As I Am

  • ANITA

    Posted: Mar 20 2017

     

    Do you feel like you know who you are?

    I think I have always known who I am.  I remember even as a young person knowing what I was made of and what that meant. 

    What does that feel like?

    It feels solid and strong. It feels sacred. It gives me permission to walk my walk.

    Who are you?

    I am a strong, confident, loving, empathetic, silly mother, daughter, partner and friend. 

    What has the journey been so far to connecting to your true self?

    I think the essence of my true self has always been present in my journey.  The importance I have placed on each of my values has shifted over time as my priorities change.  My journey has included much pain and self-growth.  But I also experience much love and gratitude in my life.  Age definitely is a factor in being content with who I am. 

    What kinds of things knock you out of alignment to your true self?

    Different groups of people, organizations and relationships have their own culture.  There are times when I am part of a culture that can ‘knock me out of alignment to my true self’.

    What kinds of things help you feel more your true self?

    Quiet time for reflection helps keep me grounded; my relationship with my husband and my children. 

    Does your clothing affect how you connect?

    Sure.  I like the way my clothes look on me.  I feel good with what I wear.  So when I connect with others I can concentrate on being my true self as I am happy with the image I am presenting.

    Why you chose this location.

    My home is my sanctuary.  I have created this space with my family and it reflects who we are.  It is a warm, comfortable and hopefully inviting place.

    About any special items with you in the photo.

    For the photo shoot I wore my wedding jewellery.  The jewellery represents the Pakistani side of my family.

     

     

     

  • SKYE

    Posted: Mar 12 2017

    Do you feel like you know who you are?

    I feel like I have always known deep down who I am, but it's easy to get distracted by the white noise all around us. The ideas placed on us to be quieter, smaller, more tailored. It's taken me some time to be able to tune out the outside influences, and really tap into myself more and allow that to be the me I present to the world. 


     

    What does that feel like?

    For me, felling myself is like putting on my favourite, most comfortable outfit, and walking outside, and the warm sun is shining down on my shoulders. Everything feels right, and warm, and comfortable. And while it was something much more internal, deeper, describing it like that … yeah, that is how I would best describe it. Comfortable. 

     

     Who are you?

    An ever evolving version of myself. I like the idea that I get to continually meet who I am as life goes on. The more we grow, the more chances we have to learn who we are. The second I think I understand myself, or how life is unfolding, I get a good shake by life, and am brought back down to that state of be open to learning more about who I am. And yet despite life changing us, at the core I know that I am a lover of nature and animals, a good friend, and an incredibly sensitive soul trying to navigate living in this world. 


     

    What has the journey been so far to connecting to your true self?

    It's been joyous, and challenging! It took some courage to come out as non-binary (not feeling 100% male or female), and I watched relationships around me change in doing so, which ended up to be the most rewarding thing. People faded away, a new people grew closer to me. But ultimately, being able to finally be the most authentic version of myself on the outside that I had been feeling on the inside since I was old enough to remember was liberating (and a bit terrifying). 

     

    What kinds of things knock you out of alignment to your true self?

    I find that I struggle the most when I'm mis-gendered, because it's a reminder that other people perhaps see me in a way that I don't see myself. It takes a good bike ride, or some time with some good music, to bring me back into centre. It's becoming less challenging to get back to that place of being centred, but it does happen. 

      

    What kinds of things help you feel more your true self?

    Riding my bike, swims in the ocean, wandering walks looking at nature. I often don't realise that I'm feeling "off" and then I'll go for a ride to the sea, and it hits me, I relax and feel like I'm moved back into myself. The last year I've really tried to be more selfish, and focus on allowing myself to enjoy these things that make me happiest, without guilt. 

     

     Does your clothing affect how you connect?

    Absolutely! When I feel confident in myself, I dress better, and thus present myself better. The way I dress is a reflection of how I'm feeling inside. When I'm wearing clothing that is comfortable and makes me feel good (and hopefully looks good too!), I'm a more outgoing and social person - which opens me up for more interactions with people around me, which can and does shape who I am as a person. Clothing is so much more than just something that keeps you warm, and dry!  

     

    About any special items with you in the photo.

    I was really excited about this campaign for many reasons, but one of the biggest ones for me was having the ability to choose a location that felt most comfortable for me, which was outside. I picked one of my favourite neighbourhoods (Strathcona) with a few different places in mind. I've always loved the train tracks, and the quaintness of the old homes contrasting with the industrial feel of the area. I've spent many hours riding and walking around the area, and it's a place I feel comfortable and inspired. 

     

  • MARCY

    Posted: Mar 06 2017

    Do you feel like you know who you are?

    I am always learning more. Transition into the new role of parenthood will be a time of self-discovery. This role will both challenge what I ‘know’ about my current self, and solidify what I have always felt.

    What does that feel like?

    I’m ready for challenge, transformation and adding new identity!

    Who are you?

    Steady, reasonable, creative, stubborn, driven, problem solver, builder, happy, joyous, anxious at times, forgiving, confident, explorer. 

    What has the journey been so far to connecting to your true self?

    Smooth, no one has told me who I am in life. I was lucky to grow up in a home that supported self-discovery and did not direct action or decision-making. Adjectives that you learn about yourself early in life seem to stick and are challenging to escape. People hold you to how they remember you.  New traits to add in the journey of motherhood: generosity, acceptance, patience, and unconditional love.  These are all reflections of the gifts of my childhood. 

    What kinds of things help you feel more your true self?

    Being with people who embrace who I am, feeling calm and settled. My partner Joseph! Walks in the woods, paddling a kayak on a calm ocean, watching nature, slow days and good books, singing with friends, and eating macaroni and cheese with bread crumbs on top.

    Does your clothing affect how you connect?

    Feeling warm and comfortable definitely affect how I feel and interact with the world.  Sensations of tightness or pinching distract me from the precious moments.  My outward physical presentation has been fun; I am confident in what I choose to wear. My favourite pants in grade five were green and white gingham golf type pants that I recall being teased about but continued to wear with love. I always enjoy adding something quirky and conversational in presentation.

    Why you chose this location?

    It’s our home, our special place, cozy and safe. 

    Any special items with you in the photo?

    There are many special items in our home! I value objects that have been crafted by family members and hold history. There is a special vase in the window that my Nana made with her strong hands. She was a potter. There is a cherry slab coffee table that my best friend’s dad just made us out of a tree that was planted in our neighborhood close to the time when my friend Ali and I were born. There is a chair and credenza that my grandparents bought in the 60s or 70s. My Grandpa was a blacksmith and a hobbyist woodworker; he built many loved items around our home.  I’ve built a bench as my home contribution, and I would love to create more!

    In the photo I am wearing my Nicole Bridger silk dress…. (is there a better way to describe this dress?). I wore this special dress to Ali’s wedding this summer.  In life and in pregnancy I have depended on comfortable, generous lines and materials, continuing to wear many of the clothing items that I loved pre-pregnancy.  Nicole’s designs fit with my clothing ideals of comfortable, quality, vibrant pieces that stand out, and are easy to combine.

     Photography by Angela Fama.