Sifting through photographs of my childhood, I noticed something…
My mom is missing.
It’s not that there are NO pictures of her, certainly there are. But often she’s only in the ones that are neatly posed, taken by others. There are only a handful of candid photos of her doing every day things and some of those are my favorite.
As moms, wives, and just women in general we tend to be more comfortable behind the lens – snapping memories of everyone else. Whether it’s a bad hair day, we still have 10 lbs to lose, or we simply don’t like being photographed, we are absent from our family’s photo history.
The reality is that our kids need proof we were there too. They will want pictures of themselves with Mom, regardless of how we feel about it. When I look at photos of my Mom as a younger woman, I don’t see any of the imperfections she sees.
I see love.
Embrace the Camera is a movement of women who are making a point of getting in the frame more often. This challenge was started by a blogger named Aleida Franklin, a mother of two young kids. She wrote this post in 2008 saying:
“There is a reason why I’m posting these pictures. Pictures that I’m actually in. Not because I think I’m all that and a trip to Hollywood. No. It’s because I’m actually tired of being worried about how I look and not taking or having very many photos of me with my children. I have very few pictures of me and my babies when they were babies, and I have myself to blame. Precious opportunities to capture on paper, lost because of my silliness. Well no more I say! One day I won’t be here and there will be hardly any pictures of them and their mama. So ladies, hand over the camera and get in those photos! Please. You’ll be happier you did.”
Aleida was killed 1 month later – the tragic victim of a red light runner.
The weight of her words hung on my heart. “One day I won’t be here and there will be hardly any pictures of them and their mama.” She had no way of knowing that one day would be 35 days later.
Whether you hand the camera to a helper, set a self-timer, or take a camera phone selfie I pass the challenge to you! Don’t wait for a holiday when everyone’s outfits are perfect. Step in the shot today – yoga pants, unwashed hair and all.
You’ll be happier you did.