I love photography.
I love getting to know my clients, telling a piece of their story through my lens.
Capturing a moment in time. Freezing memories. Capturing beauty in the grand, and in the simple. I love finding the light. The hidden treasure troves of nature. Admiring God’s creation while location scouting. All of it brings me joy.
But by the beginning of 2023 I was ready to walk away. Not because I wanted to be done with photography, but because my soul was heavy. My life was unbalanced, and my family and my spiritual life were paying the price.
I had been in hardcore hustle mode since 2019.
By 2020 the business I had been trying to grow since my senior year of high-school in 2014 finally started to truly take off.
And it was a HUGE blessing. Truly.
George had been working for a water well company with my dad and uncle for two years (as a clarification my dad and uncle had been there much longer). At the end of 2019 my husbands boss announced he was ready to get out of the business and gave my dad and uncle the option of buying it out from him…which they did!
It was the beginning of a crazy, exciting, adventure as far as my husband’s job went, but he was making a much lower income at the time. With our family growing rapidly the extra income was, quite literally, a Godsend.
As my business was growing, so was the company my husband worked for and he received several raises.
After we welcome our third child, we saved like crazy and were able to do some renovations to our tiny 2 bedroom home, sell it, and move to a 2200 square foot double wide on family land that has been a tremendous blessing to our family.
But it was around this time the heaviness set in. I’m a very goal driven person, and I had taken on work to my breaking point.
In addition to serving my own wedding couples and doing the occasional portraits on the side, I had a thriving private editing gig going on and I was editing all the weddings for 10 other full time wedding photographers (In 2021 I edited something like 171 weddings).
I worked through nap time. I got up early in the mornings, and I regularly stayed up late into the night working while my children slept. Every once in a while if I got really behind I would have my sisters watch the kids for a day while I caught up.
I was determined I wasn’t going to let my working affect my kids and the amount of time I had for them
Spoiler alert it did anyway.
I found myself constantly exhausted, snippy, and short, and stressed. I struggled keeping up with the house. My very supportive husband grew tired of me constantly needing to edit while we tried to watch a movie together, or choosing to stay up instead of going to bed a reasonable hour.
I still read my bible and did bible studies, but I found myself always rushing. Never truly taking the time to soak any of it in.
One day I woke up and realized my life didn’t look anything like I wanted it to, or that God would want it to.
I had let something that started out as a blessing for my family start to slowly take over our whole lives. To get in the way of my relationship with my children, my husband, and most importantly of all with God.
And suddenly I wanted to run in the opposite direction. To walk away and not look back.
But first I would have to get my ducks in a row. With 5 amazing couples booked for 2023 I stopped taking inquiries
I gave notice to all but two of the photographers that I edit for that after the 2022 wedding I would no longer be able to take them as clients, and I planned to phase out and walk away.
At the start of 2023 my goal was to get my priorities straight,
My relationship with God, my marriage, spending time with my children, serving God through music, my kids education, and fellowship with our friends and family had to take precedence.
So I began focusing on those things.
One thing I feel like God has really been teaching me over and over this year (in all aspects of my life) is balance. I tend to have a personality that goes all in. This past year has really helped to me to pull back and look at the big picture of life. How to prioritize and manage my time in a way that honors God and that is purposeful in building the kind of life I want to live.
I am not perfect…not by a long shot. There is still a long way to go, but I’ve come so very far over the past 9 months. I truly feel like I have learned the boundaries I need to put in place for myself so that I have a healthy happy home and spiritual life, while still serving my clients well and continuing to tell their stories through photography. I have limited capacity, so I will be focusing on quality over quantity and taking on fewer clients.
And now here I find myself excited for the future of my business once more. I’m learning each day how to be more intentional in every area of my life, business included, and I truly believe I will be able to provide an even better experience for the clients I take on with this renewed sense of balance.
I am so very grateful to all the wonderful clients I’ve had over the years up until now, and I’m so looking forward to the next generation of couples, families, and seniors that I will get to meet and tell their stories.