If you are part of a marriage where both spouses work outside the home, the following probably sounds pretty familiar… You both return home at the end of the workday, and at some point in the evening, maybe at dinner, or when you’re settling into bed, you alternate turns asking and answering, “How was your day?” And unless you and your spouse work in the same field, your answers likely include a lot of specifics and jargon that you’ve tried to learn out of a genuine love for your spouse and interest in how they spend half or more of their waking hours. We may even be able to toss some of the terms around like we actually know what we’re talking about.
But if we’re honest, it can sometimes be difficult to truly appreciate what our spouse does at work. Something tends to get lost in the translation, and we sometimes find ourselves feeling a little out of the loop when our spouse is trying to describe a particular project they’ve been working on, or some of the more industry-specific nuances of their day.
We can even end up with pretty big misconceptions about our spouse’s work. Moment of confession: before the first wedding I shot with Diana, I definitely appreciated the technical and artistic skill that went into wedding photography, but I had no idea how physical a wedding day was as a photographer. I must admit that I thought, very incorrectly, that it was probably a pretty easy and relaxing way to spend a Saturday. Boy, did I learn my lesson on that one!
Shooting a wedding is extremely physical (and I say that as a guy who regularly works ten hour days in the sun on a construction site as a commercial electrician)! You definitely FEEL IT the day after shooting a wedding. You spend 8 hours straight on your feet, with about 5 pounds of camera in your hand or around your neck and another 15-20 pounds of gear slung over your shoulder. And your brain is working the whole time too. Thinking about the next shot, keeping up with where you are in the timeline of the day, etc. BUT it is extremely FUN and rewarding to serve the bride and groom and provide them with lifetime memories by capturing all the different moments of the day.
So, like I said, the first time I went to shoot a wedding with Diana exposed many of my misconceptions about the work that she did, and showed me many areas in which I was weak and she was strong. Which is AWESOME! I have loved having the opportunity over the last three wedding seasons to go to work with my wife, observe and APPRECIATE the ways in which God has gifted her, work alongside her, LEARN from her, meet and love on some wonderful couples, and gain not only a deeper understanding of what she does when she photographs a wedding, but also the shared memories of the days we’ve spent photographing weddings together.
It is a rare and beautiful gift I’ve been given to have the opportunity to come alongside my wife in her work. I’ve seen so many of Diana’s strengths shine through in what she does, especially on a wedding day. She is the biggest advocate for her couples and their vision of the day, and she shows up prepared to help make their wedding day wonderful and memorable. She helps them feel comfortable not only in posing for portraits, but also by staying on top of the schedule for the day, thereby alleviating much of the organizational stress of the day from the bride. Her love for people truly shines, as she shares in the joy of her couples and serves them through beautiful photography and keeping the day well organized along the way.
In working with my wife, I have seen these gifts shine, and I have learned them from her. She has taught me photography skills, of course, and my proficiency in that department has greatly improved, but it is the more unexpected lessons that mean the most to me. I have learned how to better love and serve others and to value organization and use that to serve others, especially a couple on their wedding day.
I recognize that it is uncommon to get to work side-by-side with your spouse like this, and I’m blessed to have the opportunity to do so, and encourage anyone reading this to take any opportunity they get to see your spouse in action at their work. You just might get to see the things that made you fall in love with them in a whole new way.
*We have learned that we work best together as team in marriage and photographing weddings, and that is why we are a husband and wife team serving Hampton Roads, Virginia and beyond.