Hello, my name is Ryan Abney and some of my titles are: wife, mom, and business owner. I live in Birmingham with my husband, teenage daughter, and toy poodle. I own and operate Ryan Abney Event Design and Curated, The Collection.
Who Am I?
When you ask someone who they are, the response is usually adjectives or a list of titles. Those things describe aspects of you, but are not who you are.
I am a person who loves the reflection staring back at me in the mirror, who appreciates the life I live, a person that strives toward growth both personally and professionally, and a person that seeks to help others. Some of the activities I enjoy are reading, family time, traveling, old movies, theater, a stellar tea service, and a nice glass of wine.
Supporting woman-owned businesses, both locally and nationally, is something I am extremely passionate about. As a woman who owns small businesses, the challenges are different, and I want to support and uplift as many other women as I can. I also strive to help create memories. I come up with solutions when others see chaos. I am able to bring warmth and calm to my peers and clients.
Self-care for me has typically been travel. When I travel, I completely disconnect from my emails, cell phone, and social media. I focus on spending time with my family, napping, reading, and going to the spa. We have not traveled since 2019 and I began feeling the deprivation of my loss of scheduled self-care.
I now have a standing mani/pedi appointment (during which I put down my phone and am present in the moment). I also try to schedule brunch with my bestie at least once every six weeks. She and I are both the “put your head down and get it done” type, so sometimes it would be months before we made time in our schedules to decompress together.
Something I need to be better about is date night with the hubby. We used to go on day dates, but with what I am calling “Event Season 2.0”, the time to carve out has been minimal.
It’s my crew! The fam! The reason why I do “All The Things”! I have been in a relationship with my husband for 20 years and married 15 years, this past August. We were friends that grew to be so much more. I truly believe our foundation of friendship is the glue that holds our bond. Nearly one year to the date of being married, I took a separation package from the company we both worked for to become a stay-at-home mom.
I started my business when our daughter was nine months old. It afforded me the opportunity to do what I loved, while also having the flexibility to spend the time I wanted with my daughter when she was young. My husband never pushed me to be on the fast track, but respected how I needed to make this happen. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
Fast forward and I now have a teenager and two growing businesses. My daughter sees my drive to succeed (measured by my own definition of success) and that makes me proud. My husband and I have brainstormed, launched, pivoted, and shuttered several businesses over the years; but we always grow from each experience. Being the mother to a teenager has its challenges, but I would not trade it for the world. Our daughter is kind, funny, intelligent, and equity seeking. The kind of person that puts others ahead of herself. She makes us proud to say we are her parents.
Last, but not least, is our five-year-old toy poodle. She is only six pounds, but full of all the sass that little dogs are known for. Her desire to protect from things that only she can see is endearing and our family would not be the same without her.
I grew up in a small rural town in Illinois and moved to Michigan (Farmington Hills) when I was 13 years old. It was a few days before high school and needless to say, I was a poster child for teen angst.
The slow-paced life that I grew up with was in direct contrast to the swiftness of the high school I attended. Academically I excelled, but socially I struggled to acclimate to the newness of my surroundings. I was a country girl used to living on acres between two working farms and spending Friday nights playing board games with my family. I did not know the cities, the schools, the “cool” things I was supposed to care about. I still enjoyed spending time with my family and reading.
I have always loved to read and can lose myself in a novel, no matter my surroundings. I would spend my weekend reading a new novel and not be the least bit concerned that this was not considered the average teenage behavior. This has not changed; I love a good book and lean into the new worlds, new feelings, and new experiences that these books expose me to.
Detroit Mom Content
The opportunity to become a contributor for Detroit Moms is exciting. There is a unique perspective I can bring to the group. I am a woman raised in a rural town, that attended a private Catholic school, raised by parents that were proud business owners, instilled with an appreciation for education, a respect for all cultures, and a drive to be the best version of myself.
My husband and I are now raising a daughter to know that she is and will always be enough. We are doing this in a climate that often judges (perhaps inadvertently at times) based on skin color before they know anything about the person. My skin has melanin, but that does not define who I am; just what I look like.