I Just Wanted to Say Hello…

So here we are on day 1.  First of all, let me just say that it is not actually day 1.  Have you ever used WordPress before?  Let’s just say there were lots of hours on the couch and plenty of squinty eyes.  So, if we can just pretend that it hasn’t taken me six weeks to get this website up and running we can call it day 1.  Agreed?

So where were we?  Oh yeah, I’m writing my first post.

I suppose you’d like to know why I’ve decided to start this blog.  Well, you see, I’m not quite sure I fully understand the reason myself, yet.  That seems to be a constant theme in my life as of late.  When I was growing up I had a pretty solid track to follow.  I knew I always wanted to go to college and had a major lined up since junior high.  I went to college, followed my dreams and ended up in a career I had always planned on.  All the while I enjoyed the outdoors, dreamt up my next adventures, managed to do a few of them and although I really didn’t know what my future held I thought I had a fairly decent picture of it.  Don’t we all when we’re 22?

Well… I’m sure you see where this is heading.  Life happens, things change and suddenly you have no idea what the future holds.  Marriage, children, a move overseas; it all tends to be very disruptive to “the plan”.  So now, it’s about finding a new one.  The truth is, it’s been about 7 years of searching.

This whole motherhood thing, it’s hard.  Oh, and don’t forget I’m a wife too.  And that creative side of me, the one that barely gets exercised when I remember to bring my camera with me on a hike with my kids?  Well, it’s rusty.  And then there’s the mission, you know the one, to save the world.  Well, that kinda took a backseat when I started trying to save my children. Don’t get me started on the horrors of electrical sockets, tile floors, solid food and deadly bacteria.  (Okay, so I kinda always let them eat dirt, so much for the bacteria.)

The point is: Identity.  What’s mine?  And what am I doing with my life?

Not too long ago, I started an instagram account.  I know, so behind the times.  I’ve always said that photography was my first love, but I’ve let it take a back seat to all the new loves in my life (probably the right decision).  However, when I did that I let a bit of myself disappear, which was probably the wrong decision.  It took me a really long time to figure out how to make them both work.

So admittedly, this blog is a bit selfish.  It’s a place for me to post my photography, a reason to get out and shoot.  An opportunity to flex my creative muscles and show off my adventures with our kids.  It’s a space to think, to formulate sentences that won’t be interrupted at the dinner table by inquiring minds.  But I promise, it’s not all for me.  I hope it can be for you, too.

Its taken me a long time to truly realize for myself that raising kids is worth it.  Please don’t hear me wrong when I say that.  It’s just that even though in the back of my mind I always knew I wanted a family, I had a lot of things I was going to do first.  Save the world, remember?

I can never forget a conversation I had with a good friend when my eldest was just a few months old.  I was struggling with feeling stuck, like I wasn’t doing anything with my life.  (Meanwhile we were living out an adventure in the Caribbean, so I don’t know how I could have felt that way, but I did.  Oh yeah, PPD.  More on that later.)  Her response was encouraging and kind but I couldn’t hear it.  She said the greatest thing I could ever do is to raise my daughter to grow up and do great things.

My pride was hurt.  I wanted to do great things.

7 years later, however, I can see it.  We have done so many amazing things and there is still so much to do.  I might still struggle with identity, because what mother doesn’t, but I know I’m on the right track.

So, in the following stories of our adventures, both past and present, I hope you will find inspiration and encouragement.  This raising kids thing, it’s worth it.  This life of adventure, worth doing.

I hope you will see it all as a worthwhile endeavor.