This has been a hard blog to sit down and write. Leaving the place I have held down roots the longest was heartbreaking. Virginia Beach was my home for a very long time. I raised my kids, started a business, bought my first house, loved hard, met some incredible people who will forever be my tribe no matter how far away I go, cried more tears than I care to remember and got to witness some incredible miracles. I'm so lucky to have been able to experience the many things I did while I was in Virginia. The week before I left, I was completely terrified. This place and these amazing people were all I had known for a huge chunk of my life. I knew the mountains were calling me home but I just wasn't sure I was ready to listen. Was I going to be landlocked? Would my old friends embrace me? What would my family life look like? It was a scary time for me and although it has all worked out for the very best (blog for another time) I will forever love and miss Virginia. So here's my love letter to Virginia.
You hold such amazing memories for me. You embraced me during a time when I was a young wife, mother of two amazing kids and starting over in a new place where I didn't know anyone. Your beautiful beaches provided playtime, a place to get away to think and many backdrops for beautiful photography sessions. I can't thank you enough for the awesome and amazing people you put in my life while I lived there. I met my mentor who taught me how to start a photography business and be successful at it. I met some talented and warm hearted friendors who embraced me and made me feel part of the wedding/creative community. Most of all I have made some truly amazing friends who are forever my family. I'm even thankful for the friendships that didn't last and the hardships I faced because they taught me some great lessons about myself and what I want from my life.
Thank you for being a great place for my kids to grow up, for being culturally diverse and full of adventure. They learned to accept people as people without labels. They became wonderful kids who contribute to this world in very positive ways. They both think of others and are passionate about helping those who can't help themselves.
Although it was time to say goodbye to your beautiful shores and the amazing people that live life here, please know I take a piece of you with me wherever I go. I'll come back to visit as often as I can and I will forever think of you with fondness and love.
Here are some highlights from my time in Virginia. I wish I could post all of the beautiful memories I have but these are some pretty awesome ones.