Mothering is a journey that takes us down roads we never imagined. Just ask any mom, she'll concur. Sometimes the roads are filled with indescribable joy...sometimes they are filled with overwhelming grief. All roads are filled with more than enough for one day's work. More often than not, the days are unpredictable and require a perseverance that is not for the faint of heart.
Although mothering is full of a million in one things none of us never imagined, there's a camaraderie that develops between us mothers that helps to keep us all sane and realizing there's a lot to be learned on this journey. However, when you are mother to a child with severe disabilities, that same sheltering camaraderie is a safe haven that's not easily found.
Heather has a little boy who captured her heart 5 years ago although she's never heard him speak. Aspen has severe autism. This can make the parenting journey a lonely one that often feels ringed in sadness and isolation. Few understand the quiet journey you are on with autism. I spoke with Heather a year ago when she was ready to book an Unveil your Cinderella session. "I need to be unburied." My heart ached for her after our conversation and I was eager to capture her before my lens. What she said was familiar sentiment from my Unveil your Cinderella clients, but I knew hers took on a heavier weight than typical.
Unfortunately, life took some personal downturns that threw her plans into a heap of ashes. She cut her very long hair off knowing Cinderella was not to be (our on site styling services with Jill and hair extensions turned back the clock on that decision) Fast forward the dial a year later and I leave my LifePoint church service focused on the HUGS ministry (Helping Uniquely Gifted Souls). This is our ministry for attenders with disabilities of all ages. I could not stop thinking about Heather and our own philanthropic vision to be the hands and feet of Jesus to a hurting world. We reached out to Heather with a Mother's Day surprise gifted session to 'unbury her.' Best wishes on your journey Heather and may you be surrounded by women who can cheer you on! Can't say enough great things about HUGS for parents who'd like to have their children cared for while they attend services to come explore our great God who cares for us.
This closing soulful portrait is an homage to the many layers that comprise us as women, growing on this journey to understand our role every step of the way....