We began the process of adding a child to our family through adoption in 2014.
In total, we had four failed adoption attempts. I remember thinking in 2014 that I would need to step back from my business and almost made an announcement, but thank goodness I did not, because during this long wait I photographed almost 500 additional babies, made countless friends, and funded our daughter’s adoption.
Last year was my best year in business, so the thought of slowing down is incredibly painful. I love, love what I do. I am incredibly proud of what I have created, from a $120 camera that I bought from a former redskins cheerleader to a full time career and a name and style that is known and recognized.
Having said that, I am going to have to slow way down in 2019. I am not closing, but I am definitely restructuring and looking at how I can best balance my family with my love of my business. For those who’ve already secured their retainers, there is no change. For those considering getting on the schedule, my business model may change after maternity leave to better meet my family’s needs. I’ve been prioritizing my business since 2010, but it is time that I readjust and put my family first.
When I left my daughter’s orphanage there was a group of kiddos being led back to their cribs, where they will stay without affection, stimulation and often even without adequate nutrition and basic care. Their faces are burned in my mind, and when I look at our “one more” that is home and thriving, it’s impossible to not see that we perhaps have room still for more kids. As we contemplate our next move, it’s also impossible to not recognize that I cannot forever operate at 100% in all areas of my life. This mom/photographer/wife/business owner/volunteer is tired.
I am sitting with this understanding, and making peace with it. I am excitedly looking forward to the sessions I have scheduled this year, and also acknowledging that it is okay if I choose to pour all of my energy into those and not stack my calendar full. If, instead of racing into my studio every Friday-Sunday, I am going on adventures with my family. That it is okay to want everything, but sometimes everything is actually less than what you are used to.
Watching our daughter transform before our eyes? Worth every moment of the struggle.