Every now and then, I get to do photos for someone that has an incredible story to share. I'm sure everyone has their own testimony of one fashion or another. However, it's not often that I'm aware of them. Even less often when the person is someone where I've known most of the family since I was a little kid. So being able to take the family photos for Kim was pretty special to me.
I can still remember seeing photos of Kim's daughter Bailey when she was much younger. Kim was always sharing the stories of their latest challenges as Bailey continued to battle Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia. What stood out to me the most as I read those posts was how Bailey looked. Not the fact that she had no hair due to the chemo. It was how she had the BIGGEST smile. Here was this little girl in the fight for her life and she really appeared to have the most incredible, positive attitude.
The first time I met her in person was at the Black and Gold Ball a couple of years ago. Her hair had sprung back and she had grown. I'm never good with names, but pretty good with faces. Soon as I saw that smile, I knew who that little girl was. The entire evening, she exhibited the same outstanding vibe that she conveyed in all her photos.
So when Kim was looking to get some updated family pictures done, I was felt extremely honored she askedme. I was really looking forward to capturing Bailey's essence now that she was cancer free and in remission with no signs in the past 3+ years. I had not seen her since that Black and Gold Ball a couple of years back so didn't know quite what to expect. What I ended up getting was a jovial teenager who could not have been more pleasant.
What started out as a family shoot, really morphed into a session revolving around Bailey. Oh don't get me wrong...we definitely got some good family shots, but Bailey's photos stood out the most. Years after having moments where it was touch and go, she had blossomed into a beautiful young lady excelling in sports AND an honor student. No, you can't see all that in the pictures. What you can see is that same ray of light whose infectious positive attitude rubs off on everyone she meets.