Genuine To The Core - Kern

I met this woman a few years back during a time where I was searching for answers.  On life.  On death.  On how to truly love people.  I found friendship in her on this one particular night and it was a time I will not forget.  She is not only friendly and cheerful, but she is kind to others no matter where they are in life.  She treats others the way she would want to be treated and she loves with a wide and open heart.  I admire her for her bravery, for her openness and for her desire to make our world a better place.

Today I get to show off my friend, Kern.  She is an enchanting lady, full of life and love and going over her answers to my questions was a gift to me.  Cheers to this genuine lady.  Enjoy!

1.  If you had thirty seconds to describe yourself, i.e. who you are, what would you say? 

I am girl born in Wyoming to parents who loved me. And lucky me. And from life experiences, I have become a feminist, a lover, a friend, a mother, a jokester, a girl who wears her heart on her sleeve, wants to save the souls of humans through kindness.  I am a secular humanist and only have the energy to care about how humans live now, this life. I have zero energy to give to any thought or ideas about a God or Gods and what happens after death. I laugh at everything, because humor is what I think will save me in most of my saddest moments. 

2.  What is the one accomplishment in your life that you are most proud of? Why? 

I am proud of escaping the bubble and complete mind-controlling view of the world of Mormonism. It would have been the death of me had I not broken free. I don’t know that I am proud of that. Can one be proud of something like that? I don’t think so. I’m not. It just is. I once took a photo though of a sunset that still, to this day, takes my breath away. I am proud of that.

3.  If you could trade places with one person for a week, famous or not, living or dead, real or fictional, who would it be and why? 

I wouldn’t trade places. Ever. That is one week I can’t get back of being me. I’d not want to miss a moment. If I could sit and talk with someone, however, it would be Carl Sagan.  We’d smoke a bowl and discuss the universe.

4.  What is your current career and how did you choose it? 

I have a career of taking photos and creating art. I work at a desk for money. It’s not a career though. It just pays the bills and is completely uninteresting. I love the company. The owners are my friends and I am loyal to their cause and product. But it’s not a career. Life is my career. And I create art.

5. What are some examples of your work?   

Landscapes. Sunsets. Photos of humans smiling. Photos of humans crying. Pictures of my son dressed in drag. Photos of my cat and my dog and of a random Tuesday night.  If you care, you can search for Kernography Instagram.  I also take a lot of selfies of self expression. I take them of myself, because they are raw emotion that I can draw out of myself and share. I like that. I think maybe it could inspire someone else to feel and want to do it as well. It’s quite liberating.

6.  What are some things you are doing to change the world for the better? 

I carry my groceries bagless to the car. I don’t flush after every pee. I work in the dark or wear my shoes till they have holes. I give and serve and take photos to remember it all by. And I love and a kind and forgiving and try to not push my beliefs on others. Live by example, I guess.  Hopefully that will make the world better.

7.  If you were a tree, where would you want to be planted and why? 

I’d want to be a sycamore tree because they are just fucking beautiful. And plant me by the Spiral Jetty art piece in Utah.  I want a sign created and left there for my children and lovers to see.  Plant me as a tree (or spread my ashes ) and the sign will say, “This is what I wanted to show you.”  It is the most beautiful place on earth, that I have yet to see.

8.  Describe a crisis you have faced in life?  

Deciding to stay in my marriage of 21 years or leaving it and starting a new path. Both choices seemed hopeless. Both held pain and fear and all the things. Both seemed like the wrong choice. Both could go fuck themselves.  That was my attitude about it.  It kept me awake all day and night. It almost killed me. Literally. I don’t wish that experience upon anyone.

9.  How did you resolve the crisis and what did you learn from it?  

I had to make a choice.  And so I did. And upon making it, I chose to stick to it and then do everything I’d normally do…do the opposite of that. I figured that I got to the point I was by doing what I’d always done. So, it made sense to me to do the opposite.  I have found life on the other side of that choice, however, and the path that I am currently on is quite beautiful and breathtaking. There are stumbles and hardships, but most certainly, I feel I made the right choice and would not change it.  I no longer do the opposite, however.  I trust myself again to make good choices and to love completely.  I don’t think my crisis will ever be resolved. It will just be something that I have tried to fix and take care of and manage to the best of my ability. And I am okay with that.  I’ve learned to use my voice…that I even had a voice.  I’ve learned to say what I want, feel, need.  I think that is my most valuable lesson of all.  To use my voice. 

10.  If Hollywood made a movie about your life, whom would you like to see play the lead role? 

Anyone but Kiera Nightly. I just really dislike her acting.  Perhaps Laverne Cox. She’s a strong and gorgeous woman. I want that kind of woman to play me.

11.  If you had six months to live, what would you do? 

Live. I’d fucking live. I’d continue to love who I love; go to bed at night and snuggle up and breathe them in. I’d love my children and make them more breakfasts in bed, I suppose.  But really, I’m happy and grateful and content right now.  Sure there are hardships and things I’d like to change.  My biggest worry in my life is the future.  Where will I be and who will I be with. My family ties have grown extremely small over the past year, and so the fear of being alone is real for me. But, with 6 months that fear leaves and I’ve got the best 6 months ever ahead. And I suppose, now that I’m typing this, that really should be how I view my future, isn’t it?  That I have the best __months ahead of me and so just let go and fucking live.  Yep.  Well done questions. I’ve just grown a wee bit.

12.  What are your greatest treasures in this life? 

My ability to change. It really is. Change is hard, and I think I handle it well. I  mean, I struggle, but in the end, I accept it and work through it and then own it and finally, celebrate it.  And of course, getting to be loved and to love.  Love is the most heartbreaking thing. I mean, it has caused my heart to be fucking Shattered…little tiny pieces everywhere, pain so extreme that I remember laying on the grass one afternoon. I looked up and took a photo of a lilac flower.  And I imagined just dying, at that moment, and if I did, how beautiful it would be to not feel that pain anymore.  And then I got up and put my feet forward and moved on.  And then, as my heart heals, I find new love that I am so grateful for, so completely and utterly grateful for.  And that feeling is one of having my heart pumped up and celebrated and new.  And THAT feeling is also one of the greatest feelings in the world.  So…after that ramble…love.  Love is my greatest treasure. I seek after it.  I want to give it. That is a beautiful thing.

13.  Life after death or one life to live?  

Nobody knows, and those that do (if there are) aren’t talking.  I don’t believe there is a white god waiting for me to fall into his arms upon my death.  But I don’t claim to know if it is the end, either.  I don’t think about it much. I don’t really give a fuck about it, really.  It doesn’t concern me. I’m not dead.  What concerns me is living now.  I have one life to live right now, so that’s where my focus is. Love and live and give.

14.  If you won 10 million dollars in a lottery, what would you do with it? 

Invest and give. All of it to the proper care and feeding of humans. Especially within the trans and queer community. After a few experiences this fall, I would most certainly find a way to invest and give to the finding of a cure of HIV. It’s a disease that people are so very afraid of, and those who have it are forgotten and treated like they have something that will kill others simply because they are breathing the same air. It’s not true. They are dying. They need love and support. They need kindness. They need a cure.  And they need, most of all, to be treated like the beautiful humans that they are.  All the money would go towards it. I’d also buy a new phone. Because I’m a human after all and I do have a few thoughts about wanting something grand.  I’d get pretty excited about having the latest iPhone to take photos with.

15. What is your perception of the people in this world? 

That people are generally good. I think humans have evolved into being beautiful creatures who respond to self fulfilling prophecies.  Keep telling them they are worthless without a God in the sky to make them perfect, and they can’t rise up and be who they are…already perfect universe creations that are perfectly capable and more than willing (wanting, even) to be good just for the sake of  being good, kind, loving, giving, charitable, sacrificing, patient and big hearted.  Tell them they are all those things because they were born and the only reward upon death is the leaving behind a world better for having had their human print left from all the goodness they have done.  Tell them this, teach children this, and suddenly you will have a world of humans screaming out to be amazing, rather than a world of humans scared to just be who they are for fear of being destroyed by an unseen God. 

16. If you were the only survivor of a plane crash on a deserted island, what would be the first thing you would do and why?  

I would have a seat and consider what just happened and know that there was no big meaning, no hidden message, no grand plan.  But I would sit and listen, for hours or days, I am sure, to my inner voice. She would have much to say, I think, on her life and what it has meant up to the point where taking her last breath had a real possibility of not being heard, seen, or felt by another human again.  I mean, what else would there be to do, as a 1st item on a list of “not much to do because everyone is dead and you are stranded on a deserted island.”  I’d have my thoughts to sort through. Nothing more.

17. Wonder woman and Cat woman are having a drink together at a bar.  What kind of friends do you envision these women to be and why? 

I cannot see them as friends so long as they both have an identity other than what others have created for them.  As if cat woman is just nothing other than someone who fights “bad guys?” And Wonder woman. She is dressed for the beach. And yet we are supposed to take her seriously?  Did they pick out their costumes? Do they even have first and last names? What kinds of books to do they read, what kind of music do their hearts beat to?  Do they know themselves? Do we know anything about these women, other than they fight crime? Perhaps if I researched them both, I might find out a tidbit or two. But I doubt I’d ever actually get to know them.  And if they can’t know themselves, how can they be friends with each other. Well, they can be chit chat friends, I suppose, and share make-up tips.

18. What is one thing you want to leave this world and why?  

Art. I want to just leave art. Art changes lives. It is the carrier of thought. It begs others to stop and ponder, think and rest. It inspires. It lasts forever, in some way, because art is a creation. Creations never die. They might be destroyed, burned, thrown out.  But the energy it puts out, to even one soul…that lives forever.

19. What are any website links or pages you would like to share with the world?  I.e. your own work, other people and activities you are passionate about, etc.

Google is the God of this century.  It has all the answers, but won’t do it for you. You have to read what you find, research what you think you believe or don’t believe, and if you want to find my art, it has all the answers.  I like to laugh. It’s my favorite thing. And I like to learn others opinions and ideas.  So yeah. Those websites.  And oh, what the hell….

Because really, at the end of this list….it’s what I wanted to show you.


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