Wyet-kp, (hello everyone)
Melody is a high school art teacher with a passion for humanity, equity and growth. She absolutely loves her life and her work. As an art teacher, every day Melody is honoured to witness people create something out of nothing or something that has never been imagined before. She believes creativity is the purpose of life, and is how we reward ourselves and forge meaning in our existence.
Being an artist is also an integral part of society. By utilizing the creative parts of our brain we produce a trust in ourselves. This trust frees us from the confinement of doing what we are told. With this freedom, artists can beautify and calm the world or cause discord and entice critical thinking. Without a creative mind, we run the risk of becoming dull and wearisome.
People describe Melody as an outside of the box thinker who treats everyone with respect, care and concern. She thinks of herself as a spherical thinker, always looking at things from every angle. She tries to observe without attachment, bias or judgment.
Of course, Melody is not Buddha but she does strive for balance.
One of her favorite things about Kamloops is the weather! She came from a very small northern town where winters felt like they lasted all year. She loves the heat and being able to grow things without a greenhouse with a supplemented heat source (aka a wood stove). Melody has always been a water baby so you can regularly find her in one of our many lakes on a hot day! Melody also likes the small town city atmosphere. She never felt that Kamloops was too big or too small. Of course there are things Melody would love to see added to the city, but she enjoys our community and all of the wonderful work that goes into Kamloops events. There is no place in BC she would rather live.
Melody could not live without the opportunity to learn and grow, laughter and challenge.
For her, Pride is symbolic and individual in its interpretation. It can mean empowerment. It can be a celebration and an affirmation. It involves politics and advocacy. It represents progress and liberation. It is a continual fight for equality/equity. It can refer to the month of August or a state of being.
For Melody, Pride as an event is a wonderful example of our city at its best. It is an opportunity to reflect on and celebrate how far we have come as a community. It is a time to identify where we need to go in the future. We can not forget the past. It is important to honor that Pride originated with the marches on Christopher Street that memorialized the Stonewall riots. These riots legitimized the concerns of the LGBTQ+ community while giving strength to the voice of change. But, as long as LGBTQ+ kids are being bullied, queer people are committing suicide, hate crimes are occurring, queer people are sidelined at work, or anything detrimental is happening to a person because of their sexuality or gender, then we still have reasons to march. LGBTQ+ continue to work to be visible, tolerated, accepted and ultimately celebrated. We should also march for those who cannot march for themselves. We are stronger together.
Kukwstsetsemc (thank you)
Photos courtesy of Kathleen Fisher Photography and Aspect Film Works