When I was a little devil, I had a dreaming mind. I would listen to music and imagine stories in my head. I loved the movie, “All Dogs Go to Heaven” and envisioned my own cartoon canine running beside the family car. I even had long sticks in which I horribly tried to enact Abigail's staff fighting form in the hit sitcom, Xena.
I have met Ada before but never in any intimate or real way. Therefore, I have never really met her until the photoshoot. Once I did, I was reminded of my younger daydreaming self. More importantly, the self I wish I was at her age. Not only does Ada’s name sounds like it belongs in the next Star Wars movie, but this tiny heroin was captivating. She encompassed imagination, wonder, excitement, and strength all in one 9-year-old body. This says a lot because I have always felt anything younger than 14 was too young for me to acknowledge anything interesting in a conversation but alas, Ada is not that kind of girl.
This photoshoot represents how girls, young women, and adults are not just one shade of color. We are many things and should not be defined by one stigma or even two. Though I personally tend to stigmatize myself as a hippie that is vegetarian and loves yoga, I also like to dress up and pay a pretty penny beauty products. I am by no means a minimalist nor hoarder of any sort. I am both and so is Ada in her own light.
Though Ada’s attention span was as I expected of a restless mind, I watched her and guided her through some poses when she had a sparkle of clarity. She was excited at first, ready to strike a pose even before the camera was ready. However, other times, she wanted to climb trees, play pine cone throwing games, and eat snacks. She was curious and just wanted to live life, live in the moment, and not be restrained. How could I restrain such a free spirit? I didn't. When she was ready or when her mother rained her back to this earth did I make attempts to snag a picture.
On the flip side - Ada is a great actress when she tries. When I told her to imagine her enemy behind a rock or bush so she could get into character, she quickly understood the command. She narrowed her eyes, stuck a defensive/offensive pose and glared passed her weaponry. Later, When her mom told me Ada truly believed she had mutant powers, my husband and I confirmed even more indefinitely that Ada was one-of-a kind. And not in a “everyone special” kind of way. But she had an imagination and intelligence that impressed my husband who also does not share excitement about being around young ones - though amazingly patient man.
Ada is an impressive and strong-willed individual. I hope she carries that through her younger years and older age. I see her finding that true balance in life that enables her to carry her childlike spirit now into her adulthood. If she believes, she will be a strong Warrior Queen she imagines herself to be now. That kind of Ada is the kind I still aspire to be today.
Hairstyling by Madeline Pidgeon: Click here to go to her FB page.