Twelve years... this year my first child will turn twelve years old and in just twelve more years, my baby girl will graduate from high school. There is one thing that they tell you over and over again when you become a parent, "it goes so fast." And yet, for some reason, the advice to enjoy every moment is taken with a grain of salt and before you know it entire years have passed by...because it just goes SO fast. In twelve years I have witnessed the growth of a newborn baby boy into a delightful young person with deep thoughts about the world. Now he is about to embark on his biggest jump towards independence... the teenage years. Good gracious it seems like yesterday when the nurse put him in my arms. I think about how quickly that time went and I look at my youngest child and it smacks me like a ton of bricks... in the same fleeting span of time, she will be graduating from high school. "Enjoy every moment, it goes so fast." Now I find myself at a very peculiar crossroads I just never saw coming.
Moving, while a bit painful in the beginning, has given me a new perspective on my life. It's almost as if a pause button was pushed and I had a chance to breathe, step away and evaluate my life. It has given me a chance to think about what is truly important, but more importantly what isn't. Time is important... time with them, time with my husband, our time together. Maybe it's the slowdown of the South, but good gracious...Sundays are for God and family. For the greater part of the last twelve years I've been an at home mom in the trenches raising kids... and that has been something that has brought me so much joy. I've been there for them and that is truly all that I ever wanted to be, and it is enough. Maybe society gives it very little value, but I honestly don't care. Not caring has been a wonderful gift.
I love photography with all my heart. The images that you see in this post are the images that make me happy, so happy. They are for me, and us. Just us. Perhaps it's my way of enjoying every moment...because it is going SO fast. It's documentation of the fleeting time that we have been blessed as parents to raise these wonderful human beings. It's this time together that is more important to me than anything else. It's for that reason that I have decided to suspend my photography business indefinitely. For the last four years, I spent much of it building up my own part-time photography business. Truthfully, there is nothing part-time about starting your own business. It's a ton of hard work. While rewarding, it has taken a significant amount of time and sacrifice. The thought of having to build all that up again in a new place is daunting.
I want to spend more time with them. I want to volunteer in their schools. I want to be fully present when they are home. I want weekends to be for family. I want my photography to be just for me and us. It doesn't mean that I will put my camera down. It just means that my focus has shifted... ha ha, see what I did there? It's what I want in my heart of hearts more than anything else... because I know that twelve years passes quickly, too quickly. I will blink and they will be gone starting their own amazing chapters. I'm grateful that until that day comes, I can be here for them fully present in the moment, right where I need to be.