The Secret of Change

two stand up paddleboarders willamette river portland oregon

The secret of change is to focus all of your energy, not on fighting the old, but on building the new. -- Socrates (not the Socrates you think)

For the past several months, I have been contemplating the direction of my blog. When I started blogging seven years ago, it was a chronicle of my life as a young mom battling cancer. After three years of that, I wanted to grow beyond my identity as a cancer survivor and mother. I began lightening up my content on the blog as I grew as a photographer and established my business. I tried to make it less about my personal life and more about my work.

I believe that I took too much of me out of my content however. I have gotten feedback three times in the three months from three different people (one of whom is me) about this idea.

1. I have shared many, many pretty photographs but if you are new to my blog and do not know my cancer history, you do not see that there is that edge to my work. The edge is missing, which is what gives my work depth and meaning.

2. There is actually no single location on my blog that tells my cancer story that is easy to find and read.

3. I am still actively dealing with late effects from cancer treatments eight years ago, feeling isolated about it and not sharing any of it on my blog.

This morning after I dropped my son off at school, I parked near the river and walked out on to a dock. I watched these two girl friends enter the river on their SUPs, and push off. Within moments, the current of the Willamette River whisked them north and out of my view.

I am going to stop fighting the old and start building the new. My blog is ready to grow beyond the two extremes of being all about my life with cancer and all about my work. It is about me and if i work on finding that just-right balance of content, I will build something new, build community, feel less alone and hopefully help others who may be dealing with the same things that I am. I want to be like the two women paddling this morning: going with the current and finding my flow, instead of fighting all the changes in front of me, paddling against the current and getting nowhere fast.

My hope is that by sharing more of me again, the true depth of my work behind the camera will be more easily seen with the eyes, because it has always had my heart and soul in it. I admit it is scary to add some of the depth and dark edges back to my writing here. However, I am going through a lot of changes and I realized this morning that I do not have to do it alone. I have simply chosen to do it alone out of fear.