So blogs are about being real and letting people really discover who you are through words-so it is only fitting that you really see who I am from jump. I am the one who is always a bit late. I have the best intentions but I cannot for the life of me quite nail the whole ‘on time’ thing down. Don’t get me wrong, when I have appointments with clients and work I am there but anything outside of that tends to take a bit of a hit. So in line with that and being real, one of my New Years resolution is to start up my blog-so of course I’m 2 weeks late. This is the real Kenna.
Who am I/What do you do…..that question has really taken a hit in the last year. I know that they are completely different questions but for me they had become tangled into one over the past 10 years. I didn’t realize it until I was forced to see that I had started to define who I was by what I did. If you had asked me over a year ago who I was I would have said a Visual Merchandising Supervisor. I could tell you how many stores I had opened since the company started (from 5 stores initially to 80 when I left), how many stores I oversaw and all of the people that I had been privileged to meet and work with. I experienced so many things during my career with Garage, plus I was getting paid to spend every day in a new mall (dream job!). To say I loved every minute of it would be a lie because it was stressful and ever changing but I loved the challenge, the travel, the people, the company and of course the discount. It was a fast paced job and I was constantly busy and that is something that I craved. I based (past tense because I have finally identified this trait and I am working to fix it!) my worth on my busyness. Most days, by how I measured my worth, I was doing good and I was successful.
(by the way…why I am tearing up as I type this? truthful moment)
Que the life changing moment that God uses to shake things up and reveal truths about yourself that sometime aren’t the prettiest thing to look at. The greatest gift ever entered my life on April 9 2016 Brooks Allen Calhoun. All of a sudden I was a Visual Merchandising Supervisor and a mom. Brooks didn’t know I had a job outside of taking care of him and I couldn’t explain to him why I needed to answer emails for work instead of play with him when I got home, or why I had to be gone for a few days at a time after my 6 month maternity leave ended. It broke both of our hearts.
Photography has always been my first love. I was given a camera when I was in high school and was encourage to enter my images into the 4H contest (I’m from KY so this is fitting). I continued to pursue photography and decided to make it my career after high school. I went to an amazing school that offered a 4 year degree in fine art and digital photography. Life happens after graduation and I ended up working for Garage in New York. My plan to get an internships in the city for photography. The fear of rejection got the best of me and I only did photography for close friends and family. I poured my heart into Garage and I don’t regret it for one second.
With the arrival of Brooks I knew something had to change. But how could I give up who I thought I was to become a mom?? I know that sounds so terrible, I feel guilty typing it, but it was the truth. I know being a mom is the most important job I could ever do or have the privilege of doing but I struggled with, and still struggle, with how to I measure my success. I am busy, all the time, every day with my little man so in theory I should feel successful since I crave busyness but since I can’t measure the success of how I am spending my time how do I know if I’m doing a good job? It’s a vicious cycle that really beat me down a few times last year.
Photography has allowed me do the most important job, be a mom, and still have a piece of my own identiy. Photography allows me to do what I love and not have to sacrifice so much of my time with my family. Life balance is critical God is so faithful in His promises of provision. The path hasn’t been easy but He has been with me through all of the steps. Am I were I want to be with my business-no. I want to continue to grow push my limit with every session. I would even like to start back with my original love of film this year! Most importantly photography allows me to give time back, something I missed so much of over the past 10 years, to families and to couples. I am able to capture moments in time, that disappear in an instant, so that you can look back and smile, cry or just reflect on where you have been.
It is a new year. I am so thankful for the journey of 2017 that has brought me to this point in my life. I am even more grateful for a God who reminded me of who I really was in His eyes.