Hey there!

I’m so glad you are here at my brand new website! I love blogging so much and i’ve missed it. Although, honestly, i have had so much going on – i just had to take a break from it for awhile. But, that was okay because it wasn’t ready to publish! New things always feel a little awkward at first, don’t they? Embracing change on the technological side of life is always a grimace for me. It takes more time and throws in some learning curves. Without change, tho, life would be completely boring and stale. To introduce my new site, i’m gonna throw in some images from our Boho Styled Shoot that you can browse through while i’m talking to you.

As you may have seen, my husband, and the father of our two children passed away almost 7 weeks ago. It’s been almost 2 months ago already, and it still feels very new. Grief is a strange (monster) thing to walk through. It’s hard to describe or put into adequate words. So, I’m pushing off trying to explain it or talk about it until the time is right. Pushing off grieving comes fairly easy for me. Since i have the two babies to keep me distracted and busy, i almost have to wait until i have a day to myself. I dropped the babies off this morning with their grandparents and just driving there, just the fact that i knew i would have the day to process had me crying on the way there. That does not mean i will cry all day. It just means that i have more space to process without the babies and my heart needs that. My flesh is a little scared.

I have made so many new contacts through this period of time. New friends. Deeper friendships. I am so grateful for people who have walked this road before me. I have found that even tho each story is different and each person grieves differently, we can all agree on one thing. The monstrosity that it is. A friend of mine (who recently lost her husband) agreed with me that we are glad that we know what it is now. We feel badly for those who have not experienced it yet. You will not know what hit you. You won’t. It’s messy. Hard. Shameful.

But that’s not the end. Although grief is ugly there is no winning or losing. It is something that needs to be waded through with patience and grace. And i’m here to do that with you. The other thing that i am here to talk about.. is addiction. I have learned more from Steve in the short time i new him, than i think i learned in my lifetime so far. He loved to talk and he loved people. Mix that with a dark lifestyle that he could not break free from and you get information overload into a side of this world that you may not want to know anything about. Addiction is everywhere and the grips of darkness are on every side of us. Drugs are on every street corner and alcohol is a silent, hiding monster that can steel your soul.  I am here to talk about it. Both sides of it. I’m not educated in this area, i only speak what i know. I have read a lot of books, attended a lot of counseling, and have had mentors with experience to guide me through. If you are the person walking beside someone who is an addict – in whatever area of life…..I would beg you to find connection to people who have walked the same road.

Life is meant to be lived. It does not matter what you have lost or been through it is possible. Being fully present and saying yes to life is the best way you can respond to the bad stuff that comes along. It does not diminish your story but it tells the darkness who is boss. It says, I see that bad thing that happened to me, but that bad thing (or person) has no control over me anymore. You have only one life to live. Let’s make it a full one. It is completely possible to see the truth about every kind of situation and still live in joy and freedom. In fact – truth is what will set you free. Not hiding. Not masking our feelings. Not being present. Walk with me as we find ways to not allow our situations in life to define us.

My children are completely amazing to me. I would choose them a million times over. They are kind and funny and sensitive. Already they are being best friends and both of them were so good at loving their dad. The other day Jaxon was eating gummies that a friend had given to us. I set him up with his watch (tablet) and his snack (gummies) and he was all snuggled on the couch. Very soon he came flying into the kitchen, his eyes were wide as saucers (and he speaks very loudly when excited) and he said, “Daddy give me gummies!” I like to ask him questions when he says things like this because i want to find out everything about whats in that head of his. So, i said, “He did?” “Yeah! He give me gummies!” he said again so excited i was hesitant to correct him, but i did. “Jaxon, remember Cassandra? Her mom was here today and she gave you those gummies.” “Yeah,” he replied, much more calm now. “Daddy give me gummies.” And he walked back into the living room leaving me to think.  Either he just had a dream while he was napping that his daddy had brought him gummies or he was remembering that his daddy also liked to buy him gummies. I may never know. About once a day we have a conversation about daddy that goes something like this one did. And even tho it breaks my heart,  I am so grateful for each one. I don’t want his children to forget about who he was to them. I don’t want to forget him.

I feel like i am the luckiest person alive. I get to enjoy the hobby of taking photos, spend time with people, make new friends, be a part of an amazing community of creatives and working people outside of my home. I get a break from motherhood to be inspired and support my family all the while. The number one most frustrating and inspiring thing to me in the business of photography is by far…..the learning. I don’t feel as if i will ever arrive and then be done learning. There are so many programs and lenses and angles and don’t even get me started on computers and the programs that come with them. It is endless. It is hard work, too. There are long hours on your feet and then long hours in front of your computer and so many tiny details in between. A lot of the process is not glamorous at all, but has to be done, and like any job or work, i have learned to always do the things i don’t enjoy first so that i can have fun doing the part i love! My mom taught me that. She would say something about doing a chore over and over until it’s not a chore but something you love to do! And that is so so true. I will be passing that one on to my kids for sure!

So – join me. Join me on this walk of life. I will introduce you to some amazing, beautiful people along the way. Each of which have stories of their own. There will be lots of pictures always and you can learn about me and i can connect with you. I hope to inspire you to live a full life. It does not mean you have to go do only exciting things. My full life is just a lot of time on the floor doing puzzles (or are we throwing puzzles??) and honestly it can seem drab and lonely at times. But, we can do this! Together is always better than alone.

 

P.S. Be sure to follow me on instagram and facebook for all the in between stuff!

 

xoxo-diane

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