I am not just an artist. I am a wife, mother, daughter, friend, advocate, baker, gardener, painter, fiber artist, dog mom and more. I am a real person. Something which I work hard to make sure you all know before you head in for your first session. I understand having struggles, anxieties, being weird (trust me I'm REALLY WEIRD), not being accepted as you are, feeling unworthy... all the things that make us HUMAN.
I always joked before having my children that I was a busy-body, that I struggle with nothing to do. I never thought I would ever become a stay at home mom. I tease my husband now that I would have less to do if I went back into the regular business world- that it would be a vacation of sorts. Now as a Jane of all trades I always have something I need or want to do, typically surrounded by picking up children, making meals, cleaning my home.
While a lot of people will recognize that last bit in their everyday lives, add in the requirements of running a business. For me it looks like this: Have scheduled session(s), edit and share sneak peeks the next day, post to all the social medias, work marketing, answer emails & texts, edit, edit some more, schedule reveals, edit some more after existential crisis over editing style, have reveal appointments, order client products, deliver or mail client products, prep for next session(s). Once you intermingle that with the usual home life, especially with three young, rambunctious boys, it seems like sleep is a foreign concept and relaxation is just a myth.
This life is NOT for the faint of heart - the whole work-life balance thing doesn't exist. Even though I tell myself that I'm going to dedicate certain hours and days to work... I really just do it all the time between everything else. One of my most intrusive reminders of my own humanity lately was losing two people and nearly losing our beloved furry friend in the course of a week. I had sessions to do, I had loss to grieve, I had children to care for and honestly- I stopped taking care of myself. I didn't matter in the short term because there was so much else to do- sincerely, January was shit this year for me. February came, but not fast enough, and now I'm too tired to even enjoy getting back to "normal."
So the next time you feel like nobody gets you or understands what you're going through- know that you aren't alone. I have probably been in your shoes at some point and I'm happy to remind you that it's ok to be human and not be perfect... I'm certainly not.
Images of Miss Cali, our in house Hair & Makeup Artist.