Embracing your journey and living your dreams

This past weekend I did something so out of my comfort zone and personality…

I did an obstacle course race where you had to struggle over 2m walls, run through mud, climb over stuff, under stuff, through stuff, haul heavy granite blocks into the air, carry sandbags, climb walls, lift truck tires and crawl under wires over mud and stones…

You see, I’m not sporty at all.  If you know me well, you’d nod your head in agreement now…  I do run and like exercising, but I do it to stay healthy and keep me sane.  I didn’t do sports at school and was never good at any type of sport I did do.  I learned how to ride a bicycle at the age of 17… yes, so now you see why this was something soooo not me.  Although I grew up on a farm in the mountains, I would’ve rather paint or draw a picture of the mountain than actually climbing it.

My husband did this obstacle course with me (and this IS his thing, he loooves everything about stuff like this). While doing the race and him helping me with everything, from encouraging words to actually letting me climb on his back so that I can reach the top of the walls… one thing kept popping up…

ME saying these words over and over and over:  “I CAN’T DO IT!!!”

Right at the end while desperately doing the last obstacle, being tired, hurt, cold, wet and full of mud, I started crying and screaming again “I CAN’T DO THIS”.  My awesome husband (who was busy supporting me with his body and feet, almost splitting in two to keep me up while I climb the last wall) shouted back at me with these words:  “STOP saying you can’t do this, this is what you’ve been saying the whole race and look how far you’ve come, so just STOP!”

And just there, while hanging onto the rope with my cold and sore fingers I realised.  This is exactly how I am with myself all the time…

I tell myself I can’t do it, this is not for me, it’s too difficult, how will I be able to do this… etc etc etc…

This is just how photography started for me!  I WANTED to do it, I had this DESIRE to do it, this DREAM, but I told myself I couldn’t do it, who am I to do it.

And so I put it off for 2 years, I had everything, but I TOLD MYSELF I’m not good enough!

One day this same cool husband told me I just have to make the decision, and GO FOR IT.  I still thought all the negative stuff, but my dream and desire came back and I went all out, in March of 2011.

So this blog post is to show you where I started, how I sometimes still think ‘I can’t do this’ but looking back, I see now just how far I’ve come.

So STOP!  Stop being your own worst enemy, stop telling yourself the lies, stop being so hard on yourself.  We all have to start somewhere and grow.  It’s not easy, people disappoint you, you get discouraged, you fall and fail many times, but it’s whether you get up and go on, that counts!

So like I’ve learnt in the race this weekend, just go on, rely on your family, best friends and positive people to help you along the way, but most of all, BELIEVE in yourself, you are already further than yesterday and last week.

And the BEST part…  Achieving and living your passion and dreams, there is no other feeling so awesome in this world!

Now everyone can sit back, relax and enjoy the hilariousness that is my first photography.  Right at the end is a photo of me in tears (yes really) covered in mud trying to get over the last obstacle of the race…

Let’s start with kids…

Some of my first kids photographs.  I was heavy into tilting the camera and creating photos that make people drunk just by looking at it…  And then I’m not even talking about the focus being soooo out, the part that is supposed to be IN focus is way in the background being all blurry and soft (adding to making you drunk just by looking at it…)

Kids before

IMG_0905

Some awesome family photos, also tilted to the extreme.  One being so dark showing clearly that I had NO idea what I was doing here… Probably converted it to black and white thinking maybe that will make it look better…

Family before

Lovely couple photos… Clearly had no idea my camera had an aperture setting to create nice blurry backgrounds, ai and the overexposed background and washed out colours are just not cool here…

Couples before

This portrait is just mehhh, bland and without soul, and such washed out skin, clearly over-edited here.

Portraits before

Everyone in the photos above is either family or very good friends who knows me very well and understands my journey and why I’m doing this post.

This post won’t be complete without some really awesome photos of how far I’ve come since I made the decision… And yet, I’m not even close to where I WANT to be, I’m still learning every day and improving every time. Being a perfectionist I just can’t sit back and say ‘this is it, now I know everything’.  I’m pushing myself every day to be better, learn more, doing something new!

Kids Collage

Family Collage

Couple Collage

Portrait Collage

Lastly, the photo of me getting over the last obstacle and afterwards with a bunch of friends and my awesome husband at the Spartan Race the past weekend.  Photo courtesy, Gizelle Sillands.

Spartan

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