Please tell us a little bit about your early years! Where are you from and what was life like?
I was born and raised in Buffalo, NY by a single mother, who was a drill sergeant in the United States Army, she didn’t play any games. I had a very strict and sheltered upbringing. I was an only child, on both my maternal and paternal sides, in which my father was pretty much absent in my life. I knew who he was, but he lived in another state with his wife, so I did not see him much at all. His mother and father were a part of my upbringing, as they helped my mother to raise me during my childhood years.
I was a dancer from birth, studying ballet, modern, pointe, and African dance. Dance became my life. As a dance major at a Performing Arts middle/high school, I also was a master dance instructor for many years and traveled from state-to-state instructing students of various levels. Life in my early years had its ups and downs, but my mother instilled great values and morals in me as a young child which carry with me today.
We know that you’ve overcome so many obstacles to get where you are today. Tell us about when you first became a mother, and what that experience was like for you?
I had my first child at the young age of 16. My mother was devastated, because I was such the quiet “picture perfect child”, straight “A” student, this was unexpected behavior from me. But she was very supportive after the realization settled that she would have a grandchild. And my mother had several miscarriages and a still-born child after me, so this contributed to her eventually being happy to have a new addition to our small family. It was challenging; many sleepless nights, sore nipples, and often overwhelming trying to study for school and care for an infant, but it also motivated me to keep going.
I graduated top ten of my high school class and received scholarships to college. With acceptance letters to the University of Buffalo, Morgan State, and Howard University, I chose Howard for Pre-Med. My dream was to be an OB/GYN. My mother kept my daughter while I went off to Howard.
As a mother of now 10, what can you say about your motherhood journey? What advice do you have for mothers that think they can’t chase their dreams because of their motherly responsibilities?
Motherhood is the most challenging yet rewarding responsibility a woman will have. I was able to overcome many obstacles in life “because” I had my children to push for! My belief was that “they didn’t ask to be here and deserve the world”. None of their fathers were in their lives, so that was a challenge in itself being a single mother. My oldest son didn’t see nor hear from his father until a few months ago, and he is now 20 years old.
My advice to mothers who think that they can’t chase their dreams because of their motherly responsibilities is that you have to know your “super-power”. God designed woman to bore other human beings, we give “birth” to new creation and life, that’s deep!- think about that! We sacrifice our minds, bodies, and souls to replenish the Earth, therefore we were created to withstand, to endure. As mothers, we must take care of ourselves as well to be sound and strong for our children, but we must also be reminded that “our child(ren) are our “WHY”.
Nothing in life can stop YOU, but YOU! Refuse to be a statistic, refuse to settle for less, refuse to settle for a life of mediocracy. You, your children, and your children’s children deserve a life of abundance and generational wealth. You are capable of reaching your goals, even with your children, just strategize the plan of “HOW” to obtain your goals, write the vision and make it plain. And then EXECUTE! Your MINDSET is everything.
We also know that you’ve overcome homelessness! To God be the Glory! — Tell us about that experience and what it taught you about yourself and about others.
My mother passed away and life began to spiral downhill fast. It was soon after moving to Atlanta that we became homeless. When we were homeless and living in my truck, I would stay up all night to watch over them while they slept. I prayed and cried over them asking God for his protection and provision. Many sleepless nights and days I went hungry, but again I had to keep pushing for my children who were all small at the time. I would always think “these innocent babies did not ask to be here and deserved so much more than poverty, struggle, and going without.” I knew that my mother raised me to be a visionary and to manifest what I wanted in life. Therefore, I dug deep into my roots and upbringing and fought a long, hard battle, but with God, I conquered every storm and here I stand to tell the story.
I was alone on the journey of homelessness. Family turned us away, and homeless shelters told me that my family was too large, and that they didn’t have room for us. I pleaded with my children’s fathers to take them until I could get back on my feet, and they refused, although I was owed over $100K in child support- not a dollar contributed to house, feed, or support the children.
But it taught me a great lifelong lesson- to take accountability! I allowed them to impregnate me, and I would accept responsibility. It taught me to dig down deep to soul search why I was attracting all the wrong men and succumbing to the mistreatment. I also realized that all that I had and needed was GOD! While I was looking for love and acceptance in all the wrong places, he was there all along. The closer I grew to him, the more he would send resources, programs, and people in my life to help get us through each and every aspect of the hardest part of my life.
It taught me humility, perseverance, patience, forgiveness, and a greater grind and hustle like no other. It was like the story in the bible of how Jesus fed 5,000 with the “miracle of the five loaves and two fish”, I learned how to make ends meet, often times robbing Pete to pay Paul, BUT GOD! It taught me what I could do with little to nothing, and how tenacious I was. And in this God grew my character as a mother, woman, future entrepreneur, motivational speaker, and empowerment icon.
When did you develop your passion for the medical spa field? Which came first; nursing or spa?
It was when my mother became terminally ill that I became interested in nursing. As her primary caretaker, along with her Hospice nursing team, I then decided that I wanted to pursue nursing. I wanted to become a labor and delivery nurse, which never happened- LOL. Obtaining a doctorate degree was not one of my goals. This came into fruition as my nursing career began to take its course and I was excelling faster than I had expected. Being promoted to charge nurse and supervisor within the first few years of becoming a RN is what motivated me to further my career from an Associate degree, Bachelors, Master’s, Post Master’s, and now Doctorate. Obtaining my doctorate in nursing was a way to pay homage to my mother who never got to see me become a doctor. But now as a Doctor of Nursing practice, I know she is proud of me as Dr. Ebonee.
After dealing with the politics of corporate, and realizing that no matter how hard you work, the years of sacrifice that you put in and time away from your family for a “job”, they can and will easily terminate you without cause or remorse, I then entertained the idea of “owning my own” business. During the pandemic, I traveled as a nurse and was exposed to nurses who no longer just worked bedside but were entrepreneurs, BOSSES/ CEO’s. It was then the seed was planted, and I was able to invest in opening my own med spa- Royalty Body Spa & Wellness, in Roswell, GA.
Tell us about your place of business! What can we expect from Royalty Body Spa, and what was your experience like becoming a business owner and entrepreneur?
Royalty Body Spa & Wellness is a luxury med spa located in Roswell, GA that offers an array of services to the community to enhance not only the outer beauty but also the inner beauty as well. At Royalty Bod Spa & Wellness we provide an array of services such as body contouring, which includes laser lipo, cavitation, wood therapy, and skin tightening. We provide cosmetic post-op care for clients who have surgery, teeth whitening, yoni steaming, guided meditation, ionic foot detox, sauna detox wrap, breast and butt vacuum therapy, and even gender reveal. — We also provide mobile services. Products such as waist trainers, yoni oil, yoni wash, and yoni herbs are also available for sale. Monthly courses are also taught on body contouring, post-op care, and teeth whitening. I also invest in educating the community on how to have a sustainable Airbnb business, open a business and obtain business credit/funding.
The road to entrepreneurship was challenging and honestly still is. It is not for everyone-not for the weak. There are days and nights without sleep. You eat, sleep, and breathe your brand/your business. You must be willing to withstand the journey and also remain a student to learn from a mentor or coach who is successful at what you are trying to do. That’s the part that many people miss, hiring a good coach to guide and support you.
Is there anything you still want to do personally, or in business that you haven’t had the chance to do yet?
Personally, I want to have a TV show or documentary on the story of my life. I want Tyler Perry to produce it. I also want to do a TED Talk and have a scholarship for single mothers who aspire to go to nursing school. Those have been my desires for a while now and I believe they are closer than I realize.
As a businesswoman, I aspire to collaborate with a few investors on various ideas that I have that are billionaire ideas, but I need the capital and team to invest and believe in the vision.
How do you stay healthy and balanced with all that you have on your plate? Who has been some of your biggest supporters along this journey?
I am adamant about self-care, and so I pray, worship, meditate and have a daily devotion daily. I also incorporate healthy eating habits such as being a pescatarian and drinking a gallon of water and minimal sweets in my diet. I don’t smoke and only consume table wines occasionally during dinner. I also exercise at least 3 times a day. Often, I take a weekend to myself once a month to shop, walk, get a long full body massage and sometimes get an Airbnb or hotel room to get away.
It’s important for me not to take in negative energy, so I am mindful of what I consume, hear and see into my spirit. I keep a small circle and stay grounded by always counting my blessings, looking at things through a positive lens, and having a great sense of humor.
My biggest supporters have been my children, my husband, and the various mentors and coaches (million dollar networks) that God has connected me to or drawn them to me.
Is there anything you have coming up that you’d like to share with our networks? How can we stay connected to your updates?
My book was due to debut in March of this year, but by there being so much to share, I wanted to make sure it really focused on the tests, and the testimonies, and connects with the soul of each reader. My memoir is powerful and depicts the journey of my life- from childhood to the present. It dives deep into childhood traumas, grief, and poor choices, but also breaks down each trial and victory. My book is entitled “The Grit, The Grind & The Glory”. This title was chosen because I had to have the determination to withstand the storms, the grind, and hustle to push through adversity, and God had the Glory every time. The book serves as motivation to other women to encourage them to persevere during the most challenging times in their life.
The book is now scheduled to be ready for purchase in August 2022. A pre-book sale will be available mid-July 2022.
There is so much about me that the world does not know and will see. I am currently teaching classes on passive income such as Airbnb, as I am a super host of many properties and am sharing this knowledge with those who are ready to create residual income. I also am very focused on my coaching business and being booked and busy as an empowerment speaker at various events, podcasts, and conferences.
My focus is to continue to operate in my purpose, which is to help virtuous women of valor fix their crowns. Through my life experiences, I help guide and support women through tough times and serve as a mentor to them to overcome any obstacles.
I am available for speaking engagements, coaching, and mentorship.
To Connect With Dr. Ebonee follow and connect with me on social media at:
FB: Ebonee Gresham RN
Business IG: @royaltybodyspa
Business FB: Royalty Body Spa