I’ve heard it said a thousand times: “Things come full circle.” I get it. I know it happens, but I have never been more aware of it than I am right now. Maybe it’s just that I’m old enough to witness it happening in my own life now. I’m not sure but whatever the reason, I’m telling you, it’s true. Me, being here, writing for a parenting website is exactly what I’m talking about.
Years ago, before I had even used the word blog more than a half dozen times and before I would have even considered myself a writer, I applied for an actual job blogging for a parenting website. Suffice to say, I got the job (go figure) and since then, I have not only used the word blog a half a million times but I have written for a great many publications (online and beyond), and even started a few of my own. Not to mention squeezing in writing a few books. Life can be funny like that.
Writing to moms about photography was how it all began. Considering my background as a photographer (and not a writer) the topic was a perfect point of entry. After a few years, I transitioned myself from the motherhood space into a broader one that included any and all women with a passion for photography. The decision to drop the mom label was very deliberate, for no real reason but to encompass a wider demographic. Well, that, and truth be told, I was pretty much done talking about the motherhood stuff.
I turned down assignments where I had to address moms. I shied away from calling myself a mom blogger. I wanted to forge ahead into a creative space where being a woman felt more expansive than motherhood seemed to allow. That didn’t mean I wasn’t embracing motherhood in my daily life. And of course, I loved (and still love) my children. And yes, like so many others, I found great companionship and support within the mother community I found online. Even still, in my own quiet way, I tried to keep my autonomy. That was until I was asked to write an entire book about photography … for mothers.
How I went from dreading the thought of the whole thing to signing the contract and then eventually, enthusiastically pouring my entire mama heart and soul into it is a story covered in the intro to my book Elevate the Everyday: a Photographic Guide to Picturing Motherhood so I’ll spare you the details. [Insert shameless self-promotion here] You can read it for yourself if you order your copy today from Amazon. My shifting process isn’t the crux of the story. It’s what comes next is what brings things full circle, which is what I promised from the start.
After writing my book and reflecting on the past 15 years of my motherhood journey, it hit me that with each passing day, I’m becoming a veteran at being a parent. Sure, I’ve still got a grade-schooler in the house and a few years left to go before my teenager heads to college, and I realize I have a lifetime of motherhood in an entirely new way ahead of me, but right now, today, I’ve experienced a vast spectrum of motherhood and I think that qualifies me as an expert (or near-expert) in the field. It all made me realize that I’ve got more to say on the subject than I thought. In fact, being a parent to a teenager has opened up that can of conversational worms, and I can’t seem to stop talking about it. Are you beginning to see that full circle coming around?
So, here I am, sharing my thoughts (and of course my photographs) and speaking my mind on this next chapter of motherhood. The one where everything looks somehow new and different. The one that I want to examine and explore and air out right here on a parenting platform, just like the old days. That’s what Reframed is all about. And what is likely the best part of this entire story for me is how my daughter, Julia, a sophomore in high school, is going to be joining me here. Because how can I possibly talk about life with a teenager without her being able to chime in? It’s seems only fair.
Reframed is about perspective. Mine, hers, yours.
Things may come full circle but the circle never really ends. I am so excited to be able to share this next part of the circle with my oldest daughter and with all of you. Thanks for having me (and Julia). It’s going to be awesome.
Now, it’s your turn. Because Julia and I are really excited to meet you, we would be honored if you introduced yourself. We’d love to get to know you. We’re all in this together so why not get acquainted?
For more about Tracey and how she elevates the everyday, visit her at traceyclark.com.