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Candace, on Voice. Sling Diaries Vol VII.

The Sling Diaries, Volume VII. A photo-documentary chronicling the art of baby wearing in the lives of families around the world. Over the course of six months, Sling Diarists will create their own Sling Diary though a series of diary entries interpreting a unique theme given to them each month.

Meet all of our Sling Diarists here.

ON VOICE

Don't let anyone rob you of your imagination, your creativity, or your curiosity. It's your place in the world; it's your life. Go on and do all you can with it, and make it the life you want to live. -Mae Jemison, the first African-American woman in space

I want you to know you are it…. 

You are everything. 

You are smart. 

You are independent. 

You are strong. 

You are beautiful.

You are a dreamer. 

You are worth it.

You are loved.

You are all these things and more. 

Don’t let anyone take that from you. 

As you move through life, you’ll question many of these qualities. Those voices from the outside - family, friends, teachers, foes - will all make you doubt who you are. Some may even lead you towards a path you would not have chosen for yourself. It is important to weigh what you want in life against what others want for you. Those new paths can open an entire world full of discovery, hope, and self improvement. Others can leave you wondering how to get out of the situation you’ve fallen into. 

But you, your voice. Be confident in yourself and the rest will come. You’ll have your own doubts and it’s okay to be wrong too. Speak up for what you want in life. Speak up for the injustices you see. Just speak up.  

My dad would always say these same words to me. Perhaps a little differently, perhaps at times I failed to choose what I knew was right. He was and is always the voice of reason. Countless times and still, I receive advice from him. He’s a man of silent action. A man who has led his life leading with his quiet actions rather than spoken words. He’s kind, he’s gentle, and always takes the higher, more gracious, road. 

 

So, I want you to find a balance, a harmony with your voice, the outside voices, and the special skill it is to reign in what you really want to say. 

 

As I write these words, I think on how you’ve learned to roar like a lion. Such fierceness. Never lose that. 

I promise that my own inner voice, filled with self doubts, will not encroach on your inner voice. 

I promise to lift you up.

I promise to let you roar and roar right with you.

I promise to lead by example, knowing that my words and actions have a straight line to you. 

 

Please know that I am here to guide you and that is all I’ll ever do. Hold your hand and trust you to come into your own.

 

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Follow along with Candace over on Instagram, @candygreene, and The Sling Diaries on Pinterest