Hi friends!! Well, it’s no secret I’ve been gone from my business quite a bit recently. I feel like I owe y’all an explanation, so I’ll start from the beginning …I took a little break for a couple of months over the winter time to focus on my family and try to help Leslie with the transition of going to school full time, and as a family we needed some time to adjust to Nick’s new job, which has him gone a lot more than we were used to. We are so excited and happy with his new job, but like with all change, it’s taken a lot to get used to. Leslie decided pretty early on that she did not like (in fact hate is the exact words she used) kindergarten. She was used to being home with her mommy and brother, and now she was gone 35+ hours a week to school, and she missed her old routine like crazy. So that is what led to the beginning of my little hiatus. Next I’ll explain a little more about what’s been going on more recently.
This past February, my dad was hospitalized for the first time in his entire life. He ended up having a 6 day hospital stay and surgery. Two weeks to the day of his surgery, I find myself in the hospital having the exact same surgery done, and also the lucky recipient of a 6 day hospital stay. Same hospital, same floor of the hospital, same surgeon, etc. Dad and I have always been very close, but we didn’t realize we were that “in tune” with each other-ha! Anyway, dad’s recovery went great and he felt better than ever. This is where our stories become drastically different. My recovery was and even still is, absolutely horrible. I had lots of complications, including infiltrated iv’s in my arms that turned into blood clots in one arm and a horrible, painful infection in the other arm. While dealing with that, I began having a horrible time breathing, felt like an elephant was on my chest, and had a sense of “impending doom.” Went to my doctor (my 5th post-op visit in a two week period), and he tried to diagnose it as a panic attack. Thank God, literally, my dad was with me to be my advocate, and spoke up and reminded the doctor that in the hospital my oxygen had dropped dangerously low, and that he did not believe it was a panic attack causing my current condition. The doctor ordered a CT Scan of my lungs to see if there was an issue there, but assured me he really though it was just anxiety. What I found out later that day, was that I had a pulmonary embolism aka a blood clot in my lung. When the nurse called to give me the diagnosis and give me the name of the medication they were starting me on immediately, I really had no idea what it all meant. I just knew that I felt absolutely horrible, but it took me a while to grasp just how serious it was.
The following days, weeks, and now months, have been followed with a lot of doctors appointments, including a hem-oc (hematology oncologist) to diagnose why, at the age of 35, I developed such a serious life threatening condition. Basically, they still don’t really know for sure. I still have some more specialist appointments coming up but for the most part I’m on the mend and thankful for each day that the good Lord has given me. I’ve shot 8 weddings since my diagnosis on March 9 (which also happened to be just a few days before my 35th birthday! Happy Birthday to me, a near fatal blood clot! Ha!), and about a dozen family sessions. This year is definitely a little slower than my previous 6 years in business, but I have no doubt that it was all God’s plan because he knew I would need this time to heal both physically and emotionally. As horrible as I have physically felt, it has also been a very stressful, anxious, and exhausting time for me emotionally as I process it all and the “what if’s.” During this time, in the past month, my grandmother has been placed on hospice care. I have spent a large portion of time helping my mother take care of her, and also allowing myself to go through the grieving process of watching my grandmother in her last days.
I have also never been more thankful to have a wonderful associate photographer, Emily, who works along side me on most wedding days, and really has become a great friend the last 4 wedding seasons. I have no doubt that God placed her directly in my business and my life at a time that he knew I would need someone to lend a helping hand and someone I could trust and rely on. I’ve never formally introduced Emily on my website, but I am so thankful for her as both an associate and a friend!
If you made it this far, kudos to you 😉 I wanted to give a little insight into what’s been going on lately, because I’ve had some people wondering if I was still shooting, why I’ve been absent more than usual, and just what the heck was going on! So, that’s the story. I’m still in business, I’m still taking new clients, and I’m excited about the direction of the business. This year I’ve started shooting more film alongside my digital work, and I’m absolutely in love with it. And as always, I am so thankful for my wonderful clients, who are more like friends than clients. I am so blessed to call this my job, and I truly love getting to capture your stories, whether they are during a family portrait session, a wedding, or even birth photography. Thank you for letting me and my camera have a glimpse into your lives.
And because no post is complete without a picture, here’s a shot of myself and Emily at a recent wedding, shot on Portra 400 film(the aprons are to hold the film and the film backs, just in case you were wondering 😉 ).