I spent the evening with some of my oldest and closest friends. We drank wine, talked about boys (both the grown up and not so grown up ones), cried, and literally laughed until I peed my pants a little bit. It was the best. I've been laughing and crying with these girls for decades, and I love them like family. We have been through miscarriages, deaths of parents and friends, births, vacations, weddings, divorces, high school, and so much more. I know without a shadow of a doubt that they will be there for me no matter what. They are my tribe.
I have been blessed not only with these amazing women, but with some great friends from church and an amazing group of women that I met online when I was pregnant with my oldest. He just turned 13, so we have known each other almost 14 years. I would not be the parent I am today or had the strength or insight into my relationships if I had not met these women. We have been through miscarriages, leukemia, divorces, remarriages, breast cancer, I don't know how many births, understanding transgender children, drug and alcohol addiction in children, parents, and spouses, and just the ridiculousness of life. They are my tribe.
These women have been instrumental to my life, and I know that I would not be the person, wife, mother, or friend I am today without them. Last night, one of my friends was talking about a book she read about women and how important having that group of women around them when they are pregnant, during childbirth, and postpartum. It is critical to surround the new mother, supporting her, letting her know her strength and helping her see that there is a light at the end of the tunnel. This is one of the reasons I love being a photographer during these life changing events. I love being that support to women and documenting their strength and power in that moment of motherhood. Women need each other, especially through life changing experiences when strength and will are tested to the limit. I love that before, during, and after birth I get to be part of a family's tribe, and help them remember the moments - in their strength and pain, in meeting their babies for the first time, and all of the love and fear that comes along with a new life