The Big Picture: Kyle Shepherd
Kyle Shepherd, media and public relations manager at The Louisville Zoo, says, “The human spirit always surprises me, yet I am not sure why. I think it is that we are vulnerable yet resilient that surprises me. I loved that during the pandemic we made sure to see our loved ones through windows in nursing homes and in other creative ways. This all goes back to the fact that we need each other. We need connection.”
Media and Public Relations Manager, The Louisville Zoo
What really matters to you? Doing my best to be more open, more knowledgeable, and a better human than the day before is what matters to me among many other things like my parents, friends, and fun (that’s important too).
Why does this matter, and has what matters to you changed in recent months? If so, why? In recent months what matters to me has intensified, not really changed.
Things like being open and listening to and not dismissing news of the day, empathizing with families across our nation, spending more time with aging parents in a safe way in the pandemic, and working in things that lift my spirits during these heavy times, like going for a drive top down in my little bug to see and photograph horses.
What has surprised you (as it relates either to yourself or to others)? The human spirit always surprises me, yet I am not sure why. I think it is that we are vulnerable yet resilient. I loved that during the pandemic we made sure to see our loved ones through windows in nursing homes and in other creative ways. This all goes back to the fact that we need each other and need connection.
How do you incorporate gratitude into your life? I keep a note in my phone, and add to it and check it as I need to. With technology, that has become my gratitude journal. It is true what you focus on is what you see.
How do you keep yourself calm in the midst of chaos? Connection is how I keep myself calm in the midst of chaos. It is the small things. Calling my mom daily, having a picnic with my friend or visiting my favorite animals at the Zoo or some horses that I visit frequently. Sometimes it is simply getting in my convertible and driving the beautiful backroads of Kentucky with the top down, visiting and photographing horses. Wind therapy is good for the soul.
What brings you the greatest joy? I wish I could say something profound here about my children (I don’t have any) or my life’s work, but the truth is…a beautiful spring day on the backroads of Midway, Kentucky, in my convertible, top down, visiting and photographing horses gives me extreme joy. My greatest joys are simple.
How do you bring joy to others? I am always one for a laugh, even in hard times, and the truth is I think bringing joy is as simple as a smile to a stranger. I smile even under my mask, forgetting it won’t translate. Strangers have even thanked me for the smile (pre-mask). Look up when you walk, not down at the sidewalk/floor.
What are you looking forward to? I am looking forward to a vaccine, and I am looking forward to the day where everyone feels safe being themselves in our country.