As an unattributed Instagram quote I once read said, "Choose people who choose you." I didn't think about friendship that way until a couple of years ago, when the friendships of my twenties were tested for the first time. I lost a few people, but what I gained in the reaffirmed richness of the relationships that remained was worth so much more than I could have imagined. The beauty that comes from digging deep and breaking free of the shallow bonds of relationships that are pretty on the outside but flimsy within is pretty amazing. It creates room for authenticity and true friendship to flourish.
I have finally begun to find and discern who are my people, the ones who understand and love me unconditionally. The three beautiful souls pictured below are included in that category. I have so much love for them - for their entire extended family, in fact - and the ways they have saved me and brought me back to myself. I love their drive to do more and make meaning out of their lives. I selfishly love that they cook me tasty food. I love their open-heartedness. They are some of the Good Ones, and I don't know what I'd do without them.
I posted some of these photos on Instagram a few weeks ago, with this caption: "Real life: we drove to a beautiful spot during golden hour to snap some family photos, promptly got the van stuck in a foot of snow, spent the next 30 minutes getting unstuck, took one cute family pic, and ended up back at home where I captured some mama-daughter time while checking on the chickens. These are the kinds of photos I love. Laughter, boogers and all."
That pretty much sums it up. Real life. So much love.