This past weekend I had the wonderful honor of getting to photograph a St. Baldrick’s event in the Bridgeport neighborhood of Chicago. If you are unfamiliar with the St. Baldrick’s Foundation, it is a volunteer driven charity that seeks to conquer childhood cancer and every year thousands of ‘shavees’ volunteer to shave their heads for donations to the foundation. As of right now, volunteers for the foundation have raised almost $22 million dollars in 2012! Amazing, right?
Well, even more amazing is that this year my spouse organized her own St. Baldrick’s event! This was her 2nd year shaving her head for Baldricks and this time, she really took it to the next level. She put SO much work into getting this event off the ground and getting donations for the cause. And I was, honestly, so proud just to be there at the event, to support her, but I have to say…watching her in action truly humbled me. It reminded me of one of my favorite things about her: That she is a giver, through and through.
My spouse is a true giver, since the day I met her, almost 4 years ago. Not just because she would drive 40+ miles (and back!) just to see me on any given day, every single week, and all those wonderful romantic things, but also because she has always put others before herself. Always. And it is such an amazing thing to witness. She runs out into the street to help two elderly ladies who have been in a car accident, she tends to injured on the side of the road in the middle of the night, she just gives. She gives and never even thinks to take.
Watching her put together this event, speaking on stage, getting her head shaved, and making this event a total success, raising over $5,600 for the foundation…I was in awe. In awe that the giving never stops for her. I was not only proud, but completely inspired. Inspired to become more of a giver in my life. To take less and give more in all the parts of my life. To give more in our own relationship, to give more with my family, to give more with my friends, to give more with the puppies (they could use a little extra playtime or cuddles more than I need to watch that extra episode of The Real Housewives!), to give more to my community and to absolutely give more through my work. Being married to a giver has moved me to become a better person: A better spouse, a better daughter, a better friend, a better photographer, and just…a better giver in everything I do.