Taking that leap changed my life
Grief is a feeling no one can understand until you are faced with it head on.
"(Grief) is such an unnatural feeling and you don't get a timeout to process it. You're supposed to pick up your life and keep trucking. You're still expected to laugh at people's jokes and not cringe when someone says they're "dying" from same said joke. Like I've said before, I repeatedly want to push the pause button, and I can't." - Amanda Reynolds
Our team member Chrissy writes this weeks blog about her experience with grief and how she was finally able to find herself again. Sometimes these photoshoots are more than just pretty pictures at the end of the day - sometimes they are an opportunity we didn't know we needed.
• Gangnam Style took over the world
• Obama entered his second term
• Justin Bieber and Selena Gomez broke up for the first time
• Will and Kate announced their royal pregnancy
• Louisville lost to Kentucky in the Final Four - as Kentucky went on to win the Men’s Basketball National Championship. (Still annoyed about that one)
But little did I know my world would also turn upside down.
February 2012 my grandpa passed away.
What I didn’t know at the time is that when I lost him, I’d also lose myself.
I became a person that I didn’t know and I didn’t love. My bubbly personality was gone along with every other positive trait I saw in myself. The entire dynamic of my family changed. My relationship changed. I didn’t know how to function in the same ways that I had before.
Instead of going through the normal grieving process, I convinced myself that life just wasn’t meant to be happy. So I lived in a dark place mentally, covering it up by keeping myself busier than any person should be.
I thought if I stayed busy - then I wouldn’t have time to stop and think. To stop and actually grieve a loss that was for me.
Life throws a lot of unexpected things your way all the time. It’s how you react to those things that show who you are as a person.
I didn’t handle unexpected loss very well. I reacted to it in ways that I wish I could go back and change, but often reflect on when thinking about how much I have grown since then.
Fast forward to 2018 - Kaitlin Keane Photography
I didn’t know it at the time, but KKP is what it would take to bring the old me back. The person I was before 2012. The person who had a positive mentality and took advantage of life’s opportunities. The person my Papa always wanted me to be.
I answered a modeling call put out by Kaitlin on Instagram.
My sole thought was “hey, this might be a fun thing to do!”.
Taking that leap changed my life.
Over the last two years I have seen myself come out of a place that I hid in and wouldn’t talk about. I have a light back in my life and I’ve found it through the growth of friendships and letting the positive minds of those around me influence my own thinking.
For the first time in my life, I feel comfortable opening up to other’s about dealing with grief and the effects a loss can have on someone. Everything in my life has improved, from my confidence, my personality, my relationship and my friendships.
I’m taking advantage of opportunities and embracing the feeling of living a full life again.
So yeah, life is going to throw unexpected things your way. But sometimes those things are exactly what you need to get you back on track to the life you’re meant to be living.
I’m glad to be back on track and I am thankful to all of the people in my life who have helped me get to this point.
Elvin S. Pruitt Jr.
July 18, 1948 – February 27, 2012
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