I am only human.. and I was scared

I know, you guys have been wondering where have I been.

I am finally in a position when I can actually sit down and put a few words on the paper ( or on the blog ) and tell you what has been happening.

First of all I don’t want to write this as a sob story, I don’t necessarily want you guys to feel sorry for me ( although, words of encouragement go a long way in this situation ), but I want to be as transparent as possible and put some wrongs to right, while I still save as much time as possible for catching up with editing. So buckle up, this will be one hell of a ride and boy, where do I even start.

This year has been one hell of a lesson, first started with my iMac packing up on me just as the wedding season really started and I had a neat little queue of weddings to edit, that obviously threw me in bit of a panic mode, as while I was waiting for everything to be fixed, I kept shooting more and more weddings and this neat little queue started to be bit of a flood.
It was hard being unable to actually work, but even harder letting my couples down and telling them repeatedly that their photos are not ready yet. Somehow I managed to catch up mid summer tho and I felt like nothing could bring me down now, this is it, smooth sailing from now on.
July and August been the busiest months I’ve ever had and I shot 13 weddings in those two months and I was going through the photos from the first half of July when I started to get sick. First I got the worst sciatica that stopped me from being able to sit for longer than 5 minutes, as soon as I sorted that out.. tooth ache from hell, dentists visits, wrong dosage of painkillers ( don’t even ask about that one) .. as soon as tooth ache was gone, migraines, belly related issues, one very personal one I am not ready to share with everyone just yet and so the list went on. I tried to keep editing throughout that, but there were days when I could only lie in bed and either sleep or cry all day long in pain.. but this was still nothing compare to the pain that was about to come.

As most of you know I love my dogs with my whole human being, every fibre of me is filled with love for, first Jim who died just little over year ago and now my Oswald.
As some of you know - I am never planning on having human babies and as very few of you know - aside the fact that I don’t want human babies, I have actually been told by doctors yeaaaars ago, that I wouldn’t be able to have one. So basically yes, my dogs are my babies and I would give my life for them. Honestly.
So when I was walking Ozzie in a park and suddenly he crushed into my legs and had a seizure my whole life came crushing down, because …I had been here before with Jim.
I knew staffies are prone to brain tumours, I knew seizures don’t start randomly over certain age and I had that gut feeling which was telling me that something is terribly wrong.
It took multiple visits to multiple vets, few misdiagnoses, a trip to supervets in Godalming just for someone to tell me what I knew from the very first moment that day in the park. It was a brain tumour, prognosis without therapy 2 max 3 months, chemo was not the best way forward, because of the area in the brain, surgery was not advisable either, so the only option was radiotherapy.
We got the diagnoses on Thursday, on Friday we went to meet Ozzie’s oncologist and on Monday he started his treatment. He had a treatment daily, 100 miles away from our flat ( most of it on m25, those of you who drive.. know ), he got shaved, he had the IV in his leg the whole time so they could put him under anaesthetics as fast as possible, he got tired, grumpy, moany, he wasn’t the happy boy he is normally, he looked like he wanted to give up, as soon as we would get home, he would sit here and cry for hours, at night he would need to go to the toilet every hour or so because the steroids were messing up his stomach, if i wasn’t giving him undivided attention, he would cry even more… and he would sound like a human baby.
I couldn’t sleep properly, I couldn’t eat, think, work, function, shower, adult.. anything. I was on autopilot. Wake up every morning, drive to Essex, drop him off, have a nap in my Corsa, wake up with the alarm, pick him up, walk him, drive home, walk him, play with him until he gets sleepy again and falls asleep for at least hour or two and me too… and repeat the very next day.
While this all was happening, somehow the world didn’t just stop ( I know, shocking )
People expected their photos, people messaged me about their upcoming photoshoots and weddings, people had questions… and none of them heard back from me, because frankly, I was paralysed with fear.
Fear that I will loose my best friend, my baby and my family.
Fear that I will loose my business
Fear that I will not be able to afford rent, Ozzie’s treatment, food?
Fear that I will be homeless, friendless, alone.
Fear that the only solution will be to give up.
Fear that for the first time in my life I will not find a way out of this.

Every time I would try to go and reply to one message, 3 more would come through, 3 more problems and 3 more reasons for anxiety to kick in and paralyse me even more.

The thing is I know I haven’t handled the situation well, the truth is I really wish I was stronger and done better. But as much as I can wish for things.. the situation is what it is and there’s nothing I can do now to change how I handled things over the past few months. I pride myself in being the person who can troubleshoot most of the things that can go wrong at weddings and I hate the fact that over the last couple months, I have been the problem and couldn’t troubleshoot myself and for that I am very sorry.

So now you know what has been happening. As I said in the start, I haven’t written this so you would feel bad for me, it was more of a way how to give you the whole picture, because I know it’s very easy to just assume the worst.
I am working my way through all the weddings as fast as I can and I’m actually enjoying the editing more than I have in years.

Everyone who is still waiting, please don’t hate me, your photos will be with you soon and I am hoping from the bottom of my heart that they will make up for the delay in getting them.
Everyone who is thinking about having me as your photographer, please don’t give up on me.
Everyone who is here for the gossip, I truly hope you never get in this position yourself - and if you do, I hope that you have an amazing circle of friends and family around you, who can help you stay above the deep.

and to EVERYONE, love you lots,
Nat x