Friday, September 21, 2012

Happy Friday

Do you love Fridays or dread them? I admit I enjoy the weekdays...a quiet house during the day makes me giddy...I can work without interruptions and can enjoy my latte without the constant bickering that happens around this house when everyone is home. So yes, I enjoy Mondays. And Fridays leave me in a panic to get everything done before the weekend starts and I'm allowed little time to myself. (Did I mention how often these kids like eat? three meals a day...and then some...:) I'm always in the kitchen! )

If you read the blog on a regular basis, you know what a week I've had. But then I came here and poured out my heart...and got so much more back from you all! I cried a lot of tears that day...I felt more connected with you and suddenly knew I was not alone.  I was surrounded by love and friendships from you all, my virtual friends! Thank you from the bottom of my heart!! 

I want to share a few of the emails I received. I will not publish the names of the sweet girls who wrote them...but I am compelled to share them. They touched me more than you can imagine!

"Wow -- I wasn't expecting to read that from Savvy…

In fact, I've actually stopped reading all photography blogs as of late. Not sure why I happened to open the one from Savvy this time. But I'm so glad I did.  
I had deactivated my Facebook pages. Stopped reading blogs. I don't go on Pinterest anymore. Can't handle the constant influx of awesomeness when I'm not feeling so awesome as a photographer anymore. It's just so much pressure bombarding me from so many different angles.  The ideas should be inspirational -- I know that's their genuine intent -- but instead I feel defeated and inferior.  Plus, I have more important issues to get through -- my number one job -- being a mom.  And lately it's become harder and harder and harder.
I knew I always wanted to be a mom. I would be the best mom. The mom who would give the best hugs and make the best cookies.  When I found out I was having a little girl, I was absolutely elated. I dreamt of mother-daughter moments of laughter and ease. Never did I envision the 8 years of daily battles and power struggles and defiance and anger.  It confuses me.  I, too, have read so many books. Your Sensitive Child. Maybe, but it's much more than simply that. Your Spirited Child.  Hmm… Spirited seems like a super kind word for a child who kicks doors and threatens to hit her mother if she doesn't give her a specific unreasonable demand.  Scream-Free Parenting. An amazing book and personal favorite, but how am I supposed to hold it together when she pushes and pushes and pushes me beyond the brink? I am a person who can be cut off by a driver on the highway and not have a flicker of road rage to be found -- and yet this child of mine knows how to bring forth rage in me that I never knew existed.  It is a frightening thing to discover about oneself. A part of me I wished didn't exist. 

Although heart wrenching, your story about your son encouraged me. Parenting is such an endless challenge -- and it's one that I realized we do not face alone. It is so incredibly refreshing to hear your honesty.  I had gotten tired of all the perfection that was presented online, which is why I had to turn down all of the volume across the board.  I had to live my own life and not get caught up in "friends'" glamourous Facebook posts or feel pressured by rockin' shoots of local photographers. But I'm realizing that there is no reason to live life in a turtle shell. There are experiences to share. Wisdom to learn.  Whether it be pretty things or parenting woes, there is a world of support and inspiration out there just waiting.  It's all how we take it. I enjoyed my social media break, but your email brought me back. Thank you, Savvy."

I cried when I read her email...she is living my life! But the little girl she describes is pretty much my six year old yikes for me! A son who has so many issues and a six year old with a temper she can't control and who, as this gal wrote, "brings forth rage in me I never knew existed". We are all living in our own drama behind closed doors...but we just don't talk about it! Why? Because we must act happy...because we prayed for years to have a baby and we must not ever admit that sometimes it sucks. We would seem so ungrateful for such a blessing...when in reality, we wonder what we did to deserve this.

Here's another email that I wanted to share....  

"Well you did it again!  I love when you open up and let us know what is on your mind.  Everything you said is just like what has been on my mind for the last month.
It is the worst feeling in the world feeling like you are failing as a mother and I think if more people would open up and be honest we would be able to have more support than we could ever ask for.  The problem is women are so afraid of what other people are going to think of them.
Kudos to you for being brave enough to spill what is going on inside of you!
Kids are born who they are I have no doubt about that I have two boys and they are night and day and I raised them both the same aside from the over protectiveness of the first child!  I went way overboard there but I believe they are who they are and all we can do is our best to lead them in the right direction.
Photography is killing me inside, I want it sooo bad but at what expense?  My kids are suffering I am suffering I am miserable but don't know how to get out or at least make it work so we can all be happy.  I had no idea this could be so life consuming and yes the money sucks!  mostly because I don't value my work enough to charge what I should.  What am I afraid of?  Rejection? failure?  You name it I am afraid of it.  But looking at my little boy tears running down his face because he has to go to the babysitter so I can work is heartbreaking!  This is not how it was supposed to be.  I thought I would be able to be a photographer and be a full time mom.
I am at such a loss I don't even know where to turn.
But your words really made me feel like I am not in this alone.
Thank you for sharing from your heart!
Keep on keeping on and just know that you are the best Mom those kids could ever ask for!"

So people...we are not alone...we are all feeling this way at times. Thank you for showing me it's ok to open up...that you are here to listen and offer your support and prayers! 
Thank you!

Now I must share a little fun for the day...I was ask to write an article for another blog about decorating with portraits...and I wanted to share with you all. The blog, Kristen Duke Photography, is having a 5 day series: Taking Family Portraits–from beginning to end and she ask me to do a post on decorating... one of my favorite things! You get to see a peek inside my house and what's gracing my walls. 
Thanks Kristen! 

Just a side note: everything looks so good in pictures...but behind it all, we have the same issues and difficulties...maybe that's why I love my portraits so much, because all of the "problems" do not appear in a photograph...just sweet memories! Have a good day!