Updated: May 31
Disclaimer: This is a personal, vulnerable, true story.
I share this with you in the hopes that you give yourself a break, let your guard down and rest in the knowledge that you don't need to be perfect, your kids don't need to be perfect and sh** happens to the best of us!
"This is the worst photoshoot ever!"
I froze, as my 4 year old uttered those words, tears streaming down her face.
I felt the back of my neck get hot, as feelings of anger, shame, guilt & fear flooded through my body:
Anger - coz, "Hey, I'm really trying here & you just aren't co-operating! If you only did as you were told, we wouldn't be in this situation!"
Shame - coz "If my own kids can't bear doing a photoshoot with me, how can I call myself a photographer- and family photographer at that!"
Guilt - coz "Have I damaged my child? God, I must be the worst mum in the world!"
Fear - coz, well, fear just likes to hand out where these other emotions are.
So, for context, let me set the scene for what led up to that moment.
I had just had my youngest daughter via C-section a few weeks ago, in the midst of having COVID & the hacking cough that comes with it!
I coughed & vomitted all through my surgery & continued to cough for weeks after, which not only slowed down my recovery, but resulted in my stitches getting infected.
All this meant I wasn't able to do as many photoshoots of my "newborn" as I had planned to & time seemed to be slipping through my fingers.
I wanted to get pictures of our family together to celebrate this special time but it was a nightmare getting my husband & older kids to co-operate.
And honestly, to just find the time, space & physical energy to do the damn shoot... (you can sense my frustration, can't you!)
I finally got everyone lined up to doing the photoshoot that afternoon.
~I dressed up my 2 older girls - between the breastfeeding, nappy changes & a thousand snacks (if you have little kids you know what I'm talking about!).
~I dressed up the newborn
And was hoping for some help & co-operation from my husband to dress & look after:
~And secondly, our little one year old boy- who was clinging on to me like no tomorrow- he sensed I wanted to give him to his dad & so dug his claws into the skin of my neck...
But... un-surprisingly... the man fell asleep on the couch & could not be woken!
Here I was, trying to dress, feed, carry, calm, pose my 4 children on the floor...
...hurting my back & losing my sh** in the process!!!
(I definitely would not recommend...)
It really was the WORST photoshoot.
Not just for 4 year old Alegrie.
But also for 34 year old Me.
Now, don't get me wrong.
My kids usually LOVE photoshoots. They often dress up, pose & ask me to click pictures of them.
But this time was different.
I wasn't fully healed from the C-section & I pushed myself to do something that my body wasn't ready for, causing pain to myself & my family.
(Also, if you have a husband who cringes at the thought of a photoshoot, raise your hand! Lol)
After that experience, I decided-
To hell with trying to do everything on my own!!!
I can't be everything to everyone-
I can't be the mom AND the photographer at the same time.
So I gave up control, booked a shoot with another photographer & enjoyed the time spent with my family while the photographer took the responsibility of capturing our family of six.
It was an interesting experience for sure! If you want to hear what my experience was being on the other side of the lens, comment below & I'll tell you that story soon.
But for now, a BIG HUG
- you are doing an amazing job parenting those little minions!
P.S. If you want a stress-free photography experience (where you are NOT required to be perfect), but are not quite ready to book yet- get on my email list and let's connect!