.
“I was knocked off my feet completely for a year – upside-down, on the floor – struggling to keep on top of the bills. Financially I was cashing in all my savings but I just couldn’t keep my head above water – the mortgage was big, gas and electricity was massive, I was falling behind with everything. “
Over the months Nicky struggled with the stress of the situation – she lost weight, her hair started falling out, and within a year she had to leave work.
She said: “I remember going into my bank account and there was 99p in there so I couldn’t even buy food for the kids.
“I am so lucky my parents could come up and buy food. It is the most horrific feeling in the world. I wanted to drown my sorrows and I was going into a very bad place.
“I knew I was going down and I almost felt like I was being dragged into the darkness somewhere that was so horrible. It was just very, very scary.”
Then one evening when Nicky was at total rock bottom, as she lay in darkness knowing she was about to lose the house and had no fight left, she heard her children whispering in the hall. Her daughter di lei said she was too afraid to open the door and go into the dark room because she thought her mum di lei might have taken her own life di lei.
Remembering that moment makes Nicky emotional as she recalls hearing the fear in her daughter’s voice. It was the shock that she needed to try to drag herself back up.
Nicky said: “So from there I just decided: ‘Okay, you’ve been a boss, you know how to make money, you’ve turned things around in the store – now come up with a solution.”
Nicky had hosted foreign students studying in Wales at her home in the past so it gave her the idea to rent out the house to get some income as she worked out a plan. She moved out with only a suitcase of clothes and belongings left, stayed with her parents di lei, and took time to look at her strengths di lei.
She had worked as an estate agent and she had run her own furniture upcycling cottage business when the children were small before she went into retail.
She loved interior design and felt she had a creative flair. Nicky came up with an idea of focusing on styling and interior design and combining it with her di lei past property and hosting experience.
Through the Covid-19 lockdowns she worked on her branding and fine tuning the business plan and even changed her name to Nicky Bright.
Nicky said: “That felt like a rebirth – it was amazing. I felt really excited about the business too – this is something I’m really passionate about, that I love, and I know I’m good at doing. I thought: ‘I love Wales and I love property so I’m going to go for it.’ “
There were stressful moments but eventually Nicky Bright Holidays was born with the selling point of redesigning a client’s holiday let and then managing the property for them but also with the eventual aim of one day having her own holiday let too.
Now Nicky has secured and just finished doing up her own holiday let and she couldn’t be happier.
She said: “It’s an amazing feeling to have my own cottage. Naughty me, I went to view it before I had funding but something in me said I had to go and see it – there was just something about it.”
Nicky has built up a network of numerous sources for securing statement pieces she finds to create the most amazing interiors for her clients’ holiday lets and now her own. She combines this with clever and unusual design ideas to make each holiday let a unique experience.
She said: “I want to give my guests an experience – they are going to come into Wales, discover the most beautiful gems of Pembrokeshire, all the beaches, and while they’re in the property it’s not just a holiday home with a bed and a towel on it. It’s an experience. “
The aim is for guests to fall in love with a holiday let that she had created and to feel that it is luxury but also welcoming like a home.
And at no point did Nicky ever doubt what she was doing at her own holiday let and years of hardship meant living in a building site did not faze her.
Of all the special areas Nicky has created in her holiday let, the main bedroom is her special spot.
Now the holiday let transformation is complete and Nicky is glad she has spent extra budget on the finishing touches to the design to make it an extra special experience for her guests.
And of the extra luxury touches that again have added to the size of the renovation budget Nicky stands by her choices.
Looking back the journey Nicky has been on over the past five years has been full of battles with drama and depression that have eventually created a new dawn and the birth of a totally reinvigorated and determined person.
Nicky said: “My husband did me a favor because by falling I picked myself up and by picking myself back up I created a new person, a new life, a new identity, a new home, and a new business and I would have, in the past, thought that pretty impossible to have done. “
For anyone struggling then as well as seeking help with challenges Nicky said you’re the only person who can make something good happen.
She added: “Focus on what it is you want and it will come to you through hard work and determination – but the biggest thing that will hold you back is fear of failure or it not turning out how you want it to be. mustn’t be – you have to get rid of that. I will never let anything negative stop me ever again. “
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