When Cindy first contacted me regarding a family photo shoot in March the month was already full. Well, it was past full. But she was so kind in her email, explaining that her family would be on her daughter Tabitha’s Make A Wish trip (to Disney,) had chosen my photography as the best they could find in the area and really hoped I had time. Of course I knew without hesitation that I would make time, so almost two weeks ago now, Cindy’s family drove over from Orlando and met me at the beach for a special session.
Before the shoot, Cindy gave me some insight into their lives with a link to Tabitha’s Facebook page. So between reading through that page and looking up her condition online (Metachromatic Leukodystrophy,) I felt like I knew this family just a little before we even met. And I’ll be honest, learning what they’ve already been through in losing their youngest son plus walking with Tabitha through everything she deals with… it’s hard to imagine even from this Far side of the lens. It’s hard to approach at first but then I remember that this version of “hard” for me is nothing and it’s silly to even look at it that way. It is nothing in comparison, in fact it is easy. Capture a family full of love, more aware of love and life than most of us will ever be… Easy. A pleasure. An honor.
I was especially impressed with Tabitha’s older brother and sister. What a journey they’ve had already in their young lives. And they were so kind the entire time, so patient and so full of joy. Never a moment did I see anything else. Of course their parents show the same steadfastness. I knew that something carries this family through hard times; their strength was obvious. I’m sure they don’t feel strong all the time, but from my vantage point it was clear.
And Tabitha… It was an unusually cool and windy evening and she was cold at first. Too cold. But once we moved down further on the beach it was warmer and she lit up and I could see the real HER, which is what I’m always aiming to capture but extra focused on that this night. I wanted to capture authentic spirits, beautiful memories, precious REAL moments. I hope I did and I hope these images will be even a tiny blessing to this family. At the bottom of this post I’ve also included a little highlight slideshow.
I’m thankful for this opportunity. Please feel free to send love and encouragement to the M family using the comment section.
Thanks to this sweet family for choosing Angel Gray Photography.