Last week I had the opportunity to share my love of photography and inclusion with Swansboro Elementary School. While there were so many great (and funny) questions, one stands out to me. It was: ‘what’s the most memorable experience of your photography career?’
At the time, I honestly couldn’t give just one memorable experience but, rather, share the love of the people I get to meet and the ways in which I can serve my community through this career. Each session is its own unique set of special moments and I find something to treasure within.
When God called me to step away from services and onto this path, I had more fear than faith. I was being called to explore this creative side of me but I was hesitant to let go of serving our neurodiverse community. By his grace, I have built a life where I am able to use my skills not only to serve neurodiverse and differently abled individuals but to raise awareness about inclusion in various ways. These last few years have been nothing short of amazing and it has very little to do with the technical side of photography.
I received the kindest card and reminder [wait for the end] of my time spent with the children last week, and I will say that of all the places I’ve been this far, THIS might be my most memorable experience. Not just for the funnies or seeing clients I’ve worked with or talking photography styles. But, also, because in 3:5 classes there was a moment to talk about what Autism is and where the beauty lies within it. Here’s the thing: changing the narrative… celebrating differences… it changes lives. It eases bullying, teaches friendship and acceptance, opens doors for individuals who are so deserving … and more. In the beginning, I couldn’t see where photography was going to make as much of a difference as my previous work but sometimes you just have to trust that HIS plan is better than yours.
Feels a little too vulnerable. Might delete later. Might not. Thank you, SBES. I’ll never forget it.