About Me:

Aloha! I'm Wendy Kennar. I'm the mother of a seven-year-old son and a wife living in Los Angeles. I was a public school teacher for twelve years until a chronic medical condition made it necessary to leave my teaching career.

I've always been described as "quiet" - really, I'm just biting my tongue. I've got lots to say, and lots of thoughts to share, I just prefer to write them. That's the purpose of this blog. Each Wednesday, I post a personal essay offering my observations and thoughts.

A few fun facts about me: I've wanted to be a writer since second grade, when my teacher, Mrs. Jones, made me a "book" with a yellow construction paper cover. I have never learned to whistle, have always preferred sunflowers to roses, and have spent my life living within the same zip code.

Through the years, my writing has been published in the Los Angeles Times, Christian Science Monitor, United Teacher, GreenPrints, L.A. Parent, DivineCaroline.com, RoleReboot.org, XOJane, and Brain, Child Magazine. Additionally, my personal essays have been included in several anthologies, including: The Barefoot Review, Beyond the Diaper Bag, Lessons From My Parents, Write for Light, Being a Grown-Up: A User's Manual for the Real World, Ka-Pow!, How Writing Can Get You Through Tough Times, Breath and Shadow, The Grey Wolfe Storybook, and Sisters Born, Sisters Found.
I am a regular contributor at MomsLA.com, and you can also find me at Goodreads.

Thanks for stopping by and reading my blog. Feel free to comment and share my blog with others!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Seeing Clearly, Now

   Used to be my mom’s photographs were dutifully developed, dated and tagged, placed in protective albums, and stored on a shelf where they were rarely viewed.  My mom has since emptied her albums, filling a large wicker basket with photos spanning the life she and my dad have shared for over thirty-five years.

   I recently stuck my hand into the basket and saw the seventh-grade version of myself smiling back at me.  Hair in a pony-tail, standing in our living room, modeling my new p.e. uniform for junior high school.  I felt very grown-up, wearing the same colors as USC.  

   I was going to junior high school.  I would have several different teachers.  I would use a locker.  And  I had p.e. class.  Every day.  With boys.  And I had to wear these shorts.

   The picture shows me smiling.  I was home; it was safe.  

   School was another story.  In school, the shorts were never long enough to cover what I thought were chubby, chunky thighs.  I wanted knee-length shorts, not burgundy shorts that ended inches above my knees.  

   I never saw myself as pretty.  And truthfully, it’s something I still struggle with.  Back then, I knew I wasn’t pretty.  Except the picture shows I was.  My legs were slender.  My smile, wide and open and bright.  And I didn’t see it then.

   It saddens me to know that I beat myself up back then for no reason.  All that time and energy wasted, worrying about the way I looked, telling myself how awful I looked.  And I didn’t.

   I’m honest enough to acknowledge that I am my own worst critic.  I can’t always see what’s really there; I can’t always see myself the way others do.    

   But seeing that picture of myself in my p.e. uniform really made me take notice.  I don’t want to keep repeating the same mistakes.  I don’t want to miss out and not see, not acknowledge the me that’s really there.


  1. Honey,
    I love your smile!
    I love the scent from your hair when I hug you!
    I love the golden sparkle in your beautiful brown eyes!
    I am so thankful for you and marvel at your beauty inside and out!
    I enjoy you being you!
    Love, Paul

  2. Wendy! I love you! You're beautiful inside and out! I am so happy and thankful that you are in my life! We all can be our own worst critics. Who knows me better than I do? You're an amazing person! Never forget that! I'll never tire of telling you ;) Happy Thanksgiving! *HUGS*

  3. Yes,you are my daughter,but you are a very very BEAUTIFUL and SPECIAL person.Many people including myself have told you over the years how beautiful you are but you would never believe us and for that I am so sorry because you are truly BEAUTIFUL both inside and out.If you recall years ago when ever we were out people would always say you looked like "NATALIE WOOD",and that is one hugh compliment.Forget what anyone ever says and always remember you are "BEAUTIFUL" and stop beating yourself up.Anyone who has you in their life should feel blessed to know you.I love you and I am very proud of you,and so thankful you are my daughter and my friend.

  4. You are a beautiful person, inside & out. All people around you are fortunate
    to have you as a friend and associate. You are to be commended on continuing your Blog despite your health issues. Your Mother & I are proud of you.

    Love, Dad