I Am Not Your Expectation…

I am not my hair
I am not this skin
I am not your expectation

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At this point, I would just like to point out… that I put on hair for my Update Check with Opium… but other than that, I haven’t worn hair for, like, 5 days.  LOL.  I love this headpiece that Dainie made special for me for this challenge from Artizana.  (Thank youuuu Dainie!)

This is the first time I’ve actually been inspired to/had the time to blog a Colour of Couture Challenge.  My past outfits are saved, and so I will try to backtrack my journey and show you all of my stylings from past challenges up to this point, but today, I needed to show you my Charity Challenge Styling.

This styling may look incredibly random and not cohesive, however, it was more symbolic.  I couldn’t figure out what to style that would appropriately represent my charity (Relay for Life… come on, who’s really surprised that I picked Relay?  Anyone?) while still being true to myself.  And then a song came into my head (not the tune I’m blogging to today).  The song my styling is based from is “Skin” by Rascal Flatts.  Yes, I wore a green dress to my prom.  Lol.  My goal with this style was to just be me… regular old Tivi-behind-the-keyboard… because cancer (or other diseases that fall under ACS’s research) affects us all in some way, shape, or form.

Now you see where my challenge was.  I mean, seriously… up until finding that song, I was thoroughly convinced that I was going to be doing my presentation in a pair of purple lounge pants and my committee t-shirt (and my headpiece).  I had NO idea until that song came in my head.  So, I am reminded once more, and extremely grateful, of my deep connection to music.

Anyway, the song I’m actually blogging to today is a song that my RFL Team Captain, Chevelley Silentghost played yesterday while she was competing in the Preliminary of the Celebrate Remember Fight Back Top DJ Competition.  (She raised enough to be in 2nd place currently, which moves her into Quarter Finals.  Final total was L$160,519… of which, the last L$64,000 was raised in the last 5 minutes.  It was a WONDERFUL thing to see.  Just in case anyone’s curious.)  I had completely forgotten that this song exists before that… and now I’ve been listening to it on repeat ever since.  And yes, Tivi’s crying.  LOL.  Tivi’s been crying a lot lately… including during her presentation.

As for how my presentation went?  I’m not sure… I have mixed feelings.  I was asked if I used props… my answer was no.  I was going to, but I decided against it at the last minute.  Why not?  When I sat down and thought about it, my presentation was not driven by facts and figures… all that information was in my written proposal.  My presentation itself, the spoken portion, was the emotion behind it.  The things that you couldn’t really convey in a text document… the things you need to hear out of someone’s mouth to know just how passionate they are about it.  THAT is what my verbal presentation was.  And as such, I took a page from my dance teacher’s book: your most important prop in a dance is YOURSELF.  Anything else is a bonus… and if you choose to use a prop, it should enhance your dance, not distract from it.  I felt that for my presentation personally, using a prop would’ve distracted listeners from the words I was saying.  The words that were not only coming out of my mouth, but pouring out of my heart.

I’m not sure if you can see it, or if the judges noticed…. it was a small thing… but underneath the necklace I’m wearing, there’s a small heart tattoo on my throat.  I speak directly from my heart, always.  And Charity Challenge was no different.

I wrote out a transcript of what I said, just in case anyone hadn’t been able to hear.  So… the following is roughly what I said for my charity challenge presentation… “The Nation”… a fund-raiser for Relay for Life.

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One Billion Rising.  Take Back the Night.  The Megan Meier Foundation.  The Sandy Hook School shooting.  These are all charities I have supported in the past.  So why did I choose Relay for Life as the topic of my presentation today?  At the risk of shocking a few of you who don’t know me well enough to know this… I am a Caregiver… and a Survivor.

It is estimated that in 2014, among American Men & Women, there will be approximately 1,665,540 NEW CASES of cancer… and 585,720 cancer-related deaths.  That is 1,665,540 more people in America that have to hear they may or may not make it to their next Christmas… their next birthday… to see their children or grandchildren grow up.  And that is 585,720 more people that will lose their fight… the epitome of “bad things” happening to “good people”.

I was told a story by the creator of my headpiece, made specifically for this challenge, about how the typist behind the keyboard of her five year old RP daughter was diagnosed with cancer in 2012.  She had surgery in February of 2013 and is now in full remission.  They call her Ladybug, and as a tribute to her and an encouragement for myself and anyone else fighting their fight right now, Dainie added ladybugs with “Relay Purple” spots into this headpiece.  Ladybug is a shining light in the darkness that is this dreaded battle against cancer.

Something needs to be done to perpetuate that light.

What my event, “The Nation”, proposes to be is a way to combine my three greatest passions in Second Life: Dance, Fashion, and Fund-raising for the Relay for Life.  “The Nation”, a play on words for the term “Relay Nation” referring to the whole RFL community in Second Life, is a fashion experience… not just a runway show.  It proposes to bring together models like myself who are Survivors and/or Caregivers of this dreaded disease that we call cancer in an entirely danced production, showcasing exclusive creations from some of the best designers in Second Life.  All for the good of Relay for Life.

I believe my favourite part of the event is that due to a few wonderful sim/parcel offers that are on the table at the moment, I will not have to charge designers a “fee” to participate in this event.  Their participation will be contingent solely upon a freewill donation of their choosing.  This leaves less pressure about money, and keeps the focus about fund-raising.  I don’t think you understand how unbelievably excited I am about being in a position to make that offering.

More detailed plans for the event including a time line that begins now and ends after the event takes place in July can be found in the proposal notecard that you received from me at the beginning of this presentation.

As I approach the end of my time with you this morning, I would like to leave you with the words that are written at the Conclusion of my proposal, words that came straight from my heart:

Cancer remains the second leading cause of deaths in the United States… accounting for 1 out of every 4 deaths.  Look around you… no, seriously… cam around this room right now… there are more than 4 of us in here.  To this day, I have survived.  Some day, if advances in research and technology are not made, I may not.  There is no remission for me… there is no happy ending for me… not without further research…

Some day, you may receive your news… and some day, you may lose your fight.  This is the reality of cancer.  This is the feeling, that sadness deep in the center of your spirit that innocent people are losing their lives in a battle they never asked to fight.  This is the reason I will continue to fund-raise for Relay for Life until I am no longer able.  We WILL beat this disease one day.  One day I will happily be able to stand before you and proclaim that we are estimating ZERO new cases of cancer and ZERO cancer-related deaths in the coming year.  One day.

Until then, I have to relay.

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*~* I Am Not Your Expectation… *~*

Shape: MINE
Skin: Kaelyn 09 (India) – Glam Affair
Eyes: Spectral Eyes (Field) – IKON (previous FaMESHed release; now in store)
Hair: Hair Base 04 – Action Hair
Hands: Avatar Enhancement Hands (Gesture) – Slink  *~* rigged mesh *~*
Nailcolor Applier: Dark Set (Purple) – Nailed It
Eyeliner: Liquid Liner (IN&OUT; Up) – DAMNED Bodyshop
Lipstick: Glossy Pout Lipstick <Dark> (Plum) – Pink Fuel
Gown: Ligeia Gown (Envy) – Dead Dollz  *~* rigged mesh *~*
Wrist Corsage: “Rose” Wrist Corsage (Gothic Dusk) – Lapointe & Bastchild
Necklace/Right Bracelet/Left Ring/Earrings/Forehead Jewel: Lasya Jewelry Set – Lazuri
Headpiece: Tivi Headwrap (Colour of Couture) – Artizana  (this particular headpiece is not in store, that I know of)
Lantern: Holding Lantern – [Tia]

Pose: Made it myself!  *Giggles*

Location: Misty Mountain Romance
* Seriously… I take most of my blog pictures here and I still find new places to go and take different pictures… LOVE this sim.  Plus there’s open rez, so if I ever run out of places to take pictures, I can just rez something.  Haha.

Blogging Tune: “I Am Not My Hair” – India Arie Ft. Akon

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