Earlier this year Aryns mom, Justice, saw a few images I posted on my personal Instagram... Fine Art self portraits that I used to express emotions that were important to me and where I was at that place in life. Since then the request was in to do a Portrait Session of her sweet daughter Aryn when the opportunity worked itself out. I was so excited, both to carry out some fun more Fine Art Portrait images but also to spend time with young lady and her mom.
There's something about these two that are special. This past year I had the wonderful opportunity to get to meet them on the set of the Kendrick Brothers most recent film, Overcomer, while it was being shot here in Columbus, Georgia. Aryn was excited to be playing the lead of this film, and her mom, JUST freshly off of a kidney transplant after many years of dialysis, sat eagerly in the wings cheering her baby on as she approached this new opportunity.
Resilience is the word that comes to mind when thinking of these two. Over this past year I've had the blessing of getting to know them, their tenderness and compassion. Justice has walked a road with her health that was and is anything but easy: dialysis, a kidney transplant, brain bleeds, and then an unexpected car accident. And even in this and through this, she kindly CHOSE to walk BESIDE me, encouraging me as my own family member walks through similar health challenges. Resilient. Tender. Loving.
Spending time with these two before the session was beautiful and therapeutic, talking about life, and even at times almost crying about very real hard things that life sometimes asks us to carry. As Aryn sat and listened to Justice and I speak, she spoke in confidence about how she KNEW little over a year earlier that the call her mom received about a possible kidney transplant WAS for her. Soft, quiet, strong confidence that no matter what circumstances where brought through their lives, that God would provide. Even when the car she, her brother and her mother were driving in one late night in August of this year wound up flipping, leaving her pinned in the backseat causing her to have emergency stomach surgery and days of no eating post-op., all TWO WEEKS before the first Overcomer premeire! But what did onlookers see in this circumstance? Not a perfect situation, but a family that loved each other through the toughest times and a girl who didn't see this as an obstacle but a short season that she WOULD get through. Resilience.
Most see this movie Aryn is in and have no idea of the depth of its truth in her own life and in her own family's life. A daily walk. A daily confidence. A daily accepting of all the things that life provides, both hard and joyful. And graciously letting these things transfer into compassion, hope and love.