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My Brain On War… (And FREE Photo Shoot for those who match my donation to relief efforts in Ukraine)

My Brain Before War….

Spring break, summer plans, what school should our kids go to next year?

Refinance, home repairs: roof, fence or paint?

And then…

24 February, 2022 Russia invaded Ukraine.

March 6th, 2022 PBS News: “1.5 million people flee from Ukraine, families choosing to leave their homes with only what they could carry, drag their children across borders.”

March 7th, The Guardian: “Children and volunteer soldiers: casualties of the war in Ukraine. UN has recorded 406 deaths and 801 injuries among Ukraine’s civilian population since 24 February.”

And now…

My Brain on War…

How many Ukrainians just finished remodeling their homes before they were bombed?

What is the insurance process like when your home is bombed?

My country falls apart when we are told we have to wear masks. What would happen if we were invaded and attacked by another country? Where would we go to get away?

My boys are obsessed with war: Star Wars, Marvel Wars, all the human wars. How do I take the glory out of war, without making them more anxious than they already are?

And what about the animals in the Ukraine Zoo stuck in their cages panicking during air raids. My dog is scared of the wind, the smoke alarm that beeps in the middle of the night, and the heater. I can’t imagine his heart would make it one night of air raids.

How are we supposed to go on living our lives, while millions of people are fleeing to save theirs?

What are we supposed to do?

What am I supposed to do?

Emergency Response Check List to Calm Brain Down…

  1. Give money. (Done: $250 to the zoo and $500 to the people.)
  2. Donate photo shoots and encourage others to give money. OK, here we go again:
    First 10 people to match my $750 donation to a charity of your choice from this list will receive a FREE 2 hour FAMILY photo shoot in the SF Bay Area, or one of the places I am traveling this year. (Businesses must donate $1,500 for a free photo shoot.) If 10 people make $750 donations… that will be $7,500 that we can raise together if you help spread the word. Send me proof of your donation to paigegreenphoto@gmail.com
  3. Talk to my kids: “Anything that’s human is mentionable, and anything that is mentionable can be more manageable. When we can talk about our feelings, they become less overwhelming, less upsetting and less scary,” Fred Rogers.
  4. Do research on how to properly listen to people I disagree with. Because I want to do all I can to promote peace… in my family, in my community, and beyond my bubble.
  5. Exercise. Drink water. Eat healthy. Sleep. (It is really late, so that last one isn’t happening tonight. I will try tomorrow.)

Most importantly, I am going to hold my family close and try to remember:

Life changes fast.

Life changes in the instant.

You sit down to dinner and life as you know it ends.

Joan Didion, The Year of Magical Thinking

If you want to help with the crisis in Ukraine and you need photos, or if you would like to gift a photo shoot to someone else on International Women’s Day, I have a list of single moms and women identifying business owners, who could use a free photo shoot, please make a donation to a nonprofit addressing the needs of those affected by the war in Ukraine ($750 for families or $1,500 for businesses) and send me an email with proof of your donation.

Thank you, as always, for your love and support. Together we can…

About the author paige green

Paige Green is a documentary and portrait photographer, whose storytelling approach to photography frequently addresses issues involving agriculture, land use, and food. Her work is featured in nine books and has been published in Glamour, National Geographic Traveler, New York Times Magazine, Conde Nast Traveler, GQ, Country Living, House Beautiful, and Culture. Paige lives in Petaluma, CA with a house full of boys.

All posts by paige green →

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