Tiahna Skye, 57, at her home in Bend

I met Tiahna while photographing at an event not long ago. I can't say exactly what it was that drew me to her, but she actually has a good word for it - resonance. There was a resonance there. She accepted my invitation and we put something on the calendar. I met her at her home and had a very warm and calm conversation. She has a very soothing voice and a relaxing and safe energy. And loads of nuggets of wisdom. And a very friendly cat named Shovel.


Who are you?

I'm Tiahna. I am a human. A citizen. I'm someone who lives passionately and curiously and deeply. That's who I am. 

Where do you come from and what brought you to Bend?

I most recently came from California. I was actually born on the East Coast. I came to Bend - you could say impulse or instinct - somewhere in between. I'd had a big kerfuffle with a company I'd been working with for 10 years. And I had a friend who had moved here. I asked if I could come visit for a couple of days to clear my head and think about how I wanted to respond to the situation. I came up and woke up the next morning and decided to quit and move here (laughs). My friend is a planner and was pretty surprised and asked if I was sure, if I didn't want to think about it. It just was time. I threw it all up in the air and landed here.

What do you like about Bend?

There's lots I love about Bend. The beauty. The lifestyle. The rhythm here suits me really well. I feel like people are real and in their bodies and, coming from the Bay Area, it's so different how people inhabit their bodies. And there's just like this comfort - physical comfort - here. People are happy. People seem content with their lives. There isn't that constant churning and scratching to keep up with the Joneses. I like that a lot. I've discovered kayaking, which to me is kind of like a direct path to Heaven. Kayaking in Hosmer Lake, I could die now. It is one of the most beautiful places on the Earth. Another favorite of mine - I'm a swimmer - and Lucky Lake in the summer time is, I don't know if I should be saying this publicly because there is never anybody there - I have the whole like to myself, it's so beautiful. And it's warm, it's not a cold lake. 

How do you contribute to the community?

I'm redefining myself here. I am a life coach. I have a coaching practice. I actually work with people all over the world because most of it's done by phone. That's sort of my doing-ness here. I believe in contribution. I'm not contributing like on a volunteer basis or in those kind of obvious ways right now. I am contributing in living with integrity. And living with kindness. And being part of what I love about people here and expressing my own contentment and happiness and positivity. 

What do you wish for the future?

I think of growth as sometimes we inhale and sometimes we exhale and Bend is clearly on an inhale. My wish for the community would be to be soft in that expansion. And really open to it, rather than create resistance to it. And I'd like for us as a community to really look at not whether or not growth is going to happen, because it is happening, but how we want to embrace that and be with it. And how we want to protect the beauty and the lifestyle here. And the flavor that's Bend. That's what I want for Bend. For me, world peace (laughs), physical comfort. I'm a pretty content person. I enjoy my life a lot. And when I don't, I unravel that until I do. 

Change is inevitable and we all have different relationships to it. I try and go with the flow, at the risk of sounding totally esoteric. I have one more wish for Bend, though - just occasionally less beer and gear talk! It's great, but occasionally something a little deeper. 

Anything else you want to add?

I want to show up really big in supporting love and kindness on this planet and community. So anybody who wants to use me in that way is welcome to.