I love this beautiful woman. She is one of the first women I taught prenatal yoga to in the high school. We did her first photo shoot when she was pregnant with her first and it was such a sweet experience for me. I feel so fortunate that Salma welcomed me into her life, that she shared her family and her story with me, as so many of the teen families did. I do not take their trust in me lightly. I feel and have always felt this great responsibility in holding their openness and their stories. How lucky am I that I got to be with Salma at such an important time in her life, when she was pregnant and then when Zakir was a baby? How wonderful that she invited me in and she shared her family, her experience, her husband and babies with me.
Salma was at the opening of the show, it was so wonderful to see her again. I had not seen her in over a year, Zakir is big now! Walking and talking. And she now has a beautiful baby girl. I want to squeeze all of them, but I don't, I just do it from afar with my heart.
Tomorrow is the Artist Talk and Panel Discussion. I will see you there!
2:00-3:00 PM on Wednesday, May 30th at the Paragon Gallery, 815 N Killingsworth St
About the panelists:
Shanne Sowards became a father at 15. Although he was a young a father, he had a reputation for being present in his child’s life. In his professional career he excels in both manufacturing and sales. He has coached over 15 seasons of youth and adult sports. In 2012, Shanne founded Squires, a nonprofit mentoring program for young fathers in Portland, OR.
Mary Hanel is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker. She works as a teen parent social worker for the Portland Public Schools' Teen Parent Services Program.
Britni Locke is a graduate of the Graduate School of Social Work at Portland State University and is a Licensed School Social Worker. She is currently employed by Portland Public Schools providing outreach to young people who have disengaged from their education. Britni became a mother at the age of 18, is a first generation college graduate and also the first in her family to pursue a masters level education.
Vanessa Salceda is a teen mom to her 3 year old daughter, Melanie.
See you tomorrow! Love, Eden