I have literally had the words “Coming Soon!” on this blog page for over a year. I think for some reason I have always thought I had to have something monumental to say, and I had to say it perfectly. That mindset has attached an anxiety to writing that I don’t want to be ruled by anymore. I finally have the courage to put my thoughts to words, so I’m going to share. To be real, I’m probably going to overshare, because that’s who I am (you can ask my husband.) I don’t think what I say in this post will somehow change the world, but I can promise you it will be real & authentic, and I think we need more of that.
I want to share both from my personal life and my photography in this space. As many of you know, I recently went through a miscarriage, and I will be sharing my experiences and emotions with that in later posts. I hope my words bring comfort to others going through similar challenges, or at the very least, let someone know they are not alone.
Let me start at the beginning, with a brief introduction. I am Nicole Katheryn Christiansen, formerly Nicole Katheryn Oxley-Turco (you can probably see where I got my business name.) Both last names I’ve had to spell out for pretty much everyone I meet. But I’m also proud of both names, and the people they connect me with. I married my husband & bff, Adam, in May 2014. He is the Pritchett to my Dreamer (Modern Family reference), the Jim to my Pam. He is is the most supportive, and he encourages me to chase all my crazy dreams. I was born in Florida, grew up in Texas, frequently visited my dad in Nevada, and now live in American Fork, Utah. You can bet I use all those states to draw a connection with people I meet.
I’m going to skip past all the things I love to do, and try to tell you who I am, which is no small feat in a two dimensional space. I am someone who feels deeply. I have a lot of empathy (arguably too much based on my cry record during “This Is Us”), but that’s okay because it helps me connect with people – which I believe is the very foundation of life. I will celebrate your joys, mourn your struggles, and validate your frustrations. My instant and deep empathy is both a strength and a weakness. Can I be over the top? Definitely. Too emotional? You bet. But for the most part, this empathy allows me to connect, support, and love freely & easily.
I am also someone who finds joy in building up others. I feel like I have this magic ability to see people as the superheroes they really are, that they can’t always see for themselves. I know I see this with friends and family members all the time. I feel so confused that they don’t see the beautiful, strong, and capable person I see. My super power is to tell them what I see. It seems simple, but so many kind things people need to hear go unsaid.
Maybe it will seem vain to point out two of my strengths in an effort to show you who I am, but I hope not. I hope you see this as me being self-aware and vulnerable. We need to be able to identify our strengths, so we can use them for good. What value can you offer to the world? How can you lift up others? Maybe it’s something as tangible as baking, or maybe it’s harder to describe like the way you can calm people down and lift their spirits.
We all have something to give.
If you struggle with finding your own strengths, let’s have lunch and I will proceed to tell you all the amazing things about you. There is enough negativity in the world. Let’s be kind & loving. Let’s be authentic & real. Let’s be strong.
Beautiful pictures of me & my love by Fen’amber Cullimore