Sign me up! Please send periodic email updates to feed my creative urge.
This is me, Kelly Hevel
Tag Archives: self-portraits
People often tell me that I’m brave because I moved to Istanbul. Last time I was on vacation I had another of those conversations but this time, surprisingly, the person telling me I was brave was someone who had done the same thing: moved her life from America to Turkey.
I am always a little mystified by these conversations because I honestly don’t feel brave. Am I brave? Really? Why does everyone think that except me?
Granted, part of the answer lies in the fact that I’ve been here for almost five years; I know how this expat thing works.
But did I ever feel brave?
The real question is, did I ever feel at risk? Well, honestly, no. The reason I didn’t is partly due to my perception of risk. To me what is risky is not living your life, not doing what you are meant to do, not using the gifts that were given to you. In short, wasting your abilities, your time, your life.
So when I came to Istanbul and felt that it was the place for me, any more time spent in the “wrong” place felt like the risk. It was time to get busy and start doing what I was supposed to do: build my life in Turkey.
So it’s a trick question: to appear brave, you just have to know so strongly what you want that doing anything else becomes impossible. You may not have all the answers. Your precise destination may be unclear. But you know your purpose.
“Be bold and mighty forces will come to your aid” (Basil King) is one of my favorites quotes. I love the idea that by stepping out an army will rise up behind you. I always get such a strong visual image of someone striding purposely forward and an army cresting the hilltop behind them. But know this: when you are sure in your heart, you don’t need an army. You are enough.
Introducing myself and my blog with a couple of self-portraits seems appropriate, so… here they are!
As you can see, they are very different from each other which made me think about how we see ourselves and how we present ourselves. Like many people starting a new blog and online identity I have struggled with how to present myself here, how much to include, what to leave out, and how much I am willing to risk and expose. I have been and done many things: which of them is really me?
Do we ever really leave our old identities behind?
For myself, I know that I never really integrated some of those identities, I just played dress up in them. Others were a good fit and became part of who I am. What about you? Do you know who you are? In what parts of your life do you truly express that: with your family, at work, online? When do you feel you are truly you?
Check out these online self-portraits to see how others have answered the question of online identity:See hybrid monsters and contribute your own: hybridmonster.org A look in the clear light of day: shiftinglight.com Anonymous honesty: postsecret.com