my best friend | dunedin fl family photographer

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lifestyle family photography on honeymoon island


I could feel the gentle breeze from the Gulf and the sand from Caledesi Island between my toes. I could hear the sound of the waves and our kids playing in the water. I looked over and smiled as I saw them all talk about politics and football. I relaxed back in my chair, closed my eyes, and took a deep breath to breathe it all in and let it all out as a sigh of gratefulness. My best friend. Her husband who I watched her fall in love with way back in high school (and who is also one of my greatest friends). Her parents that I adore. The love of my life. Her kiddos, that I love like my own, loving my sweet baby boy that I had waited so long for. In one of my most favorite places. I knew, in that instant, this was one of my happiest days. One of those days I will always look back on. It was simple. It was us. It was perfect. I wondered if there was anything more perfect than being at the beach with those in your inner circle.

I can’t remember if it was before or after that day when we did their family session, but I remember, right at the end, distinctly remembering how happy I was for these people I love so dearly. Watching Andrea look at Brad…high school sweethearts. I’ve seen them at their best and at their worse. And here they are. In love. I watched Andrea as she full body laughed at me and Brad. I saw how she looked at Brad. How she loves him truer, deeper, today than she did all those years ago. I saw the person she had turned into. The same person she has always been, but somehow even more well worn into her own skin…comfortable…herself. Yet, she has always been those things. It’s hard to explain. I looked at her mom and dad and how they loved each other and their little family. How they have always been the most “normal” family I know (which…knowing them…they are laughing as they read this). Then there’s J & B. Their littles that aren’t so little any more. That I have watched grow into these joyful, heartfelt, kind, passionate, empathetic, feisty, loving, strong, kiddos that love and talk to their parents. Every single one of these people I love so much somehow are getting better and better with every year that passes. I am not exactly what I did in life to deserve having a best friend like this, but I am thankful for it every single day. The funny thing is, life has us so busy that connecting these days is hard. We have always gone through periods of connection and periods where we barely talk, yet, I have never felt like a thing has changed negatively towards us. I tease her that she needs to remind every one that I am her best friend or that she needs to text me every now and then just to say that very thing. But, truly, I know that no matter how many days we go without seeing each other and talking, the truth remains, she is my best friend and I hers. Right, Andrea? ;) I am just waiting on the day we can be neighbors. However, I’m sure it won’t be until a beach is involved.

Do most grown ups talk about their friends like this? Just me?

Andrea has been there to tell me everything is going to be okay since fourth grade when I cried on the last day of school because I just knew nothing was going to be the same as we went into middle school. And as I cute my bangs incredibly short in high school. And as I cried as we graduated high school. And as I cried on her wedding day. And when I cried as I struggled with infertility. And as I became a momma. And as I struggled with depression and anxiety. And every other big event since high school (we were not yet best friends in 4th grade but she does like to remind me of how I cried on that day). She has also had to tell me to take up for myself an equal amount of times. Thank you Andrea. Thank you.

So much love,

Cilla

PS…Would you love family pictures like this of your most special people? You don’t have to be my best friend for us to get love filled pictures like this! You can book your session or ask any question you may have by contacting me HERE. I cannot wait to hear from you! xo