Thursday, January 23, 2014
I had the opportunity to photograph this beautiful wedding in Castine, Maine this past September. Most of the weddings I shoot are on a freelance basis for a wonderful company, and this was one of theirs. As I was preparing to travel to photograph this wedding, I was looking all over the internet for pictures of what this town and the coast of Maine would be like. Nothing could have prepared me for how beautiful it actually was. It changed me. I came here not knowing what to expect, and the drive from my room in Bangor to this tiny coastal town left me breathless.
I photographed quite a few weddings last year, and many of them involved a good bit of driving or flying. Almost every time I was surprised by what a restful experience it could be to turn off the radio, put the phone away, and just drive, reflecting on my life, thinking about John and our family, praying. This drive was one such experience. It came in the midst of an incredibly busy time for me. I was worn out from too much work and not enough rest, I felt weary and a little bit empty. I felt like I was spinning my wheels with little gain, and I realized (again) how short life really is and how much I longed to be pouring into what really matters but felt continually kept back by things that needed to be done yesterday.
And then I was confronted with incredible, abundant beauty all around me. And it was like I was suspended in this long moment filled with sunlight -- all I could do was drive and see this drama unfolding. I couldn't be working on anything else, I couldn't check my phone because there was no signal, I had no where to be and nothing to do but just be in that car with my eyes open, watching. And I felt rest. I felt alive. I felt hope wash over me. I went from being stretched thin to feeling full.
In many ways I feel like I am coming out of a stretched-thin time of my life and moving into a place with rest and space, much like that moment on the drive to Castine. Very tangibly. This year has brought with it a new season, with John working full time for the University here in Athens, wedding season slowing down, preparing for our own wedding and getting ready to move into the home we will share when we're married. Piper is in her second semester of pre-K and Larken spends time at Arrow every weekday. Both girls are getting so much older, and one of the sweetest rewards for all the outpouring of love and energy that parenting is watching them grow together. And we are growing together, the four of us.
Posted by Paige French at 1:57 PM