LABEL: White female, AirForce Brat
This is a picture of a model U2 spy plane. My father was a pilot in the AirForce for 26 years and the U2 was one of the many planes he flew. This being the case, our family was uprooted many times throughout my childhood to move to a new place due to transfers. This little model plane has greatly influenced my life. Because we had to move so often, I had to learn at a very young age how to adapt. Adapt to a new home, new environment, new school, and new people. Although I didn't particularly enjoy moving so often at the time, I have since realized what a great blessing it was. I learned to get along with people quickly and easily and accept people without judgement. I know what it's like to be the new kid on the block, and it's not a very good feeling. Moving so often has influenced the person I have become today through how I interact and get along with people. I practice the skills I learn everyday and still draw from the experiences I had as a child. Without this little plane and what it represents...I would not be the person I am today.
This picture of the temple is something that represents me culturally. When I was five years old, my family adopted a special needs little girl. She was sealed to my family in the Washington DC Temple in 1997, one year after she entered our family. Having her enter our family has only changed my life for the better. She is now 15 years old, but the knowledge that she is sealed to my family for all eternity is something that I have thought about each day since then. This picture of the temple reminds me of where I have come from and yet how much potential the Lord has for me. Though temple attendance is something that I am unable to do daily, it is still something that I think about daily. Thinking about the covenants that have been made there affect the choices I make and the people I associate with.
Books are another part of my culture and family tradition. I started to love reading books when I was in the 4th grade. I fell off a swing during recess one day and crushed 2 vertebrates on my back. Throughout my 6 month healing process, my mom read the Harry Potter books to me. As silly and unconventional as it may seem, my mom and I created a tightly knit bond through reading Harry Potter. Granted, it would have happened regardless of what books we read, but it still had a great effect. Ever since then I have been an avid reader and it has become a part of my cultural identity. It is a way I relate with my family. Not only through novels that we read, but also through the scriptures. Reading the scriptures everyday is something that was essential in my growing up years and has stuck with me until this day. It is one thing that comes from my background, tradition, and occurs daily. Books are a major part of my life, especially the scriptures and are most definitely a part of my cultural identity.