Keep Your Soul Light

Miss Darcy Seasons of Beauty

Second Life most often holds a mirror up to any “life”.  This time it held up a mirror toward the need to be gracious, pleased for others’ good fortune, and free of selfishness.  I found that in SL it is more obvious when people are unhappy at others’ fortunes.  In RL this type of jealousy is less overt (probably due to proper embarrassment of it).

A couple of years ago I was thrust into the modeling world through my photography.  My intention was only for my photos to be chosen, not me.  When to my surprise I had to walk a runway, I knew I was lacking in skills, but I persevered and kept trying to improve and asked many questions of gentle and helpful friends.

In general, I didn’t do either well or badly.  Most of the time (not all the time) I placed in the top 3 or moved on to the next level.  What more can someone ask for?  Still, does anyone escape the thought:  “Oh, wouldn’t it be nice to win just once!”?  So in my heart was lodged this previously foreign thought.

I entered Vero Modero’s Miss Mutya contest.  Amongst amazing people, I managed to find myself in the finals.  The lovely Bouquet Babii provided the clothing we were to wear every step of the way which made things so much easier.   I can’t imagine the anxiety in having to choose outfits from all the available clothiers out there and how invested one becomes!  The gorgeous Lua Vendetta took away the Miss Mutya title … and something horrible happened to me which today fills me with shame.  I was jealous.  I was jealous of someone who had done her best and it showed.  I asked friends what I did wrong and to give me advice on how I could win next time.  “Was it possible the contest was rigged?” I asked (we’ve heard those words go around at nearly every contest).  Who did I become?  It’s painful to write it still, and I feel shame for it.

In the midst of the Miss Mutya contest, I had also entered Vivienne Darcy’s Seasons of Beauty contest.  There were four contests, one for each season, and two winners from those went on to compete for the 2013 Miss Seasons of Beauty title.  The judges thought I made a good runner-up at the Miss Autumn competition and moved me to the finals.  Enough time had passed from my earlier (shameful) thoughts about the Miss Mutya contest that I participated in the final Miss Seasons of Beauty thinking it would be fine if I did not win and was happy to have gotten this far, but would certainly be happier if for once in my life I would win the title too.  Vivi provided the lovely clothes throughout also.  I planned to be very happy for the winner.

In the end, amongst all the beautiful contestants, I managed to win the final title.  It was a surprise, but I really had tried to do my very best.  (It must be said here that I was not and still am not friends with any of the judges).  Oh, I was so thrilled!  And my Nev was there to see it (he is hardly on SL and this was his first time seeing a contest).  I was floating on air and probably twirled around joyfully in RL (or maybe I imagined doing so).

And here is the mirror that was held up.  Not but a few days later the kind Vivienne Darcy announced that she would no longer hold contests as the feelings of some contestants had gotten too hurt.  Not winning contests does hurt.  It really does.  No matter what we say to ourselves, it does.  I remembered my own feelings at not winning and I could not fault the other ladies for their own feelings.  But I felt something else too this time.  The joy and lightness suddenly became heavy, tainted, and stolen away.

I will probably land myself in contests again through submitting photographs (at least, I hope I can remain sharp in that area of my SL life).  These promises I make:  I will be truly happy for the winner.  I will share in his or her joy because someone saw something in them and they worked hard to be there.  I will not allow negative feelings to interfere with their celebration.  I will be respectful of the decisions made by judges who also donated time and effort.

To this day, I do not know who made Vivienne so concerned that she chose to no longer hold the contest.  Something was taken from Vivi as well.  She had had joy in putting it all together.  I  wouldn’t dare judge someone else for having those dark and hurt feelings.  I truly deeply don’t.  This post is to encourage each us to be joyful for one another when someone finds success.  To use a ‘loss’ as a reason to improve.  In retrospect, I should have never won the Miss Mutya contest (my styling was not as good as I thought).  We cannot win every single contest, but we can be happy for one another every single time.  When it is our turn to win, maybe those others we cheered on won’t feel obliged to steal our joy away from us, but happily cheer for us until it is their turn to be cheered for once again.

I want to live all my lives this way.  It is simpler, easier, lighter on the soul.

The provided outfit with my styling in one of the poses I used.
The provided outfit with my styling in one of the poses.
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The Voyage

The Voyage


(well worth a good listen)

Nev and I met in SL 4 years and 4 days ago. It was the strangest thing, really. A friend brought me to Nev’s home and I stood there speechless. For real, I said nary a peep. He himself said but a few words and no less than 10 minutes later the friend that brought me to Nev’s house took us both somewhere else again. But for Nev and I a deep and strong feeling insisted on its proper due. It took a while before we saw each other again, and we never parted thereafter. Our RL has entwined in a beautiful Celtic knot, and we plan to take this journey together all the way to the end.

Trust your feelings, dear reader. Don’t squelch them. Whether good or bad, trust them. Take leaps and then leap again for joy because the world is a wonder and the Universe provides in ways we do not expect!

Happy Accidents!

Happy Accidents!

Sometimes we can make the best plans ever devised. Generally, I over-prepare for nearly anything, particularly in RL. And this is all well and good, except that things rarely turn out the way I anticipate they will. Not because I’m bad at understanding the world, but because the world is truly so big in scope that one little human cannot account for all possibilities. And so with this little photo you see. I was taking pictures for a friend who has just started selling clothing (Immerse) when I clicked on my avatar in error. To my chagrin, she immediately turned her back to me, dropped the umbrella and the AO that went with it, and totally messed up the photo I was aiming for. Well, you can see how this minor annoyance turned out. So, with open arms I welcome all the glitches and sons of glitches that the Universe wants to throw at me. I am ready for happy accidents!

Fallen Angel on the Run

Fallen Angel on the Run

I joined SL for the visual beauty it promised. What I found is the beauty in humanity and in our collective spirits. Fashion for Life has brought together designers who have donated their creations and customers who are happy to give AND receive too! The proceeds of selected items will go to the American Cancer Society. According to the beautiful Caoimhe Lionheart ( from her blog: http://anchailinalainn.com/2013/03/15/dha-giorraionn-an-mbothar/ ), already over 4 million has been raised! So run and join in! Fashion for Life is over this weekend but the fight against cancer never stops.

Three Amigas

When strong, intelligent, caring women get together there is no stopping them from turning things into spun gold.  Such is the case with Aisha and XiuLan … and little me is just tagging along in the back.  See me trying to hold them back?  It’s just not possible.  They keep walking!  Best thing to do is run along beside them and hope to lithely jump on the train with them.   But they are not just movers and shakers.  Nearly anyone can do that with enough determination and doggedness — move and shake.  These ladies care.  They are drama-free.  They see everyone in a positive light.  May we all be blessed with connections to people who want to make a positive difference without hurting others along the way.    And let’s none of us try to hold them back!

Caledon Library — READS!

Oh I am just so happy with this poster series!  The subjects are as professional as the best SL models out there and, perhaps due to their role playing experience or brilliant minds, are charming, witty, and brainy on top of it all.  There are four more gentlefolk waiting for their pictures to be taken and I just can’t wait to meet them. 🙂

Desmond Shang

Caledon LIbrary Poster

Kamilah

Dimmie & Solace

On a Giving Roll

The Universe is setting me on this path and I can only oblige.  Each time I give, I am rewarded.  Not just monetarily, but with friendships and random tidbits that make me smile.  And sometimes more business.  All of which is nice.  I won’t deny the Universe spreading the Love as it wishes fit.  So today a friend was generous with me and I was generous in turn.  Together in our generosity we ended up donating and Wren Noir Photo Studio became a sponsor to Metaverse Pageantry.  And what a great joy that has already brought.  I spoke with the wonderful Heth Vertaus (hethwen) and couldn’t be more pleased to support his efforts.  Please look here for more information and then support, support, support:  http://metaversepageantry.wordpress.com/ .  The Universe will reward you, I promise!

WrenNoir Logo Left Side copy

Giving to the SL community

I want to start things off right on this very first post of my very first blog.  At least that’s my intention.  It’s quite possible things will not go ‘right’ rather quickly, but until then I will make the attempt and hope for the best.

So to do this the right way, it seems proper to post about things and events that contribute positively to the SL community.  Luckily, this is very easily handled by the Caledon Library which has been improving everyone’s SL and — dare I say —  RL experience by promoting reading, book discussions, and a general love of literature for years.  I was approached by the remarkable JJ Drinkwater to take photos of prominent Caledon residents posing with their favorite reading material and create a campaign akin to that of the American Library Association.  You might remember that as the poster series of well-known RL people posing with books and a big “READ” splashed all over the poster.  My first Caledon victim model was Alastair Whybrow posing with a book he created together with a friend.  How fun is that?  The Governor of Caledon will be next.

Alastair Whybrow for the Caledon Library
Alastair Whybrow for the Caledon Library