Hello there... Jen Matott here to share one of my layouts this month with the "Honesty" kit. This was the first one I made this month. I have to say that this kit challenged me a lot. Not just with the theme but with the colors, shapes, and how to tell my story with it all. I love each piece and even though this month's layouts didn't flow from me as easily as usual, I am happy with what came forth. When I think about being honest on my pages, I sometimes freeze up. Maybe it's this endless cold spell and wintery weather, but I was just not motivated this month. It took some deep soul searching to really decide what I wanted to say. I thought about how my mouth can get me in trouble with those I care about as well as people outside my family.
I really have a hard time filtering my thoughts... it's a curse and a blessing that I have so much fire inside me that it seems to overflow out of my mouth when I'm mad or passionate about a topic. There are a few things that get me being honest to the point of defensive... school/ education, collective bargaining teams (unions), Art, and pet peeves (such as: people who use disrespectful names for people, leaving turn signals on, stupidity in public, and the horrors of Wal-Mart :), guns, and crimes against women. I can easily get very worked up about these topics and sometimes do not let others speak their mind without it turning into an argument. I just can't help myself. It's not all bad. I stand up for myself and my beliefs but it also makes it hard for me to listen and identify with those that argue with me.
I have a lot of symbolism in this page. The paper with the speech bubbles was perfect for this idea. I liked all the different sizes and colors to surround my photo with. My photo also was a symbol of trying to silence my brutal honesty at times. I added the hashtag #honest because I do tend to vent on social media sites even though I know it may be to my detriment.
It has been a sore spot with my family about our differences in views on politics and business in general. I am part of a profession that relies on unions to protect job duties, pay, working conditions, and evaluation. As a teacher, I am protective of the complexity that is my career. My family and some friends are part of private business and we do not always see eye to eye. Many heated debates have turned into arguments that end in me feeling like I should have kept my mouth shut for the sake of peace. It's hard to keep my feelings inside when they are being attacked by ignorance or a well meaning comment. With certain people I can't be honest because it turns into arguments because neither of us are willing to stand down from our opinion.
It's hard to know when to hold your tongue and when to defend your views. It's never easy to find the line between defensiveness and honesty. Apparently, I need to work on it still.