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August 11, 2017

“Parent in a big way!”

One of my favorite movies of all time is an old, black and white film called Random Harvest.  (If you haven’t seen it, go grab yourself a bowl of popcorn and watch it now as soon as you’re done reading this!)  Anyway, in the movie there is a scene where the main character, Smithy, and his wife have just had their first child.  Beaming with pride, he goes to register the child’s birth.  When the clerk asks for his occupation, Smithy replies, “Writer, in a small way, of course.  Writer and parent.  Parent in a big way!”

So what does this have to do with photography?  Well, at first glance, not much!  But lately this scene has been coming to mind over and over.  Business has been pretty busy this summer.  I’ve been able to photograph family, friends, and strangers who have turned into friends.  It’s been an incredible blessing and an incredible amount of work.  The cycle of upload, edit, blog, upload, edit, blog has seemed never-ending.  But, every time that I started to feel overwhelmed, or a twinge of “Mom Guilt” (Am I spending enough time with my family?), I would hear Smithy’s words, “Writer and parent. Parent in a big way!”  And some of my stress would disappear.  

I’ve been starting to realize the beauty that’s in balance.  There truly is a time to work, to get up early and go to bed late, to serve people well and bless others.  But there is also a time to rest, spend time with family, and not make plans.  This summer has been a reminder for me that my greatest occupation may not be the thing that brings in the most money.  Some days, while my time may be spent taking or editing photos, the greatest work I will accomplish is in what I have taught a little girl.   

So, for the last few weeks you may have noticed less of me.  Less posts, less comments, less sharing on Facebook and Instagram.  I’m definitely not winning at social media marketing right now…and that’s ok. Because what I have been able to do for the past few weeks is enjoy a few of those oh-so-fleeting lazy days of summer.  We have rocked in the hammock, read library books for fun, gone swimming in lakes, taken walks to nowhere and back.  I’ve documented some of it and have shared none of it.  But let me tell you, it has been heavenly.  

To be honest, I don’t remember registering Elizabeth’s birth (although I know we did because we have her birth certificate).  I’m pretty sure we didn’t have to list our occupations anywhere.  But, if someone were to ask, I’m pretty sure I’d follow Smithy’s lead.  “Photographer, in a small way, of course.  Photographer and parent.  Parent in a big way!” 

Parent in a Big Way, Onondaga Lake Park, Syracuse photographer, Samantha Ludlow Photography

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