(photo taken by Julia Bender)
Here’s the scenario:
You’ve spent the last 13yrs wanting to document every worthy moment through a camera and lens. You live in extreme guilt (and sometimes pain) when you don’t document said important moments. You try and tell yourself to be present, enjoy the moment as it is happening…and you do try and sometimes even succeed..but deep down you mourn the loss of capturing the perfect ray of light falling at the perfect moment illuminating the perfect expression or thought or mood. Deep down you wish you could have both, the experience and the recorded memory.
Being a Mom and a photographer isn’t always easy.
After being up for 48hrs+ strait, 27 of which I was in labor….17 of which I was in active labor…in my home..without pain medication….The number one thing people wanted of me was PHOTOS. “Where are the pictures?” “Can’t you just post a photo from your iphone” “We NEED to see her”.
I get it people and I truly did sympathize.
I wasn’t about to have the 1st photo of her shown to the world be a semi OK photo taken with a mobile phone. Sorry. This photographer knew her daughter deserved more.
So while she was yet one day old, I stole 10mins and tried to photograph my newborn. Emotions were running high. Family was waiting in the family room to meet her..but I only had 10mins of daylight, 1omins left of day one. 10mins to photograph a moment I had been anticipating for years..her 1st photoshoot. So of course I was in tears. “This isn’t what I wanted!”…”I need more time!”…Standing was still uncomfortable. My emotions were fragile and so was my body. I held my camera with shaky hands and proceeded to climb to a standing position on top of my bed to get the right angle. Grant was helping to hold me up and with tears running down my face, I took a few shots.
Taking photos has gotten a bit easier…but still it’s a constant balance between me as a photographer and me as a Mom. I know I am both..that won’t change but I have found that at times the need to give in to the lack of perfection. Giving in to the fact that executing the vision exactly as I see it in my mind won’t always happen.
Our families theme for the year is “Creating Space”. In this situation I have found the need to let certain things go in order to create space for others. I need to hold her and feed her and look at her AND not because she needs it but because I need it…sometimes more that putting her down to get the shot.
Which leads me to the reason of this post! (Thanks for sticking with me this far). My friend Julia was coming over to meet our little gal and I asked her to bring her camera and get a few shots of us as a family. So glad I did. We don’t have a lot of the three of us and the ones of her and I are always tinged with the stress of me setting up the shot, checking exposure etc. Julia came, shot and presented these beautiful photos…meanwhile I was holding, loving and kissing my best girl and guy.
I am going to get this photographing my own child thing down. Mark my words. Trust me I have already taken thousands of photos of her (not kidding). I am planning on posting some more images of our first few weeks together this week…that is unless I am too busy being present.
Any professional Mom/photographer combos out there that want to share their best tips for balancing the two roles?