Most mothers are all-too happy to take pictures of their new baby or bundle of kids, yet very few take the time to put themselves in front of the camera. Sometimes, it's out of necessity, because who else is going to take a snapshot of that one precious moment you want to remember forever? Other times, you don't feel "camera ready" in your messy bun, yoga pants and two-day-old shirt. Understandable, sure, but I think moms need to include themselves in more family photos. After all, they are part of the family (and probably spent time growing that family, then either pushing or having that family cut from their bodies).
I love taking pictures with my daughter, and the majority of those pictures tend to be selfies. When it comes to taking candid shots, however, I'm usually the one behind the camera, because I'm usually the one witnessing whatever moment I want to capture in photograph form. If I don't act fast, that moment will be gone, as my daughter rarely sits still long enough for me to even pull the camera out in the first place.
As a result, I find myself looking through pictures and wishing I was in more of them. Sure, we still have our silly selfies, but they're few and far between, and they aren't indicitive of the everyday life I've created for myself and my family. In the end, I know I won't care how my hair looked or how old my shirt was or if I was "camera ready." I'll care about remembering that one time my baby girl and I were smiling or laughing or playing. So, for that and the following reasons, moms should start including themselves in more pictures.
Your Kid Doesn't Have To Always Be The Center Of Attention
Look, I get it: kids are adorable and it's pretty difficult not to at least want to snap pictures of their antics on a daily, if not hourly, basis. However, you're important too, mom. You deserve to be in pictures and be complimented and be on the receiving end of some well-deserved attention. Just because you've procreated, doesn't mean absolutely everything has to be about your child. You matter, too.
You Are Part Of The Family, Too
If it's a family photo or part of a family outing or anything to do with the family being together, well, you're part of the family so you should be included. No family member left behind, I always say.
You'll Want To Remember Being Involved In The Memories You've Captured
I'm not saying you need to be in pictures, or even take pictures, in order to remember when something happened. Honestly, there are so many moments that will forever be engrained in your mind (giving birth, the first time your baby crawled or walked or said a word) that might not be captured in a photo, but will never be forgotten.
However, when you do look back at certain photographs and for certain reasons (like a graduation, a wedding or just because) you'll probably want to be there. I can't imagine continuously answering questions like, "Where were you, mom?" would be that endearing.
It'll Help You Document Your Journey As A Mom
While it's pretty incredible to look back at pictures and literally watch your kid change and grow and mature in a matter of minutes, your kid isn't the only one who has been changing and growing and maturing. You're constantly evolving (as a woman, mother and human being) when you're parenting another human being, and that's worth documenting, too.
When Your Gone, You'll Still Be Remembered
I, personally, love looking at photos of my great-great-great-grandparents and other family members I have never, and will never, meet. They're long gone, but hearing their stories and seeing their pictures is pretty cool. Who knows how we'll be documenting our lives in fifty years (or in the generations to come) but looking back and feeling a connection to past family members is rad, and I'd venture to guess you'll want to be remembered 100 or so years from now, right?
You Are Beautiful
If you're behind the camera because you are struggling to love your postpartum body or don't feel as beautiful as you once did, I say you're in need of a reminder. You're beautiful, in every single way. Your kids believe you're beautiful exactly as you are, and believe it or not you can set a body positive example by getting in front of the camera, smiling and documenting your lives together.
Mothers are often told that, since they have children now, they no longer matter. What they want doesn't matter; what they need doesn't matter; they're just in the background, doing whatever it is they need to do for their children. Nope. You're a big deal, mom, and you should act accordingly.
....And Not Just A Bystander
More often than not, the moments you're trying to capture are moments you've facilitated. Why not be part of them on paper (well, photograph paper), too? If you've put in a bunch of time and effort to get that birthday party together or prepare your kid for school, you should be in a picture or two. At least.
You're Worth Celebrating
You're a mom. You've done some pretty incredible things, like grow a human and birth a human and sustain a human and continuously raise another human. That's worth celebrating. I mean, yes, take pictures of the moment your kid walks for the first time, because that's pretty incredible, but you're pretty incredible, too. Make sure you're taking the time to celebrate you.