One of my goals in 2020 was to share a photo or series of photos each week that meant a lot to me, and that were born out of pure spontaneity. Most of my friends know I always have a camera on me and I see pretty much every moment as a photo opportunity. I want to really savor it all and have a permanent tangible, easily accessible copy of it all. You can see all the entries in this weekly project by clicking HERE
This set of photos was completely spontaneous and have so much meaning to me. Taylor was with me and I had just shot a wedding out in the country near Monroe, GA. It was May 2017. She had her cap and gown in the car (because graduation was coming up), was wearing pretty sandals and a dress since we were at a wedding, and we were leaving the venue. The driveway was long, winding, and hilly.
As we were topping a hill, I stopped the car and exclaimed "OH MY GOD!! Put on your cap and gown and run up that hill!!"
Taylor was a real trooper, trekked up the hill, and knew I was in one of my 'zones'....
When she was on her cue, I saw the perfect moment with SO MUCH MEANING.
Here is this 17 year old girl, who made it to this point. When all the odds were stacked against her, when the recipe called for complete and total disaster, she defied it. She had every reason in the world to throw in the towel, give up, call it quits, crumble, self destruct, and wallow in self pity, and believe me, she attempted several times, but had a united strong front in her family that kept steering her back on track.... Losing her dad instantly at 15 years old, being shuffled around from schools, losing her home, friends, and her footing....
This photo captured everything.
She faced the dark and stormy clouds, determined to prove everyone wrong, and succeeded.
I love you so much and I am so proud to be your big sister.
As most of my readers know, 2015 was a very difficult year for us all. Losing our dad, staying strong for Taylor, and pressing on helped me grow into a more compassionate human. I saw shock and trauma that I had never seen up-close before, and learned a lot about how people cope.
I am also happy to say that Taylor, Derek, and myself are closer than we have ever been, that in itself is the perfect way to honor our dad... The pic below is from last weekend, and since we are coming up on the "five year mark" of when our lives changed forever, making this post was super special to me. <3