HAPPY BIRTHDAY!! I simply cannot believe it's that time of year to celebrate my birthday. Okay not my actual birthday but the birth of Ellie Grace Photography. 2 years ago in August I decided that I would make a go of creating a business doing the thing that I love most - photography. It wasn't until this time 2 years ago that I took it by the bull horns, registered my business and made a Facebook page, yes I consider making a Facebook page a big step as suddenly my work, my business, my name, my LIFE is out there for the public to see.
GOOD LORD it has been tough! One of my biggest challenges has been my own mental health. I've struggled with depression for about 10 years now on and off but the last 4 years it hit me hard and I simply just didn't want to be here, I didn't have a purpose. Looking back those times were so unbelievably dark, I can't quite believe I was in a place so harsh that I wouldn't wish any human to feel like I did. After some long and strenuous battles at my old work place I decided to do what I actually wanted to do and do photography, so then started my mental battles with building a business.
"I'm not good enough"
"I'm a terrible photographer"
"My work is ugly"
"Everyone's better than me"
"I'll never be that good"
Just some of the things that crossed my mind every single day for 1 year. I quit my job in December last year, not because I could but it was the only thing that would have saved my mental health and it was the best thing I could have done! I'm not sure what exactly has changed in the last year but life is just going wonderfully. This year has changed dramatically, a great boyfriend, I am surrounded by some absolutely beautifully minded people, I don't waste my days in a mindless retail job and I actually have a business that I can see going somewhere, and somewhere great.
However, these thoughts are not gone. It's a constant battle between a dark self-destructive part of me and the other part of me that wants to strive and be the best that I can be. I'm a sucker for comparison, if I see someone elses work I can't help but feel defeated that I'm not as good as them. But then the other side of me kicks in and says "who's to say that you're not as good as them?" EXACTLY!! I'm definitely stronger this year, these thoughts are minimal and I CAN fight back, I CAN DO THIS! In fact, I am doing it.
I can't believe how far Ellie Grace Photography has come in just 2 years, going from strength to strength I've built a well established and successful business in a very short space of time - I need to highlight this sentence and remember this when I'm feeling down. I've had so much help along the way which I just cannot thank my family and friends for enough. Hopefully I'll be able to pay my dad back for all his financial help soon and I'd like to think I help my friends out one way or another! Thank you to everyone who believes in me, you've helped me believe in myself.
Which brings me to my brides and grooms. Thanks SO much to those who trusted me in the very early days of my wedding photography, you guys are why I'm here today. I couldn't be more thankful to the brides and grooms who have chosen me for their future weddings, I am SO excited about spending my day with you guys, creating beautiful photos that you will all look back on and love forever. When you choose me and say such lovely things, it doesn't help my ego grow (I'm not sure I have an ego) but what it does is it makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside and makes me proud to be where I am.
I'm very proud of where I am today and equally proud that I've been strong enough to fight my demons and prove to myself that I can do this, I have done it and I will continue to do it. Unfortunately I think depression will never leave me but I will stay determined that I can fight it, the proof is in the pudding! So Happy Birthday to me and here's to another successful year, let's see where I am this time next year. I really do have an AMAZING job and I wouldn't change it for the world. I am one lucky lady!