Growth and Overcoming Fears…

Back in March (on the 8th, I believe) I posted a blog about having joined the Wayne County Chamber of Commerce. (Has it really been that long????)  I am so glad that I did.  I have met some of the nicest people in Wayne County; and we all have one thing in common…We want to see Wayne County prosper while growing our businesses!

Since then, I’ve taken a trip to Northern California and Eastern Nevada and shot a TON of images.  I stayed with my dad and step-mom (Bobbie-Mom) and they carted me all over the place.  On Wednesday, June 2, we were at the gas station in Napa fueling up for our trip to San Francisco when I got a call from the Small Business Center at Wayne Community College.  I won the “Innovation” award for small business, 2010.  To say it was hard for me NOT to jump out of the car and do a happy dance in the gas station parking lot is an understatement!

So we fast forward to June 17, the Chamber’s Business After Hours, and I’m not only presented with my award, but have met some really great people, one of whom invited me to a Business Builders meeting.  My contact had mentioned the possibility of needing a photographer to get up on the roof of the local mall to shoot fireworks on the weekend of the 4th of July.  Of course, I was interested!!!  How could I not be?

Johnny and I both attended the Business Builders meeting, and have decided to join the group.  We’ve met more great people, and spoke with our contact at the mall, who again indicated she needed us to shoot fireworks.

As always, one thing leads to another, and we did, actually, end up shooting the events at the mall.  The big scary for me was that 30 foot straight ladder through the hole in the roof.  Now, anyone that knows me also knows that I am absolutely petrified of heights.  However, I did overcome my fear of flying when I went to California and back, and I had spoken via email with my good friend, Sandra, about the whole ladder issue. She thought if I could overcome that fear of flying, surely I’d get over that ladder issue.

She told me to keep looking up, both on the way up and the way down from that scary ladder.  I don’t mind saying that when I first saw it, my internal organs pretty much turned to Jell-O, but by God, I was going up that ladder, getting on that roof and shooting those fireworks if it killed me. (And in my mind, it WAS going to kill me….)

My guide went up first, then my equipment, then it was my turn.  I took a deep breath, and put my foot on the first rung of the ladder from hell.  I started climbing.  The entire climb up, Sandra’s voice echoed in my mind, “Just keep looking up. Just keep looking up.”  Before I knew it, I WAS up…Granted my hands were shaking, but I was up there.  Those shaky hands set up my equipment and before I knew it, I was all over that roof, shooting pictures with my Blackberry so that I could email them to Sandra to show her I was every bit as brave (or foolish) as she believed me to be.

While setting up, my mind continued to drift back to the not-so-immediate future; How in God’s name was I going to get back DOWN that ladder without breaking my neck, or other important bones in my body.  Soon it was dark, and time to get down to the business at hand.  For about fifty-minutes, I shot fireworks.  And I mean, “in your face” fireworks…I don’t care what anyone says…the roof is the be all-end all of seats in the house for shooting them!

All too soon it was over, and our guide was there.  We dropped the equipment and all of a sudden, it was my turn to get down that crazy ladder.  I really don’t know HOW I did it.  Somehow, my foot found that first rung, and, again, Sandra’s voice was in my head throughout the entire decent; “Just keep looking up. Just keep looking up.” Before I knew it, I was safely on the ground, yet another fear-demon exorcised from my psyche!

Sandra and I both feel that there is some symbolism in that crazy ladder.  Since then I’ve had two really great inquiries regarding my work, and I’m just as excited as can be.

Pictures below:

Until Next Time……