the truth in the perfect photo.
Isn't this such a great family picture?
100-something likes on Facebook and plenty of comments about how beautiful this photo is so I've gotten my validation on how amazing we look. We are clearly doing things so right around here. What more is there?
Well, there's a little more. How abouts we talk about the truth with this picture and what I see when I look at it.
First. First, you have to know that I truly do love this picture. I love love love it. I love the people in it (I should, I made 2/3 of them), I love the colors, I love the setting. I will cherish it for my lifetime. I know it's not a fancy photoshoot photo, but it works for me.
It also really works for me that Kate is perfectly covering all my middle regions that maybe haven't weathered the 20 pounds of baby in 20 months storm as well as I would have liked...
But here's what else I love.
(Let's just dive right in.)
I love that that's not Kate's head. Ok it is Kate's head - I didn't hire a stunt baby - but it's not the head from the original picture. The next picture in the rapid fire shutter clicks was when she finally looked up so I just moved her head on over into this one. Cheating? Oh yeah, for sure, 100%. But aren't most photos posted online cheats? At least I'm telling you this one has been rigged.
Shall we continue down the circle of trust rabbit hole?
Chuck is locking Sam on his lap with a fatherly grip to keep him from running out of the picture because Sam is definitely almost two years old. He's really good at it right now. Basically, Sam believes pictures steal his soul so he won't take posed ones. To get this "perfect" photo, our friend Mike is playing peek-a-boo like his life depended on it. Clearly, Mike nailed it.
And finally, for really, real, honest, truth about this photo: I'm about 2.5 mimosas into brunch to self medicate from the day before. Um. Please. Judgy wudgy was a bear and also a stay at home Mom with two under two.
I had had one of those days with the children. Not so much the "children" in the plural sense as much as the elder child. He's almost two and he's having his moments. And I'm having my moments learning how to navigate this stage. Low point was locking myself in my room for a self-imposed time out from Sam that Friday morning.
Actually that might have been a high point because sometimes you just have to walk away. Sometimes you just cannot change one more poopy diaper with a rolling toddler, get your hands covered in you know what, and be fine with it. Sometimes, you aren't fine with it. Sometimes, that's the last straw. This was one of those times. I had had enough of toddler boy for the morning.
Fe was on her way over to dye Easter eggs so she walked in to find my bedroom door shut and Sam sitting in front of it with an arrangement of stuffed animals and books he had brought down as peace offerings. I heard her walk in and say "Sam, where's your Mom?" So I calmly (nope) poked my head out of the door and said "She's not speaking to him".
Fe and Sam had a great time dying eggs together and I had a great time calming down, watching Katie nap, and taking a vacation from toddler land.
Some days are just like that.
I don't know how such a tiny person can make you so crazy, but it happens and it's the pits. No one wants to be the worst version of themselves and especially not in front of their kid, which I guess is why I put myself in timeout.
And why I was self medicating the next day, having a good laugh with my friends - who all have two year olds - and remembering that bad days are normal, timeouts are normal, and it's not all peaches and cream everyday.
That's why I love this photo. What this photo shows is the opposite of how everything felt so I'll treasure the make believe in this picture. Someday, I won't need a skin belly human shield. Someday, Katie will look at the camera every time. Someday, Sam won't need to be wrestled into a photo. And someday, I won't be taking timeouts from them because they won't be home long enough to make me this crazy.
Until then, this is my perfect photo of my perfect life with my perfect family no matter how unperfect it can be sometimes.