Monday, March 27, 2006

The past few days have been full with so many things that I am a bit dazed. I had the honor of meeting two new Soul families this week. Both families have daughters that are so beautiful they take your breath away. One of the girls has cystic fibrosis and the other has damage from oxygen deprivation. I salute wholeheartedly the love and care and absolute devotion shown in these families. I marvel that time after time I arrive to see something that is so very exemplary in parenting. The ways in which each family rises to the occasion and takes the time to learn about caring for each child is a joy to witness. To be able to celebrate the beauty and grace in each child is something that fills me with a humility for how little effort it takes to do this small kindness while the families rise to great challenges with such powerful intentions and abiding love.

The loss of life in our old neighborhood this week sends chills through me. My heart and care is with the families that are forced to come to terms with the loss of their children at the Rave party slayings on Saturday. We all should remember how small our community is and realize that we are touched by this senselessness in sometimes subtle and sometimes close ways. In this senseless killing, one of our wonderful volunteers for Soulumination lost a young sister. My heart and love is with this young woman as she struggles to help her family through the torrent of press and publicity. About a week ago, I read that old friends of ours lost their lovely daughter, we have not seen this family in years but the loss is so harsh when I realize that this beautiful young woman was the same age as our own Llewelyn.

I wrote about the fact that more and more photographers across the country have taken up projects similar to Soulumination, however my heart aches when I hear that some folks are not being supportive and welcoming to new talent. After over 5 years of working with families I know that we must be kind and supportive to all who come with the heart and talent to do this work. Granted, we all must use the ultimate care to be discreet and not take our own issues into the shoots, but there are so many deserving families who would love photos that capture their children's spirits that there is room enough for everyone to reach out in this loving manner.

I am excited to share Barry's new address so that we can keep mail coming to that charming young man. His birthday is coming up soon so maybe some of you would like to send him birthday wishes. You can mail him, at Barry Simon c/o Ronald McDonald house, 5110 40th Ave NE Seattle 98105 Room #B-11.

Doug and I had a lovely time on Friday with a couple that I met 17 years ago, they were one of the first couples to use me to record their wedding. We have renewed our acquaintance through Soulumination and they have been so incredibly supportive, including asking for donations to Soulumination instead of gifts for their combined birthday celebration recently. She is a teacher in the special education department at a public school and was thoughtful enough to have her students create Valentine's for Barry. The two weddings that I shot this weekend were so full of love and fun that it helps even out some of the emotions. I am so excited that we are coming fully into the wedding season.

My thanks to some special people in my life: Susan for the best hug ever, Lisa for showing me how to accept things with dignity and love, Patty for opening her house to fun art projects time after time, Doug for trying to listen even when its just so overwhelming, Deb for bringing me lunch when she knew I needed a little extra attention, the staff in Palliative care for believing in my abilities, Dick for wanting to detail my automobile even though he knows I am such a mess with my trusty little car and Lori for selflessly creating the start of our first newsletter.

In love and peace, Lynette