The blogs about women were long. Real long.

For the sake of none of these women’s honest, heartfelt words and loving messages from their friends and family going unseen, I’m going to be posting each in a single blog every couple of days or so until I am able to finally get the teen session executed and up to share. So that you can take just five minutes and read one woman’s “story” and maybe find comfort in the way you can relate/understand/empathize/etc.

They will be in no particular order…drawing numbers 1-18.
Tonight’s number: #4.

I give you cheryl.
(cheryl’s story can also be found in Part 1 of the women’s blog posts:


cheryl’s words ~

I have just started to finally be able to tell myself that I am not ugly… that I can get by to some degree regarding the physicality part…still have a hard time when people look at me or a photo is taken. 
I still feel unlovable, mostly for the reasons stated below.

I was made to feel boring and unintelligent if I spoke for very long. I was never going to be bright enough, pretty enough, or talented enough to follow the dreams that I had. 
Any feeling of self-worth as a kid was squashed. 

So, here I am, a 50 year old woman who still feels like an ugly, stupid, and boring kid unless I give myself a good talking-to, which I do quite often. 
I started my own mantra when I was seven to get me through the day and I still use it over and over. 
I feel bad for that kid and for my four of the six brothers that lived with us while I was growing up. 
There you have it – the raw and the short of it.”

cheryl’s friends and family:

“Cheryl is my constant friend from high school! She is usually the one that inspires the girls get-togethers. She enjoys friendships from so many different walks of life, the young and old alike. She is a nonjudgmental person. She is a woman of confidence. She enjoys life and seeks adventures. She loves to travel the world. Her heart is in Europe. She enjoys the finer things in life or just reading a book at home. I am proud to call her my friend.” – patrice

“She is bold, passionate, caring, kind, beautiful, hilarious, intuitive, creative, fun, almost psychic, loving, smart as a whip and so much more.” – amanda

“She is intelligent, unique, supportive, a good listener, inspiring.” – aarde

“Cheryl is: 1. Loyal 2. Fun 3. Vibrant 4. Eccentric 5. Generous. These are five traits that come to mind…” – annette

“Cheryl is a dear and trusted friend. * Cheryl was an avid social networker before Facebook existed. She has a great way of making a connection with people. * Cheryl is someone who knows her friends very well.” – deette

“Cheryl has the ability to liven up a room wherever she goes – people are drawn to her self-assurance. She puts people at ease and can get them talking, making them comfy in any situation. She is strong-willed (which is not a bad thing). She would do whatever it took to protect someone.” – vicki

“My ten words about Cheryl: the glue that keeps friends in touch. Worldly, knowledgeable, opinionated, worthy, adventurous, passionate, outgoing, fierce, independent, loyal.” – kim

“Cheryl is a very kind person. She is the most generous person I know. One of my very favorite traits about Cheryl is she is trustworthy. If you tell her something in confidence it will go no further. When we get together, we are silly and laugh. I am so relaxed with her. She does not judge anyone. Gossip, NO WAY. In fact when a conversation starts to go in that direction she is the first to say, “lets change the subject.” She really values friendships and over the years has been the one who has kept our friendships going. We all get busy in life but Cheryl is NEVER too busy to get together with her old friends. She makes me feel safe and cared for. Cheryl is one of the best women I have known in my life. I really look forward to all the fun years to come.” – deena

the original blogs (with backstory) can be found here:


  1. fairykisses3 · March 24, 2013

    Wow, these posts are amazing, what a great idea. Shows u that no matter what people think of themselves, there is someone out there who thinks more of you than u might ever know.
    Problem is, some of this amazing, beautiful and thoughtful things never get said to the person, who probably needs to hear it. it’s like that movie….and I forget which one exactly..but the one where it says that people never say good things about u til your funeral and then u don’t get to hear it anyway.
    This is beautiful. I hope u are getting as much out of it as others are 🙂

    • alanatphotography · March 24, 2013

      usually quite a few someones who think so much more of you, even! 🙂
      and you’re totally right…that is exactly what we talked about…why is it that people only seem to say what they love about others during their eulogies??? it’s a sad, sad thing. we need to fix that.
      i am definitely getting very much out of it. beside the fact that i actually took part in the same way in this group as well, it also is the most rewarding photo project i’ve ever had, for sure.
      thank you so much for taking time to read about it and comment!

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