In the nine years that I’ve been a mom, I have very few pictures of me with my children. I’m often the one taking the pictures or holding the video camera. When I’ve had professional photos taken of the kids, I’ve shied away from the camera more often than not. There was always an excuse… I wasn’t wearing makeup. Or my shirt had spit-up on it. Or I wasn’t feeling pretty or I was feeling fat. Vanity always won out over preserving the memories.
When I decided to get newborn photos of my girl, I had already decided that I wouldn’t get in front of the camera. I was less than month post-partum when I booked the appointment at Willow Baby Photography. I was sure that I’d have a puffy face with dark circles under my eyes. I was certain that I’d look horrible. Once again, vanity was rearing its ugly head.
But that morning, as I rushed to get my oldest off to school and get my toddler to sit down to eat something more than a cheese stick for breakfast, I slapped on a little mascara and some tinted moisturizer. I didn’t want the photographer to see me for the frazzled mom that I often am. I wanted to look the part of a polished mom of three even if the reality is that I really wanted to nap on the couch while she took photos of my baby girl.
At the end of the shoot, Denise asked me if I wanted to take some photos with my baby. Before I could come up with some excuse in my head, I heard myself saying “Yes.” Suddenly I was in a panic. I still felt like the frumpy new mom of three. How could I possibly take a good picture? I told myself that I wouldn’t have to order any photo that I didn’t absolutely love. I was certain that I wouldn’t love any picture of me.
Denise had me close my eyes, hold my baby close, and kiss her. From then on, I just felt close to my baby. With the two of us basking in the sunlight from the bay window, I let go. I smiled. I relaxed.
A week later, I received this photo…
It’s my favorite picture from the photo shoot. And it’s proof that I need to let go vanity and let beauty live in the moment. I’m vowing to get in front of the camera more often. Capturing the memories is more important than my ego.