This being my first Valentine's Day as a single working mom, I started off the day feeling rather jaded. And then I read a FB post about a dear friend's little boy who was at the hospital this very morning donating his bone marrow for his big sister who is battling a recurring cancer and that pretty much snapped me right out of my jaded-ness. It forced me to take a moment to reflect upon the "meaning" of this Hallmark Holiday, or rather, what true LOVE really means. And what that sweet little boy is doing for his sister, and his family, is the purest form of love. Another friend of mine succinctly pointed out that Valentine's Day is really supposed to be about celebrating a Saint and not about showering each other with commercialized love. Granted, Valentine's Day meaning and application has evolved over the decades. As it stands nowadays, it is a day to celebrate LOVE in all its forms. And I'm guessing self-love qualifies too! So, as I ponder and reflect on how lucky I am to have many different forms of love in my life; from the endearing and absolute love my children give me, to the unconditional (almost suffocating!? HA!) love my dog gives me, to the always supportive love my friends give me and last, but not least, to the (sometimes complicated) love my family provides... all sorts of love to go around! And that love is all reciprocal of course! You get what you give when it comes to love... But there's one more love that I have. My love for my clients. Without them, I would unequivocally not be able to provide for my children, put a roof over their heads and food on the table. I'd be unable to support my children and myself doing a job that brings me tremendous satisfaction and joy. My clients give ME life by making my dreams possible, by providing me with income to sustain my kids and also by trusting me and giving me all of themselves during our shoots for me to capture on film for them. The relationship I have with my clients, especially those whom I've been photographing for years now, is so incredibly special to me. I consider most of them my dear FRIENDS. I socialize with them, keep tabs throughout the year, stay in touch for special events, celebrate their ups and console during their lows. They are my extended family in a way. And I'm so deeply grateful and appreciative for them sustaining me, especially during this time of transition, by allowing me to keep doing what I love to do, and making it possible for me to provide for my children by doing what I was meant to be doing at this stage in my life. I honestly cannot express my gratitude to all my friends and clients, especially over the past 8 months as I've navigated some rough personal waters. I'm emerging from the storm, stronger than ever and ready to take on the world thanks to the support I've received. I've made some new friendships during this time which have meant the world to me and whom I will cherish forever (XOXO Kathy). I've had old friendships which have utterly blown me away with their kindness and thoughtfullness. I've met and connected with some amazing women (hola, HB's!) who have provided me with enough comic relief to sustain me through just about any bad day. And my clients, who hire me, so I can provide them with my art and take care of my littles... you ROCK! It's not easy supporting two kids on your own in an over-saturated industry during a depressed economy providing an artform whose value is truly subjective. So, on this day of love, I'm sending out oodles of it out to all of my friends, family and clients. THANK YOU. :)
A quick snapshot of Ellie's V-day cards which I was assembling at 10pm last night, hahahaha! Nothing like crunchtime eh? Thank you to PINTEREST for the template, which I got HERE.