Photo credit: Amy Manion
We met by the infamous Feidler statue that I apparently never recalled seeing on the Charles River Esplanade. For some of us, it was our first time there. It was a beautiful, sunny, breezy day. Plenty of people were enjoying the park just like us. There were people riding bikes, running, dogs walking, swimming, and sitting. There were beautiful flowers and trees, the Boston skyline, the river. Water skiers caught our attention. We captured it all.
We were tasked with observing, being mindful of our surroundings, walking, being curious, and capturing it on the camera. A brief overview of photography themes were mentioned: color, texture, rule of thirds, before we took off to venture on our own. We went in groups but ended up each coming back separately, finding what we fancied, what made us take a second look.
We came together to share what we had captured. We ended with holding hands and stating what we were thankful for, ready to start the rest of our day with a grateful mindset. It was more than just the photography. We shared our stories of what brought us to the event, how we knew each other, how we were all connected. We shared our experiences, our struggles and strengths. It was all very spontaneous and natural. Asian women uniting to reflect and support one another. It was extremely empowering and a day I will not forget.
The photograph that stood out for me is not so special in it’s composition. It’s something I never would have seen if I had not been inspired to walk mindfully and observe my surroundings. A sticker on the side of a public trash receptacle with a recycling symbol on the side made this everyday, common object stand out for me, take a second look, and take a picture of it. It’s nice to be reminded of something that we can all use and practice more of.
The following is a brief recount of my hospital stay after my delayed left DIEP (Deep Inferior Epigastric Perforator) flat reconstruction surgery. I hope by sharing my experience, others might gain a sense of what it is like to have this type of operation and what to expect in the hospital. I would also like to dedicate this to all who cared for me at the health center.
Chien-Chi Huang is a middle-age Chinese American breast cancer survivor from Taiwan, who wishes to start a pilot project to empower the other Asian American breast cancer survivors with the skills and knowledge to do outreach and prevention work in their own communities. She currently resides near Davis Square, Somerville, MA with her husband, two teenagers, a dog, and a cat.