I’ve found a new pet peeve in the past few months, and it has possibly turned into my biggest pet peeve. It is small, little, only a two letter word…and that word is no. However small that word may be however, it has become my least favorite word in the English language, or any language for that matter.

For some reason, everyone thinks I need to be told that I can’t open a business and be successful, that I can’t move somewhere if I don’t know anyone, and that I shouldn’t do this, that, and the other. It’s amazing how the more people say no, the more I doubt my own abilities. I don’t think people realize that I am going to do this no matter what, this is my dream and I will not back away from it. If I fail to follow this dream now, I will forever regret that decision. They also don’t realize however, that it takes people believing in you to be able to stay strong through the times where owning your own business gets stressful. If you don’t believe that I can make it, that’s fine, I don’t expect everyone to believe in me, but stop telling me I won’t make it. Just don’t say anything if that’s how you feel. Am I dumb enough to not have a backup plan? No way, in fact, I have two back up plans. Both of those backup plans however, include graduate school. Do I have something against graduate school? Not at all, I would love to further my education, but I just finished undergrad, I see no reason to run right back to school, or put myself into debt to do so.

“I would rather see myself fail at something I love, then succeed at something I hate.” That’s not to say I wouldn’t be happy with either of my backup plans, but I would be overjoyed and love to have my own business and get to photograph children and families, and capture memories that will be treasured for years to come. Why shouldn’t I take this risk now? I just finished college, I have the rest of my life ahead of me, if I am going to fail, why not take the risk and fail now, while I don’t have anyone that I need to support besides myself?

Back in May, I went to a photography workshop. Most of the women there were married and had children, and I was the youngest person there by far. When we did our introductions, almost all of them said something along the lines of “I have always loved photography, but people convinced me that I should study this and get a steady job doing this (whatever their career choice may be.) When I gave mine, they all said go for it, because they are now trying to find their way into business because they listened to all the no’s and didn’t take the risk. All of the women I met were amazing photographers that will go places, but it made me realize I don’t want to look back 15 or 20 years from now and say “man I wish I had started my business back then.” I am so proud of all of them for going back, but why should I listen to all the no’s and have a reason to have to go back? Why not go from here, live in the now, and take this risk while I have nothing to lose? It’s not going to be easy, I am not stupid enough to think it will be, but it will be worth it, and thats all that matters.

Cause what’s left to lose, I’ve done enough, And if I fail well then I fail, but I gave it a shot. -The Format

And just because I can’t post without a picture, here is one of my little cousin. Her eyes are so gorgeous! I’m jealous! What I do know, is that even though she can’t say it yet, I think she hates the word no almost as much as I do, if not more. And she gets to hear it in Russian and English!