I know, I know- It’s not too often you see family sessions in my portfolio, and it’s not because I don’t enjoy them, but truthfully, when I first started this business, it wasn’t where I saw my best work (own worst critic here). As a result, it wasn’t where I found myself the most comfortable or confident and so I didn’t continue to invest my efforts here. After feeling out many avenues, it’s no secret I’ve established my niche with couples, but with a cute little almost 11-month-old at home, motherhood and family give me a connection with a new market that I didn’t previously share. I’ve been using this “slow season” (which is so not slow anymore), to really stretch and challenge myself—gone are the days of letting fear cripple me, right out the window with the days of making decisions without the assistance of my heart and what feels right.
Facebook has this funny way of connecting you with people that you may otherwise have never known. I mean some people I’m pretty sure I’ve known forever by learning so much about them from social media and mutual friends, yet I’ve never actually met. My older sister Tiffany had her third son in December. I don’t know if she’d appreciate me saying this, but anyone with even just one or two kids can understand that kids aren’t always cute little cuddlers. Tiff knew she wanted more kids, but with two (ridiculously cute) crazy boys, she just wasn’t quite ready for number three. Though, God always has His own, much better plan- right? Nonetheless, she was scared, nervous and down-right not ready.
Fast forward to the end of her pregnancy, and I believe that no matter how many times one has birthed a child, you still kind of fear the process. Tiff was nervous, but ready and excited. She had him in the middle of the night, and if you’ve ever heard anything about any of our birth stories- our babies essentially fly out, and Micah was no exception. He spent his first few days in the NICU, and that was hard on all of us just wanting to meet and snuggle the newbie, though, especially hard on Tiff and Josh. I remember when she had Amanda as a familiar face, being Micah’s NICU nurse for most of his time there, and I think we all felt a little sense of relief just for the sake of some familiarity. And I don’t think it’s any coincidence that I found myself in a position feeling like God was using me to bless her family during their own challenges.
Amanda and Andrew have a sweet little boy, Gavin, and Amanda is nearing the end of her pregnancy with their second child. Andrew serves in the military and recently found out with extremely little notice that he would soon be deploying. I’m not going to sit here and act like for one second I understand the sacrifice this requires from either side of the situation: Andrew having to leave his family for a period of time, missing out on the birth of their child, and Amanda needing to be wife, mom, homemaker, and the one to just keep things afloat in his absence. She reached out to me wanting last minute maternity and family pictures, considering the circumstances. I don’t know what I expected, but the whole session I was just amazed at how everything felt seamless and the strength that they showed. They laughed, they loved, they parented, they just did the norm, and you’d never have known the challenge and fear they are facing. This, no doubt, was God’s way of putting things into perspective for me. I wont bore you with the demons I’ve been facing in my own life, but I’ll tell you that they pale in comparison to this chapter in their life, and I was overdue for a healthy dose of perspective. Andrew and Amanda feel blessed by me, but they have no idea that it’s me who’s been blessed by them.
If you get a second, will you join with me in prayer for their family? Each and everyday we should be praying for our military. They are truly sacrificing so much for all of us to enjoy our everyday freedoms that we often take for granted. Hug a service member today, tell them you’re thankful for them- I guarantee you’ll be equally blessed.
Thanks for following along on this little dream of mine.