An Open Letter to All the Mamas

I know you’ve been thinking about having family portraits taken.

I know you’ve put it off time and time again - just until you lose those last pesky 5 kilos (until those 5kgs somehow become 10 to lose..)

I know you want your family portraits to be perfect - they’ll be hanging on your walls for the whole world to see after all.

I know that when you look at the photos I’ve taken, all you will see are the lumps and the bumps and the lines around your eyes (when did they even appear?)

I know, I know, I know - I’m guilty of being you too.

But can I tell you something?

You will never get this time back.

Your kids will never be this little again. (this applies to your 17 year old just as much as it does to your newborn)

That thing your two year old does that fills your heart with joy, you’ll never know when they’ll do that for the last time, you might not even realise when it happens.

Your 16 year old has a world of opportunities in front of them, it won’t be long before they move out of home, maybe across the country or even the world, and you’ll be missing a time when you would curse them for leaving their wet towel on the floor.

Can I ask you something?

The last time you looked at a photograph of your own mother, your own grandmother, did you think to yourself “gosh Mum looks fat in that photo” or “geez Nan looks old”? Or did you look at those photos and think about how amazing these women are. About how they shaped you into the bright, smart, funny, loving human that you are today?

Do you think your kids look at photos of you and think about those 5kgs, or do they think about how it feels when you scoop them up in the biggest tightest hug that only a mum can give?

In 20, 30, 40, even 50 years time, maybe after you’re gone, and all your kids have of you are these photos, do you think they’ll care about your wrinkles? or will they think about the lifetime of smiles.

Do you know what I see when I photograph you?

I see how much you love your kids, and how much your kids love you.

I see the connection between you and your partner, those sideways looks and those inside jokes.

I see the heart and soul of your family.

I don’t see the lumps, the bumps, the lines.

I see you. I see your family in all it’s beautiful glory.

And that’s what I photograph.

So please don’t wait.

Your kids won’t stop growing because you want to lose 5kgs.

Be here, in the now and photograph your beautiful family as it is.

Because I promise you, you’ll never regret it.