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Friday, June 21, 2024

5 Years to the Prime

“Consider within the me, that believes in you.” I say this continuously in my seminars and within the salon I co-own with Corina Stammworthy – The Laundromutt. It resonates with me as a result of many groomers, together with myself, say “I can’t do what they do, as a result of…” *Insert limitless causes right here.* However there may be at all times somebody trying up at you saying the identical factor.

My title is Macie Pisa. As a second-generation groomer, I grew up saying there was no approach I used to be going to be a groomer. It appeared arduous, nerve-racking and messy. I needed to be an inside decorator! I needed to stay in Seattle! I might be cool and artsy! Properly, right here I’m in Buffalo, New York, doing precisely what I stated I wouldn’t. I adore it, and I nonetheless get to be cool and artsy.

I started grooming in 2014 after working two years as a bather for an area salon in Buffalo. I lastly determined this was the place I needed to be. I used to be a cocky, know-it-all child (some would say I nonetheless am), and I give loads of credit score to the proprietor of that salon for sticking it out, instructing me and giving me a superb basis.


She was a sort lady, at all times serving to her group and providing her salon and workers to town shelter anytime that they had a canine in want. It was a terrific alternative for me, as I made a decision to take a kind of canines on as a foster in hopes I may take him to my very first grooming contest. We went on to compete at Groom Expo in Hershey, Pennsylvania, in September 2014. We positioned second in Entry, and I used to be hooked!

At PetQuest in 2015, I competed in Entry once more with my 9-month-old, black Commonplace Poodle pet, Vlad. We positioned first, and I used to be on my approach out of Entry! (There are three ranges in competitors grooming – Entry, Intermediate and Open, and it takes three first place wins to maneuver to the subsequent degree.)

PetQuest was additionally the primary present Corina and I traveled to collectively, and it was the beginning of top-of-the-line years of my life. I made lifelong associates, discovered, traveled and had a blast. We caught to the East Coast reveals and ate baggage of salad, cups of noodles, PBJs and stayed at some questionable resorts. I’m fairly certain we break up tacos and margaritas after my placement at that present.

It’s costly to journey on a regular basis. Plus, Corina and I had a child salon at residence to handle, however we had a lot enjoyable it was price it! That first yr we discovered how vital making associates and splitting the price of all of the bills was. By March of 2016, I had made my three first place wins, and I used to be in Intermediate. Then in September of 2016, I used to be nominated for Up-and-Coming Groomer of the Yr AND had made it into Open with the large youngsters, able to earn some factors!

The New England Grooming Present was subsequent, and that’s the place I made a decision GroomTeam was going to be my objective. I hadn’t dared to suppose I used to be able to making it. However it was my first Open present, and I obtained my first factors, seven factors on my Bedlington Terrier.

Seven factors. It doesn’t appear to be a lot, however it put me on the scoreboard. What’s the scoreboard? It’s a listing of each competitor that has earned factors in that calendar yr. It’s type of an enormous deal, particularly the primary time you make it. And I used to be No. 20! I grew to become decided to get to the highest 10 – the lower off for who will get their GroomTeam jacket and who doesn’t.

The following yr was attention-grabbing. When you’re within the decrease ranges, you hear concerning the drama and the stress of Open, however it’s straightforward to remain out of it and hold issues thrilling. At my first present of 2017 – my second ever present in Open – I used to be informed I had solely made it this far as a result of I used to be fairly and that I wasn’t prepared. It was an enormous blow to my confidence and a impolite awakening of my new REAL world of aggressive canine grooming. I began to listen to extra criticism and develop into paranoid about my expertise. I began to marvel if this was actually for me. I ended having enjoyable and ended the yr with three factors and loads of frustration.

In 2018, I made a decision to take time for myself and took the yr off. However I didn’t cease grooming. I practiced, discovered and watched from the web as my associates did superb issues. I began to essentially miss being on the market. I missed the frenzy, the stress, the thrill; and I missed my associates! When competing, you make associates from all around the nation, and also you see them fairly frequently at reveals. It’s particular to have folks round you who perceive your drive and fervour for such a weird and area of interest sport. Sure, I stated it – SPORT!

I got here again in 2019, and I got here again robust. I used to be decided to make the highest 10! I wasn’t going to let different folks break my enjoyable. So, Corina and I packed up the canines and hit the competition circuit. We taught courses and began attempting to get extra time to benefit from the locations we visited. It was a terrific yr stuffed with superb canines, and I ended the yr within the TOP FIVE! I had surpassed my objective and was going to obtain my jacket.

I had a lot enjoyable competing in opposition to so many superb groomers and pushing myself to see how far I may get. It felt so good to show to myself and to the those who informed me I couldn’t that I completely may! In March of 2020, I obtained my workforce jacket and my official recognition as a member of GroomTeam USA.

Making it onto GroomTeam isn’t the top all. It’s a continuing wrestle to remain on prime. Yearly everybody grows and improves, and the competitors will get tougher. It’s nice encouragement to proceed studying.

However why? Why will we do it? Many opponents attempt to be on GroomTeam as a mark of validity as an teacher. We see it as a approach for folks to know that we all know what we’re speaking about.

It’s extra than simply that. There’s one thing superb about being the very best, about having proof that every one your arduous work was for one thing. That out of everybody in your nation who competed, you had been on the prime. You get to the highest 10, and you then begin to dream greater – you begin to understand there’s one other degree and you may be the very best on the planet.

And that’s the place they get you. The place you get sucked in without end. The place you possibly can by no means slack otherwise you’ll lose – not an precise sport, however the sport you play with your self the place you possibly can by no means fall behind. There’s at all times one other canine, one other breed, one other trim.

It’s not a simple objective, and it’s not a simple life; however we wouldn’t need it if it was straightforward.


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