Grandmother Raven, Photo by BradensEye

What we own to and expose is our authenticity. The things we know about ourselves play into who we’re being. Then there are the pieces we may learn rather relating our ‘why’s’ to our bloodline. Even if you only know what you can see in the mirror, you recognize a look, the color of eyes and skin. Our modern era gives us the opportunity for DNA testing to share further components of whatever bits of biography are granted to each of us individually. That which was before us is part of the influence moving us onward. The more we ‘mind the gap’ (as so many international metro stops remind aloud due to physical spacing, but I fondly take to heart as entirely historically leaning) within our heritage, ancestry, and aging the greater our maneuvering achievements. How strongly you show your roots might be the truest embodiment of acceptance. Believe in the totality of what your self is to blossom communally.

If you cannot get rid of the family skeleton, you may as well make it dance. ~George Bernard Shaw, Immaturity

One of the finest features in traveling abroad is witnessing cultural pride. A lot of my favorite photos from around the world are the colorful displays of tradition from art to architecture or apparel ensembles to gear gathered for keeping the trash at bay, the house afloat, the kids occupied, the animals corralled, or one’s own up-do aligned with the sun instead of sagging! There’s no end to the enormity of lineage idiosyncrasies. No matter a back alley street urchin or a regal habit, an annual festive celebration or the daily siesta devouring indulgences, I’m delighted by the dissimilarities from one human to the next. Most especially, I’m enamored with the global peoples who’ve allowed me to embrace their ways for the spell of a day or additionally. It’s uncanny excellence whether I’m pretzeled into a Thai massage fold to work out my kinks, baring my Brazilian bottom for some sun rays, or asking a third round of directions from the friendliest lot Aussies, while melting with that accent.

Living with connectivity to our ancestry ought to be regaled dignity. In the factual simplicity, without all of those existences coming on our tails we wouldn’t be here exactly as we’re happening. This memoir of painting our narrative past as elementally part of our present is at least a cause for ceremonial observation. An eventful example approached me surprisingly during an unplanned Brisbane City Botanic Gardens stroll when I trusted my instincts to guide me a few hours to stretch my legs after two days of flying. I landed a date with my beloved Grandmother Gertrude. Whom, by the way, is deceased. I swear she keeps visiting me as a crow or a raven in varied planetary places. Filling my water bottle at a public fountain, she plopped atop the spout staring at me intently with her replicatively remarkable pale sky-blue eyes until I shared plenty of water as she curiously drank while I spoke to her about my dad’s coinciding anniversary. Genealogy speaking is akin to the source of a warm blanket after birthing.

A few of us are on fire to get out
And some just want to stay home
But it don’t matter
Cause our roots run deep ~
Caylee Hammack, Family Tree

As vast as pedigrees run, as many races, breeds, derivations abound intertwining all of us below the lines of paper and nationality. The oils of our origin are the inception that we’re all created; not so much individually (although, yes, of course), but more so referring to that we are all created here on earth together. Herein, we transition through the decorations plus pardons of growing in size, shape, and aging. With this, another realm of root reasoning alights: our bodies and hair changing. I’ve been quizzically pondering my own hair root-shaming. Why am I (the rarely-makeup-wearing, dressed comfortably more than up) not ready to wholly hug my maturity? I write this with as many grains of salt capable for processing. As in the salt-colored hair follicles bristling their tentacles during any reflection of me when I’ve delayed a frosting of my frocks. Recently, I made a new Dutch friend blazing her grey. Tilted in my tumultuous thinking, I bowed to her grace.

Naturally, a majority of us want to run from championing anything that singles us out. Barring any location you think to get away, remain, hide in, or seek to credit as a sanctuary, the truth has a method and manner of tracking you down. Welcoming conversations over where our relatives pioneered or what ailments baffled or lost them to land or sea is key. As with legions of my learning, I appreciate the gestures in nature herself leading with ever-revealing study. Ruminating on the species of trees, I notice the ones who gallantly boast their roots for all to see versus those who tuck theirs tightly close to home or sprawl them beneath a sea of soil. Exhibiting restraint works healthily for scenes of outrage. On the other side would be the experience of abandon. I devotedly procure a position for all facets of my roots as I continue to unwind their meanings. Like a tangle of wood splayed as scripture at my feet, I’ve come to allow its messages to infiltrate me.

Let It All Hang Out, Photo by BradensEye

May your dance of life be a presentation of tremendous acclaim.

LOVER of life. Especially people, places, philanthropy and photography.

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