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Me: Alexa, play "The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air"

Alexa: Now this is a story all about how my life got flipped, turned upside down

Where I've been since July of last year, what I'm doing, who am I (?), who i've seen, and wHaT dOeS cOvId MeAn tO mE.

THESE are the questions I know have been keeping you up at night. In the wee hours of the night, when the sky is the darkest, and you roll over and sigh at the ever spinning hands of the ticking clock, you ask yourself, "why hasn't Iris blogged since July? why is her blog grammar so horrible? and WHAT IS eating Gilbert Grape?"

First of all, the WHY. Honestly, life has changed for me a lot since July. In August I had a ton of weddings I was second shooting for, September I went on a photography retreat in Arizona (more on that later), and in October I made the extremely difficult decision to separate from my husband of 10 years. Yes. 10 years.

October through December were some of the hardest months of my life. Selling our home, splitting assets, completely changing our lives... I was still working and pouring everything left I had after kids and court and drama into my photography. I was able to book the most weddings I've ever had for the year of 2020.

Then January hits. I am laid off of my "day job". The company I was working for closed the branch I was at and there was no opportunity to transfer. I felt like the air was knocked out of me. I had just left my husband, moved into a new apartment, had a whole new set of bills and attorney expenses... and the only stable thing I had left, I lost.

The weeks I spent unemployed were some of the hardest mentally but also gave me time to spend with my kids, my mom before her retirement move to Hawaii, and overall just to pull myself back together.

In a few weeks, I got a new job! All thanks to that moonlit seance, no doubt. My new job is in healthcare, I rock at it, and the company I work for has an amazing culture that some companies only talk about having.

And as things start to smooth out... it's time for my mom to retire and move to Hawaii. My mom and I have become closer than we ever have been in my life. I was calling or going to see her almost every single day and now she's an 8 hour flight away. I can't really explain the feelings I had with her leaving without unfolding all of my child hood traumas, but believe when I say, this was kind of a big deal.

Then, who comes walking into my daughter's birthday party looking like a well groomed SNAQQ? Oh yeah, baby daddy, ex husband. Long story short, James and I are in counseling and have been working on pulling our family back together. And in a more serious note, I have been super thankful for the changes and effort he has put forth into keeping the commitment that we made to one another in our marriage. I am not perfect, by any stretch of the word. I'm broken, flawed, and absolutely a work in progress. I can't tell you how thankful I really am to have someone who is willing to love me and support me through my growth and struggles.

And as soon as you start to think "wow Iris, I like roller coasters but you're an entire Six Flags theme park" the son of a bitch we have all grown to hate comes strolling in, COVID-19. All but three weddings I had booked for 2020 were either postponed or completely cancelled. Because of social distancing no one is booking weddings. What is my life?!

So here I am. Writing the longest blog post I've ever written to basically say "yes I am still alive and I haven't been reaching out because honestly life has been crazy" YET, with all that craziness, I can say I'm thankful for a stable job, a healthy family, and the clients that I have who continue to support my business.

Sooo here's an itty bitty sample of what you missed while I was gone (:

Photo below taken at Summer Slumber Retreat

Models: Dana & Mike

Florals: Brier & Ivy

Photo below taken at Summer Slumber Retreat

Models: Sarah & John

Florals: Brier & Ivy

Photo below taken at Summer Slumber Retreat

Models: Ben & Elise

Florals: Brier & Ivy

Photo below taken at Summer Slumber Retreat

Model: Velvet

Florals: Brier & Ivy

Pictured below is Melanie Morrison of Melanie Morrison Photography

Pictured below is James Young of James Young Photography

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