I'm sitting alone, sipping vodka and munching two-year-old Thin Mints that I found in the back of the freezer. In other words, I'm feeling confessional.
I've been trying to hold on to a secret for a while now. I wanted to wait and have a Big Reveal. I wanted to be knee-deep in the hoopla of my Big Reveal sometime in early 2015. Even in my confessional mood, I'm struggling whether to share with you.
The thing is, I'm a lousy secret-keeper. Don't get me wrong--I can be trusted with others' secrets. I just don't have any of my own. In fact, this Great Big Secret that has me aflutter probably will seem like no secret at all to most of you. I expect that your reaction will be something like, "Well, duh."
So, while it may seem like no big whoop to you, please bear with me and realize that overcoming self-doubt and perfectionism is a really big thing. Putting yourself out there is hard. Even admitting a dream is a challenge. For a long time, I couldn't even admit it to myself because my inner critic (whom I picture in devil's attire sitting atop my shoulder, much like the Great Gazoo) would shoot me down.
I finally admitted it to myself. I admitted it to some lawyer after that. Only once I'd started down the path did I tell my biggest supporters, my husband and parents. I didn't want anyone to suggest I not go down the path, so I didn't ask permission to try.
Friends, I am going to start my own photography business.
While you're feeling let down and thinking "well, duh," please understand that the previous sentence was several years in the making. I only realized that I had this dream after some pseudo-inspirational follow-your-dreams Facebook meme made me weepy back in the spring. (Embarrassing, but true.) My denial was so significant that I took a while to identify what the moistness in my eyes was all about. Once I did, I struggled with self-doubt and technical details for months before making the leap.
Friends here on the ground will not be surprised because I've told you face-to-face. Facebook friends will not be surprised because I've maintained a Facebook page for my photography for a few months. I started the Sea Green Photography page to share my work in Facebook photography forums, but only after I settled upon a name that made me happy--one I could see as my someday business pseudonym.
While I will still have a Big Reveal when my business launches officially--websites and logos and cards (oh my!)--it feels right to share the decision with you now. After all, many of you have followed me on this journey from the very beginning.
I took my first photography class around the time I started this blog. I was scared to death. Could I be more than "just a mom" after so much time away from the professional world? Could I even be creative? Would I embarrass myself among my "hip, young, artsy classmates?" Could this old dog learn new tricks?
Looking back at those old posts, I'm struck by my anxiety. Once I get past that, however, I can see my excitement, even about the fundamentals. That excitement has not dissipated; the more I learn, the more I want to know.
I can't begin to quantify the number of photos I've taken since that first class, but every single one has been a learning experience. I certainly have learned a lot of how-to, but I've also learned a lot about myself.
Thanks to all of you who faithfully read what I write here, and a particular thanks to those of you who have been here since the beginning, when my posts were wordy and my photographs were not great.
When I have a Big Reveal to share, you will be the first to know. Until then, I will gladly accept any and all encouragement you have to offer. Naysayers, please keep it to yourself for now. My dreams are exciting but fragile.
Until then, please follow along on my Sea Green Photography Facebook page as well as my Flotsam of the Mind page. If you're into mixing your social media, I'm also on Instagram as @seagreenphoto.
Thanks for walking this path with me. I don't yet know where it will lead, but I'm very happy to have found it.