Let's talk about love...
I think everyone grows up with an idea of what love is. That definition, different for each of us, is shaped by movies we watch, interactions by our parents, the way friends treat us, what we read...etc. The funny thing about love, is that we often don't ask ourselves what it is we believe love to be. We formulate this idea of a feeling the same way we learn everything else, through influence from outside sources and so rarely from what we ourselves need.
This might be why there are hundreds of books filling shelves that talk about self love, knowing who you are and what you want, how loving yourself first is the only way to truly love someone else. People who are smarter, or have taken the time, have sat down to share their realization that knowing yourself and loving YOU is so important in your journey with other souls.
I think it is incredibly easy to put a tremendous amount of pressure on ourselves when we see other people's love. Whether we find it through pictures online, or see it when we are around friends and family, it is easy to be envious, or to compare who we are and what we have to that of those around us. I see this often times with couples planning a wedding , they feel so stressed to make things perfect... perfect for pictures, perfect for guests. In the end, it's easy to forget about what you desire when you feel like you need to compare yourself to others. What you want out of love might not be another person’s version of love and that’s okay.
I often mention that I am a playful photographer because my goal during a shoot is to have so much fun and make my clients so comfortable they forget I'm there and can simply enjoy each other. I want them to always look back on the photographs and see that spark between themselves that was so obvious to the camera.
As a photographer I adore capturing couples. For me, the uniqueness in each pair's love is so interesting and special to document that it is probably why I still pick up a camera and do what I do. There is something about honest passion, genuine appreciation and respect, true admiration, that makes photographing other people's moments so special. It comes in so many forms, but it is always magic.
I love the inside jokes between people that I am not part of, but can feel from behind my lens. The little ways they always have to touch each other, or check in to see how the other is doing. I love the kisses I don't have to ask couples to do, because they eventually get so lost in the moment that their lips gravitate together.
I love the body language between two people so comfortable with each other that they have unique ways they hold each other. You can always see the little nook they've carved out when they hug, or are simply standing together not thinking about the rest of the world.
I love the guys that randomly book a photo session for their girl because they love being in pictures with them so much... or always extend their arm to take a selfie with their boo anywhere they can.
I love the fist pump moments when someone gets to marry the love of their life and still can't believe she said yes, even on their big day, after having years and a kid with her. That - crazy about you- kind of love that you can still see burning in their eyes after years and years of marriage.
The - you know everything about me and support me kind of love. I tell you the good the bad the ugly and you always have my back... and if I had to pick you, or giving up the rest of what I know and love, you would win every time.
The kind of love that makes your nose crinkle because you both share the love for similar things, and life seems so easy and adventurous being with a person so similar to yourself.
True authentic love is not a copycat of what you expected love to be. It is finding your home, your best friend, your safe place, in the soul of another and knowing they also found that in you. I promise you dear reader that your type of love, when you find your soulmate, will be unlike anything you expected or have seen before and will shine through.
Don't be afraid to be you and your version of love, and let others have space to be theirs. It's amazing the beauty that happens when we can all just be ourselves.