as a mom i find that one of my biggest goals and challenges is helping my kids be comfortable with who they are and to always be comfortable in sharing how they feel no matter how difficult and scary it can be to do so. this is important to me because i struggle with this, personally. i am not comfortable in my own skin. i am not comfortable communicating my feelings. i believe my feelings are not important or that my feelings show how insecure i am so, instead, i try not to communicate them. all of this out of fear and being vulnerable. i fear being vulnerable. i sit back and wait for others to take charge as if my own feelings and ideas are worthless. i don’t want this for my kids.
i want my kids to know that sharing feelings is scary but when you share them that is when you become empowered and happy. don’t hold back like i do. don’t wait for others to direct you in life, direct yourself. life is full of many struggles so if i can help my kids overcome this one early then that is one less thing for them to be challenged with as an adult. i do believe that challenging our vulnerability and shame is our key to happiness. those that are truly happy don’t let the two hold them back, they tackle it head on!
my son loves to wear dresses, loves to paint his nails and recently applied fake nails to his fingers. there is so much fear in society about boys dressing like girls. i embrace and love the fact that my son loves to explore his imagination and encourage him to do so. children are not born with fear, we give it to them. dressing up is a way for children to role play, be creative, explore their imaginations and a way to share their feelings. i want to encourage this as much as possible with no fear.
today i am battling with my own fear of sharing my feelings with someone and not knowing what the outcome of that will be. i fear the worst (my comfortable place to go). so while i am dealing with these fears on the inside i will spend my day praising my kids for sharing theirs.
In class on Thursday we had the privilege to attend the lecture from Amanda Koster of SalaamGarage. She shared an experience that really touched me especially the quote “I didn’t even know he was my neighbor”. It was about a young boy who’s family, except for his two, younger, siblings died of HIV|Aids. She spent a lot of time with this young boy and was able to tell his story for the NGO. A neighbor woman heard his story, because of Amanda’s work, and said “I didn’t even know he was my neighbor”. She happened to be a women of means and was able to help support the 3 young children from that point forward. He was her neighbor but she knew nothing about him.
This lecture along with the quote that inspired my last weeks project from Nancy Ford Cones (“It is a dead sure thing that if you cannot make pictures in or around the home, it is positively hopeless to go abroad and find them.”) made me think of my home, the community in which I live. I thought of all the neighbors I have and realized how few I knew anything about. I used my community Facebook page and asked for volunteers for my assignment this week, there were 2. I then met with them, and spent time talking to them, getting to know them before I even picked up my camera. What was interesting is they don’t know each other and they (and me too) live within walking distance of each other and both people have a HUGE musical interest. G’s home had one wall, floor to ceiling, filled with CD’s and JP had 2 walls dedicated to albums. I’m glad to know my neighbors.
“It is a dead sure thing that if you cannot make pictures in or around the home, it is positively hopeless to go abroad and find them.” ~ from a book I’ve been reading lately called Against the Odds: Women Pioneers in the First Hundred Years of Photography. Quote by Nancy Ford Cones.
I I was really inspired by this quote because I found photographing in my home very difficult. I can go into most any environment and take photos but when it comes to mine, I struggle. I’ll take photo’s of my home and family for others but not often. So, this photographer and her quote really inspired me to take another look at my environment and photograph it. Here are the photos I submitted this week for class.
I found myself in a vulnerable position this week. I’ve been dealt a life that has me protecting my emotions, my feelings. I am a sensitive person so often wear my thoughts, feelings and emotions on the cuffs of my sleeves but circumstances in life had me toughen that up a bit so in fact I’ve been cold and withdrawn. Recently, I came in contact with something that had me chipping away at this barrier. Not fully breaking it down but enough where I put those emotions, some of them, back out on the cuff of my sleeve. They didn’t have to be there long before they were stomped on and crushed once again and now this time the barrier is stronger and more protective. I’m unsure what it would take for me to trust and open myself up again.
Brene Brown talks about the power of vulnerability here and how it leads to happiness. So, I am going back and listening to this incredibly powerful lecture and hope that I can somehow find my happiness in this.