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The Next Brene Brown

The other day I told my story in depth to another new therapist that I've been seeing for a couple months now. It was shared without tears, stated without question, spoken matter of factly. After I was done filling in the details, she stopped me and said, "I understand better now. In your charts it says you had a psychotic break, and I want to be sure that you understand now that you didn't just have a psychotic break, you suffered deeply from PTSD, which lead into a state of psychosis." God, I love my new therapist. She went on to explain that as we tell our stories and start to open up about the traumas that we have suffered through, we begin to understand better and normalize tragedies that women (and men too) everywhere face. We begin to understand that there hasn't been something wrong with us, but there was a lot of wrong done to us. I said, "Yeah, Brene Brown also had a break down and look where she is now!" She is doing so much great work that im
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Today I Could Have Been Married for More Than Half my Lifetime

  I don't know how I got there or for how long I had been standing within the frame of the door. All I know is that my arms were reaching high over my head and I was pushing against all odds, and against the weight of the crumbling building around me. There were holes in the ceiling and cracks in the walls. The whole structure was shaking, but I stood there with defiant desperation. I would not let it fall. My feet were firmly planted and every ounce of my strength was invested into a false hope of holding up what would have surely crushed me had his arm not reached in and saved me. With one strong and steady swoop I was pulled far from harm's way. In that moment, everything crumbled into a heap on the ground. My dreams, my hopes, my effort, all that I had fought so hard for, everything the building had meant to me. It all came crumbling down. I wanted to be angry, and only briefly felt an overwhelming sadness, before I realized that my life had been spared. I could have been c

Sunset at the Oregon Beach

I'll let these photos speak for themselves 😍

What is Love

There is a love that surpasses the depths of all you have known. There is a love that waits for you. It is patient and knows that your timing is not the timing that it would have for you. This love does not grow tired in its waiting. It hopes and patiently endures. There is no rush, because this love so fully trusts that your experiences will shape you and make you ready when the timing is right. There is a love that is good. It sets its intention on what is healthy for you, and it thinks of what you need in order to be more complete and full. This love is ready and willing to give, from the outpouring of its own heart. There is a love that aches when you ache. This love sits with you and holds you. It listens and understands. It wraps its arms around you and its heart is glad to be near. When sadness is present, this love comforts and embraces you in your tears. There is a love that withstands the testing of time. It is true and faithful. There is no swaying from its purposeful giving

Ebb and Flow

 Photography has been an ebbing and flowing endeavor in my life for the past 11 years. It is now the beginning of the busy season for outdoor photography in the Pacific Northwest. Portland, Oregon has about 2-3 beautiful months of consistent sunshine and bearable weather and then 9+ months of grey and wetness. I am excited to be breaking in a new camera at the beginning of the season this year. This was my first session with the upgraded equipment. This SW Portland home had a flood of natural light which made for a great exposure. Every time I try to incorporate artificial lighting into my work, I am just not pleased with the results. Some photographers have it down, but I would say that my style calls for the simplicity of less equipment, less posing, and more focus on the feeling between family members. I like to capture natural moments where my subjects can just be themselves, without the added stress of looking just right while waiting on me. This family was full of cuteness. Such

I Am Human

I am human. I struggle everyday to be seen, to be heard, to know myself, to give and to receive love. I am human. I am not good or bad. I am everything in between. I am not black or white, I am every shade of sorrow and magic. I am human. I live, I breathe, I love, I weep, I laugh, I run, I play. I am human. I hurt and I cause pain. I seek my own. I give generously. I am human. I hope, I dream, I fight, I know anxiety and depression. I am human. There are days that my heart is submerged in sorrow, there are days where my spirit joyfully dances and sings. I am not one or the other. I am human. I have experienced trauma. I have known infidelity. I have known death. I have known abuse.  I have woken up as a mental health patient in a hospital. I have played every card until I have learned the meaning of grace. I have seen the resilience of my children in the face of adversity. I have watched them grow and also live out pain. I have died a million deaths of sorrow, of regret, and of sadnes

10 Practical Things You Should know During Personally Difficult Times

10 Practical Things You Should Know During Personally Difficult Times 1. Your limitations of what you can do to help improve the situation. 2. Your personal boundaries of what you can tolerate and offer others. 3. Your weaknesses so you can know where you will need the most help. 4. Your strengths so you grow in your self confidence. 5. Your mental, emotional, spiritual, social, physical, financial needs so you can remain nourished. 6. Your bad coping strategies so you can avoid doing the things that will deplete your strength. 7. Your support people so you are not carrying the burden alone. 8. Your community resources so you can maintain your self sufficiency. 9. Your healthy hopes and goals for the situation so you can keep aiming towards improvement. 10. Your worth and value because you are something amazing.