As I catch up on some blogging with the amazing help of my friend, Amy, I begin with Darden and Ron’s summer wedding. They were married in New Albany among loving friends and family. Ron is the New Albany High School football coach, and was blessed to have the team present for the wedding. During the exchange of rings, Darden and Ron presented Ron’s daughter, Molly Addison, with a ring of her own. It was such a special day, and I’m so honored to have been a part of it.
“I kind of wish we’d stop obsessing about improving ourselves all the time. I’m simply suggesting that maybe you can show up for life as you are.” Glennon Melton (excerpt from her Our Sacred Scared post)
Call me naive, but I truly believe that the world would be a much better place if we could all learn to love one another and treat one another with respect — and I believe that begins with learning to love ourselves. We live in a terrifying world of comparison with often unrealistic expectations. Sometimes we get so caught up in what we should be doing that we completely neglect the joy of now. We fail to be. We fail to live. We fail to love.
For example, I fell off my 18 month gym wagon this past fall. I beat myself up for it every day knowing that I should be working out and not sleeping late and eating Doritos and ice cream like my life depended on it. Finally, someone asked me if I couldn’t just accept that perhaps my body is trying to tell me that it needs a break. Indeed this was a concept that I blissfully accepted.
During my six month hiatus I ate loooots of sweets, breads, and fried foods. It was amazing. I’m a cheap date, too. Just give me a Totino’s pizza or a fried pizza stick and some no sugar added Kroger chocolate ice cream with Hershey syrup, and I’m good to go. (Yeah, I realize that doesn’t make sense, but the no sugar added tastes better to me for some reason.)
Fast forward to last month, and let’s get real.
- I’m rotating the same few articles of clothing because putting on jeans is beginning to resemble the early scenes of Dazed & Confused. And god help me if they are fresh out of the dryer.
- Lethargy holds me captive every afternoon, and I’m resorting to coffee for help. (I only like my coffee in the unhealthiest of ways: the ever elusive Frappuccino with whip cream. So if I’m drinking real, grown-up coffee, you know it’s serious.)
- I’m not as mentally sharp as I had been. I haven’t dipped into a depression or anything like that, but things just haven’t been as clear as they are when I’m exercising regularly.
- As much as I don’t want to admit it publicly, I was extra pitiful while walking around the Museum of Natural History in November — I had to stop in the middle of a flight of stairs to catch my breath. I’m not proud, but I can’t very well be ashamed of it either.
Those are a few of the most glaring consequences of not exercising regularly. Now, this post is not about exercising. I don’t enjoy reading people’s gym posts anymore than you do. I’m just using that as an example of how I have the perfect recipe for hating myself because I’ve cooked this meal before. I’ve beat myself up for this time and time again.
Back to Glennon’s quote above — this seems like a perfect oxymoron: stop obsessing about improving ourselves and show up for life as you are. Neither she nor I are saying to stop improving yourself. I’m a big believer in self-improvement. I’m naturally a very resistant person to all that is good for me. Historically, I’m blissfully skilled in the art of self-sabotage and convincing myself that complacency is preferred and good for me.
Therefore, I constantly work to find balance and love myself regardless of whether I actually achieved balance today.
- I work to find balance between eating all the foods and not being able to enjoy a meal for fear of exceeding my recommended caloric intake to fit back into my “skinny” jeans.
- I work to find balance between working until midnight (and/or continuing to work from home until well past midnight) and going home before six.
- I work to find balance between eating out every meal of the week and cooking some meals at home.
- I work to find balance between being the photographer/accountant/media coordinator/project manager/office manager who works with her husband all day and being a loving wife at night (regardless of what events transpired at work — If you work with your spouse, you understand).
- I work to find balance between spending every day with friends and family and setting aside some alone time.
- I work to find balance between going to bed before 10pm and staying up until 4am.
- I work to find balance between sharing too much and sharing just enough. (This post may be teetering…)
- I work to find balance with the secular world we live in and the time with God that I crave — that I need.
Internal peace was once defined to me as being able to be the calm in the midst of the storm surrounding you. Life is typically a lot smoother when we’re positive. It’s not always perfect — Murphy’s law is often inevitable. But I find that when I’m not angry at myself for being a failure at ______, I’m able to separate myself from the storm much easier.
If God created me in His own image, am I also angry at Him for being a failure as well? As a square is a rectangle yet a rectangle cannot be a square, God is never angry at us for failure. I can at least find peace in that. I can find peace in trying. I can find peace that God loves me no matter what. And He loves you no matter what, too. Let’s learn to love ourselves as God loves us.
“But God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Romans 5:8
“We loved because He first loved us.” 1 John 4:16
“To acquire wisdom is to love oneself; people who cherish understanding will prosper.” Proverbs 19:8
We’ve been very blessed in our lives to experience many, many awesome things. It seems that lately we’ve been constantly on the go. September was an especially busy month. It was exciting, fun, memorable and a little bit exhausting.
If you don’t already know, earlier this year I took on the job of media coordinator and project manager at the Mabus Agency in addition to my accounting duties and photography. I am still booking weddings and portrait sessions regularly. 2014 wedding planning is already in full swing. So, if you know anyone getting married, send them my way!
Sometimes I get to photograph fun, non-portrait things. I love concerts and dance photography, and now I can add Flugtag photography to my list of favorites! Blue Delta Jeans Co. is a Mabus Agency client based in Tupelo/Oxford that specializes in designing and making custom jeans. This year they were picked from hundreds of applicants to participate in the Red Bull Flugtag event in Dallas, TX.
In 1992, Red Bull began hosting Flugtag events around the globe including the United States since 2002. Flugtag is German for “flight day”. The Red Bull Flugtag is an event where competitors create homemade size and weight-limited human-powered flying machines launched off a 30 ft pier into water. Teams are judged on creativity, skit performance and flight distance.
This year included a record-breaking 258 ft flight by a team of aerospace engineers at the Long Beach, CA event. However, the majority of flights are short-lived, but they sure are fun! You can watch Blue Delta’s flight here.
I was fortunate enough to secure a press pass at the event attended by 92,000 people. For the first half of the flights I sat at the water’s edge. During our flight I was able to ride on a Pontoon and photograph from the water. I hope you enjoy the pictures below! Be sure to call Blue Delta for your next pair of jeans!
When Emmitt’s mom, Molly, told me how precious he is I could never have imagined he would be this adorable! Long, curly, blond locks, big blue eyes and dimples, oh my! Click on the “view full post” link below to see more pictures, and tell me I’m wrong!
Somehow Allison’s bridals from last year were never blogged. I would say this is unfortunate, but I’m so happy to revisit these photos. Her family has a huge farm in West Point where we took these pictures. Her beauty and elegance is classic and one of a kind! Click the “view full post” link below to see all of my favorites from her session.
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