Thursday, July 18, 2013


My family and I went on an adventure yesterday to get new shoes for Baba, Khai, and Rowan. Mama didn't get to buy any new shoes because the children were too squirrely, but that's another story. I put one stipulation on my children - you may not get anything with a character. Then I set my children free in the kid's aisles to choose their shoes. I gave Khai instructions that his size was 11, so he should look for a box with the 11 on it. He came back to me with these:

I stopped myself before I said anything leading. He tried them on, jumped, ran, and generally exuded childhood glory. 
"Do you really like them?"
"Yes mama, these are my favorite. I want to buy them."
Alright. So, I don't have a problem with him having pink shoes. I think they're lovely. My mother comes over and sees what he has picked out.
"Oh. I don't think so-and-so will like that."
"It's what he picked," I responded. "I didn't lead him. This is what he wants." We have more conversation, and, after my mother tries to talk him out of it by showing him every other shoe in the store, we do indeed buy them. He is so excited to wear them!
And I'm a little worried for him, deep down. He's always been the little boy who wants to wear a dress, or his sister's frilly hat. This isn't even the first pair of pink shoes he's worn (though it is his first pair brand new from a shoe store). I treasure the fact that he feels comfortable choosing what he likes, and that he hasn't been pressed upon to 'be a boy' yet. I worry about these shoes, just a little, though. What will he do if someone tells him these are girl shoes? Why does it matter? I often buy Rowan's shoes from the boy's department without fear.
I just want him to feel like he can be whoever he wants to be. And why do we even have 'boy' shoes and 'girl' shoes? They're just shoes. Rowan is so strong, I know she'll be okay. Khai is so sweet and sensitive, and I know what it's like to be that way and get hurt. I know what it's like to be mistaken for the opposite gender, and to be teased for it. I just don't want that for my kids. I don't want that for anybody.
So, wear those fantastic shoes proudly, little bear. They look great on you, and I love you just the way you are.

Photo Time: POTD #11

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Photo Time: POTD #6

A cropped selfie that accentuates my least favorite feature - my chin. Even though I don't like it, it deserves some love.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Photo Time: POTD #4

Walking around, I happened to poke my head into the dumpster at Half Price Books. It makes me a little sad as a writer to see all these words getting tossed away. :(

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Photo Time: POTD #3

Supposed to be an Ordinary Moment. I like a lot that her lip is super crisp. I need to work on bringing my aperture out to at least 4.0 so that I don't end up with these half soft-focus shots.

Monday, July 8, 2013

Photo Time: Picture of the Day #1 of 365

Found a photo challenge that appeals to me. Today's prompt is 'One Flower'. Voila:

Friday, July 5, 2013

Beginning of Something Fiction-y. Pt. I

She opened her eyes slowly, sensing the bright sunshine as it streamed in through the opening of her shelter. She had grown accustomed to waking up in this way, feeling the light hit her face, warm her body, stir her into rising.
She sat up and lolled her head to the side easily, stretching her long, well-tanned arms up above her head and arching her back deeply. She would drink up this feeling, keep it with her and revel in it when the darkness came. As it inevitably did.
The darkness lasted for months at a time, forcing her into a sort of twilight, an automatic existence of sleeping and eating, of long stretches in front of the fire. There were even longer stretches when she heard the wolves howling, and other, larger creatures prowling about the woods behind her little thicket. Then she sat inside in the darkness, resting her chin on her knees and counting her own breaths.
Today was a warm day, though. It was a day full of sunshine, and thus of busyness. She had food to gather, as well as wood. She would go down to the stream and wash. She would mend her favorite dress today. It would be a good day.
She found her tasks easy and joyful today, and she hummed softly to herself as she carried bundles of kindling over the threshold of her small dwelling. She sat down on the dirt floor and brushed her hands off, her lips pressing up into a smile as she stretched her legs out in front of her. Her sewing basket sat nearby, and she pulled it closer to start her mending, then pushed it away again.
"You'll have to wait," she called to the streams of purple cloth that hung from the rafters. She was already running before she was out of her own circular yard. The fabric of her plain brown skirt flapped against her ankles as she ran, and she laughed aloud just to hear herself. It wouldn't be long before she reached the stream, and she shivered in anticipation of the cool water she would find there.
She stripped down quickly and efficiently as soon as got there, folding her clothes into tidy squares and nestling them up into the limbs of a tree. She took a great deal of pleasure in dipping her toes into the water, pressing her feet down into the soft mud of the bank. She felt intensely peaceful. She waded farther into the water and then knelt, letting the ends of her long chestnut hair brush the surface of the water. She cupped the water in her two hands and, in one swift motion, splashed the water into the hollow of her neck, letting the water stream down in rivulets over her breasts and stomach. She let her head fall back, lowering more of her hair into the water.
The world around her shattered like a pane of glass, cracks first, then big jagged chunks that fell, leaving vacuous blackness in their stead. The shook her head frantically from side to side, willing it to stop, and felt the skin of her arms prickle in fear. Slowly the blackness relented, leaving a single image in her vision - a man.
He was tall with dark eyes and darker hair that curled around the nape of his neck, just brushing the collar of his dark green shirt. He was handsome, she thought to herself, watching as his visage became clearer. He looked rough but clean, and he wore clothes that told her he was more than just a common man. Though her visions were frightening, what she saw usually wasn't. With his image came the man's name, and she tucked it away in her mind. With that the image began to dissipate, and her vision cleared, leaving her in the now-frigid water of the stream.
Blinking twice she stood up and rushed out of the water, gathering her clothes. She forced her clothes on and felt them cling to her wet body. She had to get home quickly, now. The sky was almost dark.

Moving Forward (With Confidence and Purpose)

I have learned a lot in the interim between this post and the last. I've become more hardcore about my photography, I am opening myself back up to the world, and I'm starting to feel myself more complete, more whole. It seems appropriate that this should happen at M - the 13th letter of the alphabet. Half way between the beginning and the end. Even the letter itself - with its vertical symmetry of peaks and valleys - speaks of half way points.
In my photography I am learning more everyday, but staying vigilant in walking the line between interest and obsession. I know more about myself, more about my tendency to throw myself into things, and I'm being very aware. My eyes are open to my own patterns, to the way I interact in my environment, and to the personality types that I tend to attract with my behavior.
In the rest of my life, I have rejoined facebook after more than a year. At times it has still caused me anxiety, but it's also nice to be able to communicate with people I care about, and those who care for me. It will also be a requirement if I wish to start doing photography professionally.
I'm going by Cadence in most social circles now. I still slip up and use my other name (and respond to it) but I know that it will just take time, as it did when learning to use my married name. It makes me smile every time I see my name written on a cup at starbucks, or even when I sign my name on receipts. Some time next week I'm going to make time to go down to the county registrar and turn in the paperwork. It's complete now, and just waiting for a notary to make it official.
I'm starting to get back to taking the kids to playgroup, as well. The sheer number of people I had to be social with had turned me off for a long time, but now I feel like I can handle it better. I still come home from playgroup tired and over-peopled, but at least I don't feel so overwhelmed when I am actually there.
In some of my social circles I have felt like a bug under the microscope. People have been keeping a close eye on me, watching to see if I will have a mental break down or snap out of it and get back to normal. The changes have been more subtle than that, though. They are almost imperceptible to the naked eye. I still laugh, I still cry (maybe I let myself cry a little more than I once did). I can feel the slow changes more than I can see them. But the shades of grey are slowly appearing, like watching an old polaroid develop.