It’s been rather quiet around here. But in honour of Bell Let’s Talk Day I’m coming on here to encourage you to talk to one another about mental health. House and Home wrote a lovely little feature about what I’m up to these days (hint, it’s related to art and mental health); I’d be delighted if you checked it out! But most importantly, if you’re struggling, please tell someone. If you’re in crisis, call 911 or have a friend or loved one take you to the emergency department.
Here are some great resources put together by my friends over at Jack.org:
If a photographer approached me and said, I am offering you any type of photo session you want of you and your family, anywhere in the world, this, right here, is what I would choose. Every time. Us, at home, making dinner, wiping tears, catching up on snuggles.
I’d wake up on the day of our shoot and not give any more thought to what I’m wearing than I would on any other day (I readily admit that this will take effort!); I wouldn’t clean; I wouldn’t tell the photographer to stop shooting when it was less than perfect or the kids started acting out; I’d sit and have a conversation with the photographer like an old friend, and even invite her to sit down to dinner with us.
I wouldn’t tell my kids they can’t wear this or that; I wouldn’t stop them from running through the water from the gardening hose mid-shoot. I’d explore with them. I’d follow their lead. I’d take a little longer kissing them, laughing with them, hugging them. I wouldn’t tell them to look at the camera “or else.” To smile, “or else.” I’d say hey, my friend is going to come over to take some photos; be curious with her if you like; help her see beauty through your eyes; ask her to see the photos, or help take them, if you want; you don’t have to do anything special or be anyone but you. You can even say no. Maybe she can teach you a little about her art. Maybe you can teach her a little about yours.
I’d be nervous about the camera on us, no doubt, but I’d remind myself over and over to pay attention to the abundance of gifts all around me, and give myself permission to indulge in gratitude for the here and now and the immense privileges I enjoy in this life. But I’d also be thinking about the future and how when I look back on it all, these are the every day moments that I’ll want to remember most: the tears; the grind; the outtakes; the impromptu walks; the meltdowns; the tiny running shoes; the baseball hats and batman masks; all of it.
Thank you Marissa and family for allowing me to do just that.
Writing a post about Robyn is impossible, because you have to just meet her, and be in her presence to know how wonderful she is.
What I can quite easily put into words is that she is an incredibly talented and generous fellow business owner here in Guelph. I feel so lucky to know her. And luckier still that her storefront (Blooms and Flora) and my office are around the corner from one another. I must admit that I pop in to her shop multiple times a week just to breathe in the fresh scent of flowers and be reminded that there is a community of kickass women making a go of it right here in our little city; it’s seriously life-giving just to be near her and her crew.
When I showed up to her house to photograph the newest member of the Scott family, big brother Owen was waiting with a huge smile on his face at their front window. I had toyed with the idea of taking some video during their session and surprising them with a little film, and this is the moment, seeing his face pressed up against that window, when I decided, yes. Yes to remembering this day. Yes to capturing this sweet moment in time, intimately knowing that the reality of being an entrepreneur with two kids isn’t easy; yes to honouring this fleeting time of life, knowing that there are moments when you wonder if you can really do it all, but that inside the insanity and chaos are pockets of messy and wonderful joy.