NOW that I have your full attention, before you throat punch me, let me explain...
It is a MAN's job to support you relentlessly.
It is a MAN's job to elevate you toward your goals.
And it is a MAN's job to quiet the crowd when you have something to say.
Settle into your seat, because with those wrists cocked back like a trigger happy mousetrap and fists bunched together tighter than tulips in winter, you're going to have a hard time receiving what I am trying to say here.
So what am I saying and why am I saying it?
I was partially raised by a single mom who worked two day jobs, went to night school and never once missed her 4am yoga practice, all whilst raising 4 unruly (that's an understatement) kids. One of which was my little sister. So for me to say "I get you" ladies, would be absolutely ludicrous. As a matter of fact, if I tried to walk even a day in your shoes, I would have blisters fatter than a hot air balloon on it's maiden voyage. But what I CAN do and say, is that I SEE you. Since my photography journey began, I have spent far more time looking on and listening to women than ever before. Far too often what I HEAR is that you are undervalued and what I SEE is that you are underestimated. (Now don't get me wrong, this is obviously a generalization, but all I have is what I have experienced).
Let me start by sincerely apologizing to you on behalf of the men who have wronged you in this way. I am sorry they called that spark in your eye "crazy". I am sorry for the DM's (you know the kind) they slid your way. I am sorry for every time one them told you to "let a man handle this". I am sorry for every time you were treated like a piece of meat, for they know not the sharpness of your mind that makes the butcher's knife look dull.
They say that strength is in numbers. Over the last little while, I have had the pleasure of shooting and getting to know a number of women who are strong as heck. Everything from single moms, solo-preneurs, students, and those finding their way, here is what spending time with you taught me;
1.) Resilience with Grace:
How you get knocked down and get right back up time and time again without a wrinkle in your shirt, is beyond me. You have mastered the art of perseverance with prowess. Something we can all learn from and try to emulate. (At least this kid is trying).
2.) Saying no doesn't require careful justification:
No means no. Countless times I have been told how you were put in a horribly uncomfortable position and in order to not hurt someone's feelings, your "no" had to carry timid B.S. justification. It's refreshing to use the word "no" these days, simply because I do not want to do something. Thank you for teaching me that. And ladies if you are yet to try it, I hope that next time, you leave the justification baggage in the trunk where it belongs.
3.) You hold more beauty than you think:
Nothing is funnier to me than showing someone an image of themselves after the first few warmup snaps of the shutter. Without fail, their smile immediately blows up like a marshmallow in the microwave and they begin to glow as they rave about how beautiful it is.. I have to explain to them that "this is a camera", and it takes still images of exactly what it sees.. aka this is how I, WE, the world sees you. It is so refreshing to see you see yourself from heaven's perspective.
...This may have seemed like a scatter brained off topic ramble and maybe it was. But abruptly just like that, as fast as it began, I have run out of things to say.. I felt the urge to write these thoughts out as I was editing moments of a friend who screams beauty and resilience, so I scratched the itch and here we are. I hope that what I poured out over the last few minutes fills whoever's glass needed it.
Until next time...
Below is a series from an orchid who made it through the winter.