Mom and Dad:

You asked me where I wanted to go. I never answered.

And then moments later you were ripped away.

Pronounced dead before I even realized what was happening.

I went into auto-pilot mode.

I marched like a little soldier.

I kept my chin up and feelings down.

I performed. I pleased.

I swallowed the concept that “appearing” like I had it all together was more important than wading through that dark swamp-land called “pain”.

People don’t like sad events. So I would tie up our story with a pretty bow.

I aimed to make sure others weren’t left in shock after explaining why you were no longer here.

In a world that is not comfortable with discomfort – I learned to push away the tears, squelch the grief, and deny what I was really thinking – and ultimately feeling. Humans seem to have an aversion to the slightest bit of unhappiness, and I could easily have found ways to numb away the anguish instead of face it head on.

And although I did not turn to outside substances to mask the emptiness, I did fill up on other’s approval.

I let their noise set the bar for who I should be.

I found my worth in whether people approved of me.

I found my value in whether people “thought” I was behaving the way they deemed fit.

And then one day I decided to answer the question you had asked me.

I decided I was done auditioning. I was done performing.

I decided my dreams mattered.

I decided my voice deserved to be heard.

My authentic truth was worth more than people’s “perception of me”.

And where I wanted to go was more important than the opinions and judgments of this world.

I chose creativity, design, artistic collaborations — and the ability to build something that is infused with every fiber of my being.

I chose what lights up my soul.

I chose to follow what I was always meant to be.

I chose freedom.

Freedom to be who I was born to be.

Freedom to create the life I have always wanted.

Freedom to be authentic above all else.

I had to face a lot of demons. I had to peel back A LOT of layers. I had to dive through some raw-gut-wrenching emotions in order to be able to answer that question, and arrive at a place of authenticity.

And now that I have found soulful bliss through being authentic — I want to inspire everyone I meet to ask themselves “What makes my soul come a live and can I be authentic to the journey it takes to get there!?

We live in a world full of heartache, full of disappointment. And unfortunately, the reality is, that that we all will experience at some moment in time, something that makes us question our very core.

But when you can honestly answer the question “Where do you want to go?” Than what matters, is not what happens to you, but how you move through those life-altering events.

With all my heart and soul, I thank you Mom and Dad. You have granted me an incredible life. And Soul Carrier is a manifestation of finally answering that question you posed moments before you were ripped from my life.

I wasn’t taken that fateful day you were killed– for I still had a mission to fulfill, authentic changes to implement, and a greater purpose to carry out.

Every handbag I design, every artistic-collaboration I am part of, every spark of creativity, it is all lighting the way to answer the question you posed to me.

It is all part of me finding my truth, and more importantly, living that truth out.

Soul Carrier is a fashion company. But my soul’s story is about finally just being me. And the “Authentic Change” collection is a symbol of the journey it took to get here.

Here is to asking yourself where you want to go. Here is to having the courage to pursue your journey to authenticity.

In memory of Paisan and Joyce Boonlorn who took their last breaths May 21, 2000…Gone from this realm but forever in my heart….

Jenn