Sometimes, for a host of personal reasons, I decline to be in a photograph. Recently, someone lightheartedly challenged me about this. "Didn't you just encourage everyone to, 'get in the picture'...? Aren't you 'getting in the picture' more? Why won't you take this picture?" This questioning caught me a bit off guard in the moment, so I thought I would explain myself a little better here.
This particular situation was different to the context in which I urge women, including myself, to get in the picture. When I say that, I'm talking about being in the photos with your children, for your children. I'm talking about documenting a more complete picture of motherhood & childhood. Those are the photos I urge kindred mommas to be in!
You should never do anything you feel pressured to do! It's okay to kindly decline being photographed. You need not explain yourself. It's your prerogative to say no. No is enough; at least it should be.
I don't encourage mommas to get in the photo with their kids so they have something else to share on social media. I actually don't encourage you to share them anywhere. (I don't discourage sharing either.) I'm just encouraging you to be in these photo, to save these photos, to print these photos with you & your children together, for you and your children. If you choose to share them with the rest of the world, do it - that's your choice, too. But, please, don't feel pressured to do so.
Friend, I understand many forms of insecurities (body image, emotional issues, privacy concerns, etc.) that often cause us to hesitate being in photographs we're not taking ourselves & owning/controlling after the fact. Trust me, I get it! I don't ever want to encourage you to do something you're uncomfortable doing...
I just want to encourage you to do something I believe you'll regret if you don't - and that's being in the photos with your children.
Anyway, no pressure here. Just an outstretched hand to hold as we document our stories with heartfelt images.
Friendship is the finest balm,