If you haven't heard, RockieArambula, the owner of MoonfyreMetaphysical has brain cancer and had to close her store of 16 years in Downtown Campbell. Of all of the ways for us to lose a business, this way has to be the worst. When you're around small businesses, you say a lot of goodbyes because things don't work out and businesses close. That's bad enough, but even worse is when you see healthy businesses close because the owner became ill or went through a major life event.
MoonfyreMetaphysical had been a cornerstone of the Downtown Campbell community for most of its 16 years here. They were especially engaged in their earlier days when Downtown Campbell was a struggling retail district that barely resembled what it is today. Before Moonfyremoved in, their space had turned over numerous times in the years before and even as Moonfyreyear after year, ALL of the businesses around it came and went and came and went again.
About an hour before the door at 401 E. Campbell Ave would close as MoonfyreMetaphysical for the last time, I stopped in to thank Rockie'sdaughter Kayleighfor Moonfyrebeing a part of our community for so long and for the role that the store played in helping Downtown Campbell get to where it is now. Kayleigh'svoice broke a little when she recalled how nobody wanted her mom to open the store and everyone thought she was crazy for pursuing her dream of having her own shop. "This little space has been so good to us for 16 years. I just hope that it'll be just as good to whoever gets it next."
We don't know what's next for the old Moonfyreshop, but we do know what's next for Rockieis a lot of cancer treatment that is hopefully followed by many years of slow recovery. What's next for Rockieand her family are a lot of difficult choices and unexpected expenses that would have been a strain to cover as the owner of a humble retail shop and will be even harder to cover as the former owner of a humble retail shop.
Most people who start businesses like Moonfyredo so because it's their passion, not because it's the best way for them to maximize their income. If something should happen and they're suddenly unable to continue, there is no soft landing. Rockieisn't able to go on disability and collect a paycheck while figuring out how to navigate her new normal and there's no such thing as severance pay, vacation payouts, or unemployment benefits for a small business owner.
One day you are the driving force behind one of the longest running retail shops in a thriving downtown and without warning, that is taken away from you. You're left with nothing all while you're working to regain your speech after having brain surgery.