It is Christmas and it is time for family photos. I am taking my son to the east coast to spend Christmas with my family, many of whom he has not met yet. We have a tradition in my family of going out to a Christmas tree farm and spending the day. This year is the first year in 30 years that we have had a baby in the family. My son will not be little forever and I posed the idea that we should get family photos done. I was really surprised by the response I received from my family. No one jumped at the chance to have photos done. Everyone is self-conscious about having their picture taken. They have gained weight or they are not has young as they used to be. They are all worried about how they look in the picture and don't want evidence of this time in their life. This made me really sad because this is such and exciting time in my son's life. Memories fade but pictures capture a moment forever. I have made an effort to get a picture of everyone who has held him or come to visit him so that when he grows up he has evidence of how many people love him.
While watching an old episode of the Katie show on my DVR I was introduced to the article The Mom Stays in the Picture by Allison Tate on Huffington Post. I shared it with my mom in hopes that we can convey the message that my son deserves to have photos with the people who love him. He deserves to see how they looked at him, how they hugged him, how they played with him; how they were present for him.
I know many moms feel uncomfortable in photos just as Allison Tate did. They are uncomfortable with the way their bodies have changed and self-conscious about their lack of grooming. One thing that I keep in mind when I am reluctant to take a picture on one of these days, is that my husbands mother died when he was 15 from breast cancer. One thing he has to remind him of how much his mother loved him are the pictures he has of the two of them together. We need to learn how to embrace the moment and that includes embracing who we are.