Hello! Thank you for checking in on week 34 of the 365 More People Pictures project. I'm sorry I've managed to fall behind in the blog posts. I've still continued to take a picture of a person, every single day. It's been a crazy few weeks and catching up has been a challenge. I'll catch us up soon! In the meantime, if you'd like to follow along daily, my Instagram username is @missellanea.
Day 231 - Estrellalinda
This is Estrellalinda. We met at the park.
"The success of my career," Estrellalinda answered, when I asked the happiest thing happening in her life right now. Estrellalinda is a chef at a local restaurant.
When I asked Estrellalinda if she's recently performed an act of kindness, she answered, "it's something I do on the daily." The most recent act of kindness to come to mind was that she had paid a visit to an elderly friend who resides in the care facility where Estrellalinda once worked. The woman just loved Estreallalinda's cooking, so Estrellalinda brought her some treats, visited, and made plans to come back soon for another visit.
When I asked Estrellalinda if she had a personal mission statement, she answered, "don't fear, just live." Estrellalinda added that we have to take risks to find love and happiness.
"I'm starting to be a successful Mother," Estrellalinda answered, when I asked something about herself which she would consider to be a success. I didn't know when I approached Estrellalinda, but she was keeping a watchful eye on her daughter who was playing on the playground just a little ways from where Estrellalinda was sitting. Estrellalinda's daughter probably felt like she had a little bit of space and freedom to spread her wings, but I could see Estrellalinda watching her baby bird the entire time we were talking.
When we were finished with the picture and the questions, Estrellalinda pointed her daughter out to me and I asked if she was friends with the other little girl she was playing with. "No, they just met," Estrellalinda explained. I then remarked how amazing kids are at meeting new friends and wondered when we, adults, lost our ability to go meet a new friend on the playground. Estrellalinda laughed and pointed out how we had just successfully struck up a conversation, just like the kids on the playground. We laughed and visited more. Estrellalinda confided areas where she felt she wanted to improve on being a mother, and I confided that the thought of being a mother was just too big of a challenge for me, so I don't have kids. I am always truly in awe of parents, and especially mothers.
Estrellalinda said that going to the park was her daughter's idea. In the past, Estrellalinda would have probably passed on the park in favor of just taking care of all of life's other busy-work, but she now stops to take the time to have fun whenever they can. Estrellalinda gave the credit to her daughter, saying, "she's teaching me how to be a good Mom."
Thank you, Estrellalinda! Best wishes of happiness for you and your daughter.
Day 232 - Gabrielle
This is Gabrielle. We met as we were crossing the street together. Can you believe that Gabrielle doesn't actually like having her picture taken and she recently decided to get better about it. I feel so lucky to have bumped into Gabrielle! This is one of my favorite portraits. Gabrielle is a beautiful person, and somehow, we both made a good picture together. It's just so funny that a young woman who doesn't like having her picture taken, and I, someone who can't even call themselves a photographer, managed to create a beautiful image, in spite of ourselves. I love this picture and this fun little moment shared with such a lovely person.
"I'm starting a new chapter here," Gabrielle answered, when I asked the happiest thing happening in her life right now. Gabrielle recently moved to Portland and she's happy to be "digging roots" here. She feels like she's becoming part of the community.
"I feel like every day the universe gives me kindness," Gabrielle answered, when I asked if she's recently performed an act of kindness or if she's been on the receiving end of an act of kindness. Gabrielle added that she had given someone food the day before.
When I asked Gabrielle her life's purpose, she answered, "helping to empower people in the world, especially women." Gabrielle works in alternate healing and she's able to help empower people through body work. When people are well and feel good, they're empowered.
"My ability to fail," Gabrielle answered, when I asked her something about herself which she would consider to be a success. Gabrielle explained that failures have provided her with the opportunity for growth. "I'm learning how to learn," Gabrielle added. If she has a setback or failure, now she just picks herself back up, learns what she can from the failure, and moves on. Such amazing wisdom from a young person. It takes some of us several decades to view our failures as an opportunity for growth.
Very best wishes for you, Gabrielle. I hope we/Portland welcomes you and that you find your home here.
Day 233 - Nemo
This is Nemo. We met walking down the street.
When I asked Nemo if he's recently performed an act of kindness or if he's been on the receiving end of kindness, he explained that he's been on the receiving end of kindness in the compliments he's received.
"Making things," Nemo answered, when I asked his life's purpose.
"Trying to make things," Nemo answered when I asked something about himself which he would consider to be a success.
Thank you, Nemo! Keep making things!
Day 234 - Jonny
This is Jonny. We met at the mall.
The happiest thing happening in his life right now is the birth of his baby sister.
"I try to pay it forward," Jonny answered, when I asked if he's recently performed an act of kindness or if he's been on the receiving end of an act of kindness. Jonny is involved with the group, Tattoos Cure Cancer.
"To make the world a better place than when I came into it," Jonny said, is his life's purpose.
When I asked Jonny something about himself which he would consider to be a success, he answered that it was that he's a friendly person, even though people could look at him covered in tattoos and possibly judge him to be otherwise. "Don't judge a book by its cover," Jonny added.
Jonny was a sweetheart and it's been my experience, at least with my friends and acquaintances, the more ink one has, the bigger their heart. I'm not sure if it's the same feeling everywhere in the country, but at least in Portland, it doesn't feel like there's even much of a stigma attached to being heavily tattooed anymore.
Thank you, Jonny!
Day 235 - James
This is James, a Portland Police Officer. We met when he was on break at Starbucks.
The happiest thing happening in his life right now is that his daughter is getting married in New York. Although he was so happy for his Daughter and her wedding, he was a little nervous about the trip to the big city!
James' most recent act of kindness is that he helped a person change a flat tire on the freeway. This is such a big fear of mine. Whenever I see someone stalled on the side of the highway, I get so nervous for them. Something "minor" like a flat tire, can quickly turn into a tragedy. Not only was James' assistance an act of kindness, but it's pretty brave too.
"Go out and do your job every day, even if you don't feel like you're making a difference," James answered, when I asked if he had a personal mission statement.
When I asked James something he does that helps to spread a little ripple of kindness, James said that lately he's been letting more people go with a warning instead of giving them a ticket! Yay! He added that some people need to get tickets, but when he can, he's just been giving warnings.
"My everyday life is pretty good...good wife, good kids," James said, when I asked something about himself which he would consider to be a success.
Thank you, James!
Day 238 - Meghan
This is Meghan. We met just walking down the street.
The happiest thing happening in her life is that she had friends in town, visiting from Boston.
Meghan was recently on the receiving end of an act of kindness when someone gave up their seat on the bus so that Meghan, who had a lot of bags, could sit down.
"To help people and help them actualize their potential," Meghan answered, when I asked her life's purpose. Meghan does energy work.
When I asked Meghan something about herself which she would consider to be a success, she answered, "having the bravery to move across country." Meghan and her sister moved from Boston, not knowing anyone but each other. I thought it took courage when I moved just 235 miles from home, so I've always admired people who've had the courage to completely uproot themselves and re-plant themselves on the other side of the country.
Thank you, Meghan! Good luck in Portland!
Day 237 - Mike
This is Mike. We met downtown.
"I'm healthy and my wife and I are happy," Mike answered, when I asked the happiest thing happening in his life right now.
Mike's recent act of kindness is that he helped his friends move.
When I asked Mike his life's purpose, he answered on behalf of he and his wife, "our goal is not to do anything bad while we're here on earth, and to travel, learn and explore as much as possible." One thing that I noticed in talking with Mike, even for just a few moments, is that even though he wasn't with his wife at the moment, he answered several questions using "we" and "our." I loved seeing the true partnership he shares with his wife, even when she's not in his presence. They're truly one unit.
"I've managed to make and maintain a lot of great friendships," Mike answered, when I asked something about himself which he considers to be a success. He still has friends from childhood.
Thank you, Mike.
Here's the summary of personal mission statements and life's purpose from this week's subjects:
- Don't fear, just live.
- Helping to empower people in the world, especially women."
- Making things.
- To make the world a better place than when I came into it.
- Go out and do your job every day, even if you don't feel like you're making a difference.
- To help people and help them actualize their potential.
- Our goal is not to do anything bad while we're here on earth, and to travel, learn and explore as much as possible.
Thank you for following along!