How My 8-year-old Taught Me to Be Myself

A few weeks ago I was having my photo taken by Shattered magazine to run as mug shot with an article I wrote for them. For more than a week leading up to the photo shoot I mentally stressed over what to wear and what my “look” would be.

I looked at other mugs in the magazine for inspiration and what kept coming to mind was this mug shot of author Holley Gerth.



I had all the elements to make a photo just like hers.

Denim jacket? Check.

Chevron scarf? Check.

Coffee mug? Check.

But as the day of the photo arrived I felt uneasy about stealing someone else’s “look,” yet I didn’t really feel like I had a look of my own to use.

In steps the 8-year-old, who likes to help me choose my accessories (and he’s pretty good at it too). He takes an owl necklace and a pair of owl earrings and says, “Wear these. You like owls. Just wear what you like.”

So instead of chevron scarf I’m wearing a owl necklace, and you probably won’t be able to see the owl earrings hidden behind my hair but I know that they’re there.

In that moment he showed me something about myself, that I do have things that are “me” and they are not the same things that are everyone else.



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