Regann- Class of 2021
When creating custom dream sessions for my seniors, I work closely with them and their parents to find out what they want, what makes them unique and how far they are willing to push the boundaries of "normal." When working with Regann, the answer to that last question was "further than you've ever been pushed for a session!" Her mom mentioned that she had a scar from an open heart surgery when she was born and they wanted it to be not only shown, but celebrate the fact that Regann is a survivor. Challenge accepted! We dreamt up this session, added more fire than I've ever added and then tossed some more fire on a stick to twirl in the rain in the middle of a creek. No big deal, right?! Here is Regann's story in her mom's words and then my thought process about the first part of her session. "Regann was born with Transposition of the Great Arteries or TGA. She was rushed to Riley and hung out in NICU to be stabilized for 7 days. She underwent an Open Heart Surgery-Arterial Switch - at 8 days old. She recovered with flying colors... at that time she was the second quickest kid to come home from Riley with her diagnosis to 3 weeks after birth. She is followed by cardio and has had very few complications, which has allowed her to be a competitive athlete. She was born with a heart of a warrior and has the scar to prove it. Her heart was not perfectly made, but it was perfectly repaired. I promised myself while she was at Riley that she would never know the depth of my fears and uncertainties, that I would remember everything so she could forget. She learned to be fearless all on her own, I refuse to hold her back on any physical things, and now it shows. As her soul continues to grow into the confident and graceful woman I see emerging, I can clearly see her heart has never forgotten how to be my wild warrior. My motto for her is May You Always Be Wild at Heart." So we took that, and then I added my spin. In ancient Japanese culture is a practice called "Kintsukuroi." This is where, when things are broken they are repaired with liquid gold thus adding value to the broken object. This traditional Japanese art uses a precious metal to bring together pieces of the once useless broken item and make them into something that is ultimately better than before the break. Every repaired piece is unique and stronger than it was when it was considered "normal." I took this and spun the idea to Regann and her mom of painting the scar with gold paint to show that that she is unique and better than she was before the scar. The scar makes her a warrior. It should be celebrated not hidden. So here you go, the session of a true warrior.