The rest of my website can be found at www.melisspeifer.com. I will be switching to WordPress this fall so am simply copying and pasting here for an easier transition then.
All of these photos just make me smile 🙂 They have meaning like pretty, portrait, work doesn’t. (Though I do adore a beautiful portrait.) These photos are the result of me just playing around the other night with some story making. Summer evenings, with my girls, and little guy are beyond precious to me. They’re rare. They contain so many moments that I don’t want to forget. They are why I make photos in the first place. THIS is the reason that I am traveling toward the world of lifestyle and story telling photography. I want to give other families these memories too…not just pretty portraits.
The story behind the photos:
The oldest pictured is my oldest. She’s almost 17. If you do the math…you’ll realize just how young I was when I gave birth to her. To make a long story quite short, I placed her for adoption. Through a twist of fate and some divine intervention, my aunt and uncle, two states away were able to adopt her, and raise her, and give her everything I couldn’t. We always kept her adoption very open. She always knew me as her birth mom. We saw each other nearly every year–either I would go there to visit, or they would come here. As she got older, all of the happiness that used to be there when we would tell her about all the people, and family, that loved her so deeply, turned to resentment. As the teenage years took over, so did the hurt. I felt it and good Lord, I understood it. (As if being a teenager isn’t difficult enough…now, add in knowing you were adopted. I can’t imagine, fully, her deep sense of abandonment and total feelings of loneliness–all I know how to do is empathize and try to feel it, in order to try to understand it more. All of this really brings me back to when I was her age…and, pregnant with her. It’s quite the full circle, if I do say so myself 🙂 All of this, for me, comes pretty easily. Being there, where she needs me, feels just the same as being there for my younger daughter. There is no difference in that maternal nature and instinct. It just never fades.)
Anyway, with her being older, the trips here have become so much simpler. It’s just a three hour flight. My home is, and always has been, her’s too. She has a favorite coffee mug here. I’m getting to know her favorite foods and dietary needs. I’m learning where she likes to shop, and about her quirky sense of humor. I know about allll the blankets she likes to sleep with and I love that when she is here…we talk, and, we laugh and we cry. I LOVE hearing everything about her life back home. And it just feels so, normal. And easy. Now, I’m hoping I am finally able to be, and give her, what she needs–and to help her parents too. I can’t imagine being them and seeing someone you’ve raised from just a tiny baby struggle so much. I watch it from afar–but, that’s just where I am. Afar. Now, I’m getting to not just know her…but to really know her.
Anyway…when she is here, in her Minnesota home, I cherish every moment. Every. Little. Moment. These photos are so fun for me. Her last night here, during this past trip, was really, actually, like most nights here. After the little brother went to bed, and stopped annoying his sisters…the snacks came out. And so did the total weird, goofiness. And the huge laughs. Andall the ‘wth?’ moments. And the tv went on…whether it was Keeping up with the Kardashian’s, the X-Files, or Sharknado 2, it was usually only background noise as the girls chatted on Instagram and Facebook and Tumblr and Snapchat. Then…bed time, and conversation, and laughs, and maybe a little sleep too.
These photos are just a snippet of her last trip here. Every time I look at them, I smile. They make me smile deep down. They just bring me back to the messy counters, and the sounds, and smells.
They are life and even if these photos only represent just a little part of it…it’s really so, much, more.