A woman with passion is how you would describe Carren Smith. As life goes, it takes you on a journey, but Carren’s life has been more of a roller coaster ride. Carren shares how she founded Spirit Hive after losing her partner to suicide and fighting for her own life after surviving the 2002 Bali bombings. Carren shares 5 ways not-for-profit organisation Spirit Hive could have been her life raft. Blinded by grief, Carren admittedly blamed herself for the death of her partner of eight years. She had successfully and quickly progressed up the corporate ladder in Sydney, until she was the general manager of the world’s largest recruitment organisation at the ripe age of 29. “Everything I have done in my life, I have done out of pure passion and curiosity of desire, which I think has been a big part to my recipe of success over the years,” says Carren. From here, however, her life took an unexpected turn after tragically losing her partner to suicide. She was totally unaware of any problems and totally unprepared for the devastating loss. “I didn’t have a clue. He was in the movie industry and we had been together for about eight years,” she says. “He had gone away to make a movie and when he came back he was very different. I thought it was a problem with me and that he didn’t love me anymore and he had met someone else.” After her partner passed away, devastation washed over her. The next 12 months became a journey of depression and pain as she dealt with the turmoil. Carren subsequently made a decision that she too would end her own life, in Bali, on the anniversary of her partner’s death. Her two best friends boarded the plane with her, unaware of her intentions. “I had already taken my life before I flew to Bali… emotionally,” explains Carren.
“It never even occurred to me the pain I was going to put my family through and my friends.”On the 12th October, 2002, Carren and her girlfriends went for a night out at the tourist district of Kuta, to the Sari Club. The events that followed completely changed the direction of her life. In the following hours, three bombs went off in the district, killing more than 200 people, including 88 Australians.