• Walking into a New Season

There have been so many times the last three months when I’ve said “Shoot! I need to get a blog post up!” and I have every intention of doing it but it doesn’t happen. When it doesn’t happen, I start to think of how much of a hypocrite I am because I have PREACHED that BLOGGING CONSISTENTLY and having consistency in your business is the KEY to success…. and here I am not doing it. Well, a dear friend of mine recently told me “Katelyn… you don’t have to blog like you used to because you put in the time… you dedicated yourself to blogging daily for 8 YEARS and now it’s ok for things to change”. What? Change?! Things don’t need to CHANGE!! I just need to get off maternity leave and then I’ll be back at it…. right???

Wrong. Things HAVE changed. My entire life has changed…. and I’m slowly learning that it’s ok to accept that.  If I’m being completely honest, I haven’t blogged much in this season because there is SO much change happening in who I am. I told Michael and my sister today that it almost feels like an identity crisis and I’m still trying to figure out who I am in this new season. I went from being a workaholic that could hardly imagine being passionate about anything as much as I was about my business to being the momma that stops everything and gives up on the to-do list because Evy is being snuggly and I want it to last as long as possible.  I’ve been blindsided by an squishy, smiley, 12 pound little girl and she’s the best thing that has ever happened to me.

I think what I’m wrestling through is the idea that there was an “Old Katelyn” and a “New Katelyn”.  The “Old Katelyn” had a lot of great qualities. She could GET. STUFF. DONE! She was a master of systems and taught OTHERS how to thrive and grow with her systems! She created content constantly and she blogged like nobody’s business!!! She had a one track mind and she made her ideas come to life! Her business became more successful than she ever imagined and she started educating and teaching in new ways and grew her team!! She did a lot! The “Old Katelyn” couldn’t imagine having a baby because there was literally NO ROOM in her life to slow down and be pregnant.  She loved her life and she loved her success and she loved her freedom.

Now let me introduce you to the “New Katelyn”……

The “New Katelyn” has trouble setting down her 7 week old baby once she falls asleep on her shoulder because it’s the sweetest feeling in the world. She gets stuff done but not as much as “Old Katelyn”.  She actually watches The Voice and This is Us with Michael without her laptop in front of her.  She still loves Instagram but she enjoys posting on her family account more than her main account right now because the more she posts, the more Chatbooks she gets on her little girl and that is the BEST mail!!! The “New Katelyn” is looking forward to shooting her first wedding of the season soon! … But she’s more than ok with only having 14 weddings for the year instead of over 30 like the Old Katelyn had. The New Katelyn is THANKFUL for the Old Katelyn because she grew a business that gave our family the lifestyle that we have now. She’s thankful for the “Old Katelyn” but she still struggles with the thoughts that if “Old Katelyn” doesn’t come back in FULL FORCE, everything will crumble.

This is what I’ve realized recently and what I’m trying to remember and live into daily:

THE OLD KATELYN and THE NEW KATELYN are the same girl.

I haven’t lost myself. I haven’t forgotten how to hustle or work hard or accomplish things. Those gifts that I had before we were blessed with Everly are still there… they just aren’t dominating my life. I’m picking and choosing when to activate those gifts instead of letting them run wide open all of the time and hurt my marriage. That passion for my business? It’s definitely still there… it’s just not the first thing I think about in the morning anymore. My passion for my business has taken a backseat to the love I have for my little girl. That doesn’t mean things are crumbling, it just means things are changing.

Just because my priorities have changed doesn’t mean I have lost my gifts and my abilities that I had before….. but that’s the lie that I believe some days. It’s easy to believe it when you feel like your world has been flipped upside down! The truth is, I’m in a transitional season of figuring out what parts of the Old Katelyn are still going to be a part of the New Katelyn.  I love the New Katelyn so much more than the old Katelyn in so many ways. I’ve become someone I didn’t think that I could be that is only because of the Lord.

So why am I telling you all this? Because I enjoy being honest with you and I always have been. I feel like we live a very transparent and open life and that’s part of the purpose of our business. I think God allows us to share our stories and our journey in order to empower and encourage others and I don’t take that job lightly. So, in this new season of change, there are a few things that I’ve learned and have become a aware of:

  1. When we’re afraid of CHANGE in our lives, we cling to the past because it’s familiar and it’s “safe”. I never want to be the person that clings to the past because I’m so afraid of a changing future!
  2. When we are afraid of change we tend to view things as “all or nothing”! Like, there is either an “Old Katelyn” or a “New Katelyn”. I’m either amazing and productive or I’m a mom… I can’t be both. That’s a lie! The beautiful part of the season that I’m in is that God is taking both versions of myself, combining them and making SOMETHING NEW and that’s so beautiful! 
  3. When we’ve had a good season in the past, it’s hard to believe that a new season will be better than what we’ve already experienced. Well let me tell you… I’m typing this and I have the most beautiful little girl in a swing beside me. Nothing could have prepared me for the love I have for her. Trust in the good of the new season!!! 

Happy Thursday everyone! If this resonates with you… let me know so that I’m not the only one who talks about herself in third person!! :)

xoxo, Katelyn
49 Comments Personal
  1. Nicole Salter reply

    UGH girl I’m so proud of you. Can’t wait to see you blossom in this new season of life. Can’t wait to meet this gorgeous girl one day. I hate change as well but also can’t wait for this season of my own. You are doing SO amazing & should have no mom or business guilt :D

  2. Tina reply

    Yes!! This is exactly how I felt when I had my little girl a year and a half ago. It’s like I was screaming in my head, “where did Tina go?!” And the older she gets and the more cute things she does all the time now, the more I want to stop what I’m doing and just watch her live and explore because I know I won’t ever get this moment back. I just have to say I am thrilled and cannot wait to learn from you and spend more time with you at your workshop this month! XOXO!

  3. Jessica Haley reply

    As a mama myself… this is so true!! Lots of good to come and don’t worry you’ll get back to your old productive self fast enough :)

  4. Ashley reply

    I have been following your blog from the very beginning and I’m not even a photographer! I enjoy the beautiful pictures, reading about your life and your advice and systems have helped me in my job as a teacher! KATELYN YOU ARE AMAZING! I enjoy reading your words. They are so motivating and encouraging. All versions of you are AMAZING!

  5. Jenna reply

    Katelyn! This is beautiful. I think people thought I was crazy at the workshop because of my schedule with my kids. I won’t lie I was overwhelmed when I got home with the things I thought I had to do right then to make my business grow. The workshop experience changed my life and my business for sure but I learned I had to take it all in stride because I am a mom and our schedule is crazy. So while I’m not where I completely want to be with my business right now I know it’s ok and I will get it done it just may not be right now. My kids are in a different season being 14 and almost 12 on Sunday and in a few short years…they will be gone making their lives work. I tear up typing that sentence. So it is ok..enjoy your sweet baby these years fly and the next thing you know you are doing middle school functions and talking about high school classes. Evy is beautiful and she’s loved you can tell!

  6. Becky reply

    Katelyn, I’ve been following your blog since I was 16 years old. You are one of the reasons I have decided to pursue a career in photography! I am so encouraged by your transparency about balancing motherhood and business because I desire to do the same one day – Lord willing! Thank you for being so open and sharing about your life, business, and journey to success!

  7. Gail reply

    SO wonderfully put, Katelyn. You will find that as you get older, and your priority on your family grows, you ease all the more into the New Katelyn/new person you are. As stressful as parenting can be, there’s a wonderful mellowing that happens with it. I had such a similar path into motherhood myself!

  8. Emily Chappell reply

    Ahhh, Katelyn, this made me tear up! I’ve been watching you, your work, and your business for the past four years. The difference is that I started my photography journey after I’d already had children. For so long, I’ve seen you preach blogging, consistency, etc. which are HUGE to business growth, but I was beating myself up because I just couldn’t keep up with all you were able to do. Reading this post basically released me from the guilt I’d carried, and the conflict that I wasn’t a good enough business owner because I had to manage time with my family. Thank you for this post, from the bottom of my heart!

  9. Misty reply

    As the “old” or the “new” Katelyn, you’re still amazing!!!!!!! :D And it can totally feel like things are consuming you as a mom to start out with, but then 3 years later, you wonder where the heck the time went! Enjoy those snuggly moments, momma!!! :)

  10. Michelle reply

    This is something that I have wrestled with so many times, and I have changed again with each additional child we’ve added to our family. The truth is, while I am still ME, so many things that I once held as important to my definition of me just aren’t as important anymore. They haven’t been forgotten – just demoted. It’s okay to not be busy. When you have children, life is so much sweeter when you can slow down. You are doing great – and I think we all knew you would.

  11. Christine Plumley reply

    This was so great (& really hit home!). I appreciate your openness & honesty.

  12. Britney reply

    Katelyn! This is me. This is everything I’ve been feeling and experiencing! Hallie is the best thing to ever happen to ben and I and we are so thankful for the slow down and priority shift. Thank you for being so transparent and honest! You’re a constant motivator and inspiration!

  13. Brianna Rodriguez reply

    I just love your heart and honesty! This completely resonated with me! I’m a mom to a little boy who recently turned 1. Unlike you, I was in the beginning of building my business and quickly after he was born realized how much things would have to scale back. Part of me at first felt crushed, wishing that I could be the go getter and the hustler- busting my butt to get my business thriving like so many other photographers in the industry. But then I realized, I’m in a COMPLETELY different season of life. I’m a wife, a mom, involved in ministries at church and that is okay. My priorities have shifted in ways and I would not go back or change anything about where I am at all. I’m praying for your family, Katelyn. I’m thankful for the transparency you share and the wonderful example you are to others. So snuggle your baby and get that quality time with your husband- this sweet season passes so quickly and you DESERVE to enjoy, love, and remember every single part of it!
    – Brianna

  14. Natalie Kent reply

    I love it! As a mom of 3 beautiful, now grown, daughters, I can relate. I now have a gorgeous 3-month-old grandson, and I too have entered a new season of life – grandparenting. It is okay that all I want to do is cuddle and photograph his cute smile! These moments will last briefly as time flies by quicker and quicker the older we get. It is time to slow life down and enjoy each and every moment of snuggles and smiles! Congratulations on your new lifestyle!

  15. Lauren reply

    LOVE THIS! You are an amazing creative and an amazing mom. I love how honest you are in sharing how your life has changed for the better and how you have dealt with it! You have done a phenomenal job and I have no doubt will continue to do so!

  16. Ashley Ziegler reply

    I’m totally in a new season right now. I’m struggling to find what comes with the new me and what I’m ready to let go of. Life has thrown me so many unexpected turns. I appreciate this blog post and I LOVE following your family account. Your little one is so darling!

  17. Mary reply

    Can’t say thank you enough for sharing! I’ve been a wedding photographer for the last 5+ years and am about to have my first child. Been wrestling so much lately with the ‘change’ that is about to happen and asking myself how to handle this new season of life. This post was so helpful in being reminded that evolving seasons don’t have to mean losing who I’ve been but more letting God continue to shape me with new challenges and joys. So encouraged by your post!

  18. Tanya Bondarenko reply

    I was waiting for this email ever since I found out you were pregnant. I have a 22 month old and my life went just the same when I had him. I started photography when he was 6 weeks and it helped me with my postpartum depression. But boy is it hard to balance it all when you become a mom. Do share more tips on how you do it.

  19. Mandi Mitchell reply

    Love it. Love this post. Love that you are embracing motherhood and taking on this new stage of life and enjoying everything that comes with it. God is good and has each season of our lives for a reason. Welcome to the season of motherhood! It ROCKS!

  20. Marquette reply

    I have loved everything you’ve ever put out. It has all resonated with me. But this new season you are in and what you have to say now are going straight to the center of my heart like nothing before. I know I’m not the same person I was 3 years ago when our blonde little boy joined us, and now I’m a new new Marquette after our sweet girl came. The idea that old me and new me isn’t an either/or choice is encouraging and freeing! Thank you for this!

  21. Paula reply

    Such a beautiful, honest blog post! Thanks for sharing this; it really resonated with me. I had many of the same feelings after having my third baby, but unlike you, my business was just getting going right before I had her. I miss it, but I LOVE getting to hold her while she sleeps, and I LOVE not spreading myself so thin that there isn’t enough of me to go around to my family, and I LOVE giving my 100% attention to my kids during the day instead of always multitasking. As she gets older, I’ll just have to figure out what the balance is. I’ll be praying for you to find that balance as well! <3

  22. ryan manthey reply

    there is nothing greater in the world than being a parent! no job or feeling compares

  23. Liz Cook reply

    Katelyn, this is amazing and so are you! I’ve been following your blog for about 6 years now and just love your honesty. It makes me feel normal! I had my first child, a little boy, four days after you delivered your baby girl- so in some way I feel like I have a friend in this journey when I see your posts about parenting. I know EXACTLY how you feel. I struggle between the old me and the new me and am wondering how to marry the two all while making sure my son gets the best version of me. Thank you for this blog post! It’s helped more than you know :)

  24. Jenna reply

    Ummmm YES! Yes to all of this in its entirety. I went through a very similar situation this past year, except with an injury that left me unable to walk for a period of time, and now unable to carry things. I’m convinced that God uses all things for good and that he’s going to use this new season for his glory, but boy is it hard to believe that sometimes!

  25. Jill Powers reply

    LOVE this!!…and the “new” KK that’s killing it at being a mom AND a business owner!!

  26. Megan Kelsey Photography reply

    Katelyn, this is so encouraging. I feel like I’m entering into a season of my life where I’m hustling and working really hard and I love the perspective of putting in a few extra hours and mental energy now so that I can have a lifestyle later that allows me to have more time for my family once we have kids. I’m still prioritizing my marriage and my loved ones NOW, but it means a lot of early mornings and some jam packed weekdays. I loved reading this and I’m so proud of you!!!

  27. Courtney Massey reply

    You got the nail on the head! It’s very hard for me to trust that I can be a successful business owner AND a great mom.
    Your transparency and encouragement in this blog is exactly what I needed to read today. I’m so happy to see the Lord blessing your family in so many ways.

  28. Natalie Gibbs reply

    Totally feel you on this. I feel like I go through it anew every time I start to book the next year’s weddings (or not… I’m trusting my gut and slowing down now). Motherhood is so hard. Motherhood and entrepreneurship is harder still. Hang in there and listen to your heart!

  29. Jenna reply

    This is exactly what happened to me when I had my first baby four years ago! It totally changed my life and my desires. Now I can’t imagine not being able to be home with my kids almost all the time. I’m totally content with running my photography business on a part-time basis now, because they only stay little for so long and you can’t ever get these years back!

  30. Petro reply

    Katelyn, this brought tears to my eyes. Your honesty has really touched my heart and I want to thank you for that. Keep doing your thing, you are such an inspiration and its sooo beautiful to see the Lord’s love beaming from you!

  31. Jenny R. reply

    Katelyn, Thank you SO much for sharing so transparently…this spoke right to my heart today. Once again, you reminded me to trust the Lord and live fully present in the season I’m in, and that is such a special gift. So grateful for you!!!

  32. Amber reply

    I love this! God has brought you to this point in your life and will keep using you in His kingdom! We’re so excited for you and we’re cheering you on! We’ll be praying for wisdom and peace as God continues to unfold his plan for your lives! Hugs!

  33. Lindsey reply

    Thank you so much for sharing! Your honest posts are always what I need to read! I am in a new season too… I am a homeschool mom of 4 young kids and I am starting a photography business. I know that I am walking where the Lord has me but sometimes it is a lot to juggle. Trusting God for the new future wherever it leads.

  34. Alexa Warner reply

    Yes! This. Is. It!!! I am four months pregnant and having so many of these same feelings. My husband and I LOVE our life, but this very wanted pregannacy has been surprisingly bitter sweet. We have worked so hard and achieved so much – grad school, med school, buying a house, traveling when we want to and this change is scary! I feel ya girl! Reading your posts about being a new mommy are so encouraging. You make me feel like I can do it to – that it’s possible to have it all (at least that is what I am going to keep telling myself). Keep the good vibes coming!

  35. Kristine Brevik reply

    Hey Katelyn,
    Thanks for such an encouraging post. I’m a photographer from Kelowna, BC Canada. Our little girl just arrived and is officially 1 week old tomorrow. It’s encouraging to know I am not alone and that this new journey I am on right now is just where God wants me to be. Thanks for the reminder!

  36. Stephanie reply

    I didn’t read all the comments, so I’m sure someone else has already said this. Oh well :)
    What an immense blessing that you began building this incredible business in a season before you had children. You had the time to make it happen without being pulled in other directions and feeling like you are neglecting your kids. That’s the hardest thing in the world for me. I want to make things happen in my business, I want it to grow, I want it to be successful…but not at the expense of neglecting my kid. So…I only grow in little turtle strides. And I wouldn’t change a thing. Well, maybe to have started this thing before there were kids haha. But there are struggles on both sides, and I absolutely see yours and the tug and pull you face now. I feel like those of us watching you from the outside have absolutely no doubt that your business is going to be just fine. You’ve built an empire, sweet lady, and empires don’t fade overnight. It’s hard to see that when you’re in the middle of it though. You have your priorities right, and I love watching this new Katelyn emerge. It’s even more inspiring.

  37. Lindsay reply

    Oh friend!! It’s amazing how these sqishy little girls steal our hearts!! My Charlie girl has made me the most unproductive AND productive I’ve ever been! I’ve also started to see my photography in a whole new way – the stories I want to tell are quite different than I ever saw before!! I’m so grateful for her and for the tiny portion of time I’ve been able to spend on leave with her! Evy is gorgeous, and I think the new Katelyn is pretty great:)

  38. Allie reply

    Thank you for sharing so openly about this struggle! As a mom of 2, it’s hard finding that “balance” and to even make that transition. It’s hard to feel passionately about two different things and feel like you’re having to choose, but I love how you talk about the old and the new version of yourself and how you can integrate both! I always tell myself that being a mom is so wonderful, but I also love that my kids will know me as something other than a mom. They’ll see that I have other passions and dreams and go after them. I’m hoping that sets a good example of how to pursue what they love. Congrats on your baby girl!! And thank you for your sweet heart, love for the Lord and how you’ve helped so many other photographers! I’m sure this new platform of mom/photographer will be an inspiration to so many.

  39. Cassy reply

    Welcome to parenthood :)

  40. Stephanie reply

    I know how you feel, and this came at perfect time for me. I have three beautiful girls, have been working from home for the last 13 yrs. I am trying to grow my new passion & business, photography, while juggling being a mom of three active girls, a wife to an adoring husband, a girl scout leader, an advocate for my girls who have special needs, a contract closer and someone who has always pout others befire herself. I can not do it all, and have had a hard time excepting that…I used to be able to do it all! What has happened, am I falling apart… No, I just have new priorities and have to know that it is okay for change. My girls are only with me for a short time, as soon they will be heading off to college.
    Thsnks you for the encouraging words, i definitely needed them!

  41. Ann reply

    Katelyn! Thank you for always sharing. I am a mom of 4 and this last little one is our miracle rainbow baby. We had so much change a couple months before she was born (selling our home, moving 8 hours away, struggling to find a new home, restarting my business in a new area) and she had a few challenges when she was born that I found myself clinging to the past and not embracing the amazing future. Not trusting that God has it all taken care of. Since having my daughter I have felt lost and struggling at being 2 different people (business women and mom). I thought I had everything all figured out with my 3 boys. We had a flow. Then my daughter was born and it has been a struggle. I need to embrace the mom and business woman I am and trust. I needed to read your post this morning. THANK YOU! Hugs!!

    btw: Your sweet princess is absolutely adorable!! <3

  42. Christin reply

    Thank you so much for sharing! This is just what I needed to hear today and in my season of change!

  43. Chantal Routhier reply

    so much truth in this !

  44. Karen reply

    I’ve honestly been waiting on this post from someone … a rockstar who has decided to embrace family – I’m really going to enjoy watching this journey – because sometimes for those of us with little ones, it feels like there’s not a voice in the industry for us – like we should either do family or do biz, but not both …. which is unfortunate.

    Go look up the lyrics from “For Good” from Wicked. :)

  45. Melle reply

    Hearing you loud and clear!

  46. Monica Smith reply

    Katelyn, I’ve always thought that change had to be all or nothing. Thanks for a new perspective – my gifts and talents don’t change or disappear. They can just be used in a different way or given a rest so that other gifts and talents can be developed or discovered. God tells us, “Behold, I do a new thing!” Congratulations on your new addition and a new season!

  47. Kerry reply

    Hi Katelyn! This blog post caught my eye- I can relate very much to these feelings. One of my favorite sayings is, “you can have it all, just not all at once.” You’ve got this. Xoxo

  48. Elise reply

    Oh, friend! Speak that truth! Praise God for such beautiful revelations. Thank you for sharing your heart with us in all of this! You are an encouragement!

  49. Robyn reply

    This is exactly what I needed to read today. So…thank you bunches for expressing yourself so thoroughly. You certainly are NOT the only person who speaks about herself in third-person. The Old Robyn, the Not-So-Old Robyn, and the Newer Robyn are all “Me” but with more wisdom, more determination, and more Hope. I know that each version of Me has beautiful, strong character traits but the Newer Me is definitely going through some major changes. Many of these changes aren’t easy to adjust to, but I know for a FACT that they will make me into an even stronger person and, most importantly, a HAPPIER person. I will hold on to the best pieces of each version of “me” and weave myself into the Best Me ever! Thanks again for the motivation and inspiration to embrace Change!

Reply to: