My name is Pamela and I invented Pambra’s, “The Original Bra & Tummy Liners.” This is my story.
How it began
I was pretty much a stay-at-home mom taking care of three kids, running my home, and taking an occasional part-time job to supplement the family income. I had always heard how homemakers had far more skills then they gave their selves credit for, such as organizer, banker, seamstress, etc. Now to turn that in to a business was a whole different thing.
One night, I kissed my husband good night and, as I did, I said to him, “I wish I could find a way to make money and stay home.” This was my light bulb moment. Like a beacon in the night this idea pops into my head, it was 9:00 pm and I was so wired with these thoughts filling my head. I got up and sat writing notes as they filled my head until 4 am. It all just kept coming from out of nowhere.
In the morning, when I shared with my husband what happened, he says, without any enthusiasm, “Ya, Ya.” Oh ye of little faith, I thought. That day I went to the library and found books on what to do with an invention. The same day this company shows up on TV, you know one of those companies that will develop your invention for you? So the following day, I went in to talk to them and signed papers.
I continued to pay this company for well over a year and was getting nowhere. In the mean time, my husband had shared my invention with his coworkers. My husband’s boss kept trying to invest. I was not interested in this. I did not want to be obligated to anyone.
One night soon after my husband was on the phone and I heard our checking account number being given out. It was my husband’s boss. I was suddenly filled with mixed emotions of anger and excitement. I would finally see my “idea” come to light but at the cost of another.
The time came where I to discuss repayment of his investment. He sat across from me in my living room. I asked him, “Ok, what would you like in return?”
His answer was “nothing.”
“No,” I said, “Come on everyone wants something.”
“I am your Angel.”
“No.” I said, “What is it you really want?”
He said, “No. I am just to be called your Angel. No one must ever know it is me.” He continued on to say, “I could die tomorrow and you would be out an investor.” Even if it wouldn’t sell, he wanted to take the risk and did not want to be known.
Things all happened so fast; I was a corporate President over night, with an office and a warehouse. I was given permission to do anything I needed to do, including hiring of contractors and employees. He made sure I had a brand new car and a wardrobe full of business clothing.
Sandy, a friend of mine, and I had to test and retest fabric, lining material, and labels until we got the right combination for moisture absorption and comfort. A lot of it was trial and error. My Angel would always tell me “you’re doing just fine, continue on,” and, “I don’t want you to worry about anything.”
I never had a person like this in my life before; I knew I was blessed in many ways. My Angel had told me once that his father had told him “Son, find an invention and you will have your greatest riches.” My Angel searched his whole life for an invention, even inventing and patenting an idea for bicycle spokes. He offered many words of wisdom from his own experiences.
About a year into working with him he developed a cough. It lasted a long time and I kept asking him what it was and he said “the doctors are sure it’s just a cough.” Finally, after another four months had gone by, he had told me that I would not see or hear from him the first week of April. Well April 1st came and everything happened. We got our first large catalog company. We were contacted by our local Channel 4 News and a high-end fashion magazine from New York had called wanting to do an article on Pambra’s.
I knew my Angel would surely want to hear about all this. I could not reach him by phone at all; on the night of April 2, I said “Lord, where is my angel?” I no sooner spoke those words and a hospital name, as well as an unknown city, came to my mind.
I was lead all along by these little talks with God, so I trusted what had come to me. I went to the phone and ask the operator if there was a hospital in the town I ask for, she quickly gave me the number. I was shocked.
I called the number and asked for my Angel by name. The receptionist transferred my call to the Cardiac Intensive Care Unit. I had hair standing up off my arms by now. A nurse answered and said he was there, but he could not come to the phone right now.
I called again the next morning and again he could not talk. So I ask the nurse to give him a message, “could you please tell him the lady on the phone wants him to know she loves him and is praying for her Angel.” The nurse returns to say he had the biggest smile on his face since arriving four days earlier.
I waited a few days and called again, this time I got to speak to him. He was more worried for me then for himself. I kept telling him, “I am fine and so is the company.” He insisted that he had to get more money to me, and I said “that was not necessary.” I asked if I could come to see him and he said “no I don’t want you to see me like this.” He kept saying he would be out in a few days. “I don’t want you to worry about anything,” he tells me.
When I ask what was wrong he did not have any answers for me. So, I respected his wishes and did not go. A couple of days went by again and I called again, but this time he could not come to the phone at all. I knew in my heart that God was telling me to go to the hospital.
So I dressed like the business women he taught me to be, grabbed all the courage I could find, and went to the hospital. Walking through the high foyer, I glanced around at how pretty it was and walking slowly asked myself, “what will I say?” When I got to the double doors I used the wall page and ask to see my Angel by name. I walked in and his eyes were closed; he was connected to oxygen, and a heart monitor.
I placed my hand on his and called him by name, but there was no response. So I softly began to pray for him hoping he would hear my voice. His entire body began to shake, I realize later that he was crying inside, but could not respond. I finished my prayer and left. I left my business card with the desk to put in his file, thinking he would want to know who had come to see him.
I returned the next day and he was still sleeping, due to his pain medication. I held his hand and said his name; he squeezed my hand this time but did not open his eyes. A lady came in and said she would like to talk to me. She identified herself as the hospital social worker. We sat and talked and she revealed to me that my Angel had had surgery to remove a mass in his lungs and that the surgery had left a gaping hole. He would not make it out of the hospital. I sat there totally numb and then fell apart. I was frozen in my chair and could not bring myself to even leave. The hospital staff somehow knew the relationship was important and that I should know about his health. He was not sick when we started working together just 14 months earlier. He could not have known he was going to be this gravely ill.
I prayed that I would see his blue eyes again. I just needed to know that he had the lord in his heart. On my fourth day in a row to visit, I was wiping his face and let the cloth put moisture on his lips when he opened his eyes. My request had been answered; the blue eyes were looking at me. I was holding his hand when I said to him “I love you my friend and I need to know if you have the lord in your heart. If you are going to heaven…” He tried to talk with the oxygen line down his throat and could not; instead he took my hand and pressed it into his heart. I knew that instant, his answer was yes.
I stayed all night; I wanted to be near him when it was time for him to leave. At one point, I quietly asked, “Lord when will you take him?” My eyes stopped on the calendar and the date was Passover. It was Easter weekend. I knew this was “his” Passover day as well. Early the next morning, as the sun began coming through his big picture window, his breathing pattern had changed, as did the heart monitor. I asked God to send someone to help him on his way. I suddenly felt this heavy presence over my left shoulder. I looked around the empty room and back at him. I told him “I love you, now go and find the face of Jesus.” Just then, the presence was gone and the heart monitor drifted to a flat line shortly after that. I knew within my heart that his spirit left first, and that there was no pain in death. My Angel found his greatest riches, the ones his father had told him to seek out as a child. He had found the invention that, in the end, changed his life, and mine.
He left behind all his wisdom and knowledge for me to grow with. I will be forever blessed by having him as my friend.
Where we are today
With all of the above said, I could never put Pambra’s out to the public without you knowing how it came about. Ladies grab your dream, a vision or whatever you want to call it and run with it. Never let anyone tell you that you cannot live a dream. Seek out your dreams. Life is too short to not let yourself soar to your full potential. Perhaps you will have your greatest riches as well. I have been in magazines and newspapers all over the United States. I was voted as one of twenty-four “Up and Coming Young Business Leader” within our community. I received ownership of the Pambra’s name with the United States Patent office, three months after my Angel left. I will forever miss his words, “I don’t ever want you to worry about anything” and his constant encouragement “you’re doing everything just right.”
*I have purposely left my Angels name out of the above testimony, I know now that it was not his name or mine that is important. What was important is the purpose that Pambra’s had in his life, mine, and now yours!
Currently we have imposters, I’d like to think that they would have never come about. However, I’ve learned, since starting this business that you know you have a good product when someone comes along and tries to copy it.