Looking to Give

Thank you all so much for the inspiring nominations!  I have certainly enjoyed reading through all the submissions and am humbled by other people’s challenges that they have faced with personal faith, determination, and courage. I wish that I could go around and photograph you all!  Everyone is absolutely deserving.

The more submissions that I read, the more uncomfortable I began to feel about having people “vote” on a winner.  It just didn’t seem to be appropriate to compare other peoples challenges to one another as if one was more difficult than another.  I have a strong belief that we  are each given trials dependent upon our own ability to bear them, and that although one persons trials may appear “larger” or “smaller” than someone else, they are very real and challenging to the individual, and who are we to judge?

So dear readers, forgive me please for rescinding my initial plan.  Its with a prayerful heart that I have chosen to pick a winner myself.

The following is the email that I received from Hayley:

Hi Brooke,

I feel quite selfish nominating our family for this…but I guess not selfish enough because I am totally nominating us! :)

My husband to be exact.  I know that you know our story, but will share it again just in case we have a shot at being a finalist….

2 years ago just before Christmas, we found that my husbands cancer had returned.  Stage 4 kidney cancer, spread to his lungs, liver, rib and remaining kidney (he had one removed when he was first diagnosed 3 years before.)  This type of cancer usually affects men in their 60’s, and was a shock and devastating to our little family.  Adyson was just about 4 and Sienna, almost 2.

1 week after we learned that his cancer came back he got a portocath put in, and since then has been into the cancer center each week receiving immunotherepy treatments.  They make him exhausted (yet he keeps working), they make his chest ache (but he makes time to play with his girls every single night, even his worst nights), they makes his mouth swell and give him cankers (at times he’s had as much as 15).  He never complains, and is the most amazing person I know.

On top of weekly treatments he has to go in for CAT scans every 3 months to make sure that the treatments continue to do their job (which is keeping the cancer at bay, sadly, not curing it, or even shrinking it).  There is no way to explain how terrifying it is to wait for life changing results every 3 months.  And this is something he will have to do for the rest of his life (which I’m praying is a VERY long time!)

Kidney cancer is pretty awful in that the treatment options are few.  Right now there are 4.  And the survival rate for cancer this advanced is just. plain. ugly.

On top of the cancer, a few weeks ago we learned that he has degenerative spine syndrome (a type of arthritis in his back), that makes him experience more pain.  It’s awful to watch him have so many things to deal with, and I often wish that it was me, so he could just feel healthy again.

Now, in reading this over I realize that it sounds a bit “woe is me”.  I want to make it clear that as much as we hate the cancer and the fear, we are soooo thankful for the blessings we have received because of it.  We are closer as a couple.  We are closer as a family.  Our testimonies have been strengthened, and we have learned to rely on the Lord.  We are truly blessed.

We would love to win this because we have learned that we must treasure the time we have together and capture every moment.

Thanks for the opportunity.  (Sorry this is so wordy!)

You are an amazing talent brooke.

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Congratulations Hayley!  I really look forward to working with your family and meeting your amazing husband and adorable girls!  I’d also like to upgrade your session to a “Day in the Life” experience to more fully document all the details of your little family.  Send me an email and we can begin planning out this project!

Happy New Years Everyone!

avatarBrooke Snow is a Lifestyle photographer in Cache Valley, Utah.  Brooke specializes as a Utah Senior photographer, Logan Senior photographer, Utah Family Photographer, Logan Family Photographer, Logan childrens photographer , Utah Childrens Photographer and is a photography teacher who enjoys teaching private photography lessons as well as monthly photography classes in Logan, Utah.

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