I had a family portrait taken when I was 8, I was flaunting some aggressive short ponytails, and some then awesome, now nasty, large glasses, and my favourite knitted sweater with strange 3-D bobble flowers. It is one of my prized possessions (the photo, not the sweater.) I look at the photo and just see my mom, I really see her. I think about all that she has done and all that she is, and I feel incredible loved. It also brings back memories, of the walk to the beach we took for the session, of the fun we had choosing clothing, but mostly memories of a feeling, that we are family and I was important. We aren’t the same family we were then, shortly after that photograph my parents divorced, but that photo still represents who I was and who I still am. It takes me to a place of feeling incredibly loved.
As a mom, I know the great joy and easy pride I feel when I look at photos of my children.
When I look at photos of me, John and the kids, I once looked at my chin, (ugghhh) or I mock my one eye that is lazier than the other. Now after years of being photographed as a family I don’t respond with that self-criticism. Yes, I feel it, but I tuck it away, knowing that once it is hanging on the wall, and I walk by it on good and bad days, it will always bring that feeling that we are family. It will showcase my greatest accomplishment. I feel proud, not just of my children, but of John and I. It is lovely. It reminds my children how important they are to us, and all of us too each other.
The extra sweetness, is the feeling I know the kids will have when they are sitting where I am now.
So, when I first talked to Amanda about organizing her portrait I was thrilled that she was about capturing the children and her and Rob . Not only will it’s emotional value increase but it was ridiculously fun. This, fairly new to the valley, family is meant to be part of our community. They are funny, really, and honest and open.
Both the kids charmed the pants of me – J.J., with his I am six but I could pass for ten personality and Maddox with his joyful ways. On top of it, their boyish goodlooks are pretty hard to resist.
Thanks so much McNeil Family, I feel like I have some new friends.