A Phoenix Burning

Self

So, I’ve decided that what I need in my life are Goals.

I am forty.

Every single solitary goal I ever made for myself, I accomplished.

Finish high school with honors. Check.

Go to college to get a teaching degree. Check.

Get my Masters and earn three certifications to make myself marketable.  Check.

Teach in my home district.  Check.

Get married young.  Check.

Buy a house. Check.

Have children.  Check, Check, and Check.

Earn enough money as a family to keep me home with the kids.  Check.

Now, although I feel blessed to have been able to accomplish all the long-term goals I set myself in my late teens/early twenties, the fact of the matter is that I don’t know what I want to do next.  Naturally, I want to raise my children and enjoy all that parenting still has to offer…and of course I want to maintain the family life we have built.  But methinks I need some new goals.  I suppose this is the mid-life (I’d like to think of it as EARLY mid-life) reevaluation that I’ve heard so much about.  I refuse to call it a crisis for the word “crisis” conjurs up a vision of panic and danger, unhappiness.  What I feel is more a contemplative moment at a crossroads…an opportunity for a change, a dive into the unknown, excitement, a chance to explore a different side of myself that I never explored because I have been focusing my energy on other pursuits.

I saw this on my friend Jai’s blog the other day…it was perfectly fitting, so I will steal it from him.  😉

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I have no idea what that “something different” will be, or if I will come to the conclusion that what I have been is what I want to go back to, but at least I am ready to bring these ponderings out of the shadows and into the light of existence. Time to set some new long-term goals.

And completely off subject, but fitting under the title of this post…

I was looking through photos recently, attempting to update my photo wall, and putting together an album for my parents.  I was surprised to note that there are so few photos of me.  I guess many of us behind the camera don’t feel very comfortable in front of it.  So, I figured it was about time to attempt a self-portrait.  I decided my husband deserves a photo of me that doesn’t have feathered hair and and a neon green sweater.  And my kids deserve better than the haggard hospital birth photos and harried vacation Mom photos they are stuck with presently.  🙂

Yikes!  This was HAAAAAAAARRRRRRRDDDDDDD!!!!!  But, for better or worse, here it is.

This is Me.

And in black and white…

Will have to remember to hand the camera over now and then, or else I’ll have to paste this one photo of me into every family album I create!  🙂

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12 responses

  1. A very fine post – with a very fine portrait of you! It was beautiful and courageous to do this. It would have been a great contribution to Scott thomas’ last assignment “Portraiture” ( http://stphoto.wordpress.com/2010/09/15/assignment-9-portraiture/ )

    October 28, 2010 at 3:49 pm

  2. Hi you… Good to “meet” you finally… and let me tell you that you sure don’t look forty… Forty two maybe.. lol.. Nah, I’m messin’ wiv ya… It’s a great shot and you look amazing.. You should make your next set of goals fun though mefinks… such as “I must lick a penguin”… or “I must learn to ride a giraffe”… 😉

    October 28, 2010 at 4:27 pm

    • Ha! The camera never lies…or does it?! LOL. Where have I heard that before? 😉 I have looked forty all my life…I’ve just finally caught up with it. And I figured, if magazines need to touch up models’ skin, I should be allowed to do a little “fixing” too, right? I should have said, “this is me, with better skin.”
      But, not a single wrinkle erased, and no colors were manipulated, I promise you…I do all the color manipulation off camera!

      And as for goals, I think you’re onto something!! Maybe I’ll be a rodeo clown?! Or a balloonist!
      An actress…I want to be an actress. Whoomp! There it is! LOL

      October 28, 2010 at 8:20 pm

  3. YOU are beautiful! What lovely eyes and smile! 🙂

    You’ve already accomplished so much in your (young) life. We are about the same age (okay, I’ve got 3 years on you) and I, too, don’t look my age (wish I had better skin, tho).

    You sound alot like my husband. He always says, ‘I wonder what I’ll be when I grow up?’ He thinks he has no goals and yet, he is an amazing man who HAS also accomplished more than most at his age. Why are you guys so hard on yourselves?

    My advice is this…remember when you were a kid and you would try anything?? Why not think that way again? If you see an interesting class (or not, even), sign up for it. If you don’t like it, then well, CHECK! But if you do it just may lead you into a totally new direction. Hugs! 🙂

    October 29, 2010 at 11:17 am

  4. You did a great job with your self-portrait! You look great! I wish I could do as well. This topic (about never being in the pictures ourselves) just came up over at my blog too. I, too, have been in that “reevaluation” mode lately due to a set of circumstances, and probably as you say, that age (41 for me). Unlike you, I have one huge goal that I am yet to accomplish – teaching in my own classroom. Been wondering lately if that will ever happen for me, and if it is still a worthwhile goal. You are in a great place KD; I think your goal should be to enjoy it even more. (Or maybe try some of Brian’s suggestions! 😉 )

    October 30, 2010 at 7:44 am

  5. This is a fine post KD.
    Whether you set yourself new goals, or just float over time. Does it matter as long as you enjoy life as much as possible – or at least as much as you can get to?
    Truels is right, you should have used your beautiful self portrait for Scotts assignment 🙂
    I’m puzzled by your eyes, are they green or grey-blue?

    November 3, 2010 at 5:02 pm

    • Thank you Carsten!

      My eyes are a bit weird. LOL. Sometimes they are gray/blue, and other times they are green. If I wear green, they are VERY green, if I wear blue, they are VERY blue, but otherwise they seem to change by the day for no particular reason. Strange, I know. 🙂

      November 3, 2010 at 8:22 pm

      • As long as they look good! 🙂

        November 4, 2010 at 2:01 am

  6. Hey, wait until you are 50. 🙂

    Goals…I know in the past year you’ve volunteered and have loaned your time to others. You have certainly improved in the realm of photography. I set some goals at the beginning of this year. Some I have accomplished, some I will fall short of and some are still a work in progress.

    Make big goals and little ones but make them. Then, go for it and take us along for the ride.

    November 5, 2010 at 9:40 am

  7. Well, KD, nice photos and I found you by discovering a very old post of yours on my blog! Shows you how much I check it.

    I will have to give that blog more attention and check it more often.

    Anyway, nice photos, nice blog, and I’m signing up for updates. Good luck with your goal setting. I just built a small darkroom, so that will keep me busy for some time to come!

    David

    November 10, 2010 at 10:42 am

  8. That’s a wonderful portrait.

    A crisis is just a time of converging floods. Seems like drowning, but it’s really swimming. OK, extreme swimming. Remember to breathe on the upstroke . . .

    November 10, 2010 at 8:42 pm

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