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Dear 23 year-old Me | Marci Renee Photography Lifestyle Photographer Warner Robin

Struggles of stepping into motherhood and still loving photography


Hey Marci!

Let me start all of this by saying, you are beautiful. You don't see now, I'm not sure if you ever will...I hope one day we will see it.

I can say it and it does not seem so mean now. **clears throat*** STOP WEARING MATERNITY CLOTHES YOUR BABY IS OVER ONE NOW!!

Now that that is done, I want you to know I know this year is tough. Your whole first year of motherhood! But you have done it and you have kept a whole human being alive, well-fed, and clothed for a year now!! Girl, you are doing big things, don't let anyone steal that victory from you! Right now I need to recognize the small victories.

I am glad you trying to hold that little one as much as possible now because girl, by 15 she rarely lets you get a hug in ever. I am so glad you spent so much time breathing her in, I can still smell her little baby smell now.

Motherhood has taken over all that you are and all that you do. I know you love being a mother but the change has been hard and honestly, I can't tell you it will get easier. Those hard choices you are making now, I promise that are the right ones. You did that thing!

I will say it is ok to love photography still. You won't be a bad mother to enjoy photography and chase after all you want from it.

Friend, there are people out there looking for a photographer who wants moments captured and not posed smiling pictures. Who wants to look like a moment out of a magazine. I know right!! Don't comprise your talent to just get clients, that will cause you to resent photography. You can create art with clients you have, trust me they love it.

You are worth it! Don't forget who you are and don't allow it to be lost. You can be both a photographer and a mom. You are talented and you create beautiful work! Go after your clients with confidence and don't be afraid to charge them!

Change is happening and will continue to take place. Allow it, don't resist it. Every ounce of it is needed. It will hurt and honestly, it will break you but what you will become from it, will be crazy in love with yourself.

Learn and absorb all that you can about photography. Pick up your camera AT LEAST once a day and never let off that shutter button. This is a time you create some absolutely beautifully timeless work.

I'm in your corner and I love you,


These images were created when I was 23. These are my interruption of a self-portrait at the time. I remember writing these letters wanting to remember my emotions and feelings. I wanted a honest raw images of myself and my thoughts. Though it seems so far from me now, I struggled with stepping into motherhood. My daughter was now my first choice in all that I did but the past life that I had less than 2 years ago still seemed too close and tangible. It was hard to let it go. I think most new moms struggle with this change and it's completely normal. I stopped doing so much of what I loved to be a mother that I began to lose my identity. I didn't recognize myself outside of my title 'mom'. I learned that photography was not who I was, but something I loved to do. The same as motherhood, I loved being a mom but I wasn't only a mom. Once I found peace in the separation of me from my loves, I found myself.


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