Why You (and I) Should Take Those Photos Now

So here's the thing. I spent most of the last five years (and more) with a camera in my hand and rarely making an effort to get in photos. I'm really good at hating pictures of myself. It's a gift of mine, really. One that convinces me to stay behind the camera and hardly ever get in front of it, especially with my kids.  And it's taken me way too long to realize that that's silly. There's no way that I'm going to look back at these photos in 5, 10, 15 or 20 years and wish I hadn't taken them. Might I wish that my house was cleaner or that I had real clothes on instead of pajamas, or that I was 10 pounds lighter? Probably. But is it worth not having any pictures of entire seasons of my life? NOPE. I'm convinced that it will be worth it to have tangible memories of this season. This messy, crazy, chaotic season that is only here for a short time and as hard as it is to imagine right now, I think that someday I'll miss things about this season. My son's bedhead after a nap, the outfits my daughter puts together when I tell her to pick her own clothes out, the fact that some days I actually can stay in sweats all day. Things that pictures will help me remember. 

Here's the other thing. I'm living this life now. Maybe 5 years from now I'll be my dream weight and be wearing fashionable clothes/not sweats everyday (unlikely) and my house will look like a Pottery Barn advertisement (extremely unlikely). So then I'll take some more pictures and document the season I'm in then. But if I let those things stop me from taking pictures now, then I'll also miss out on having pictures of myself, however I look, with my 2-year-old and 5-year-old, and I won't have another chance to get them. 

So starting this year, I've challenged myself to get in a picture with my kids once a week. Sometimes it's phone selfies on the couch when we're all still in PJs (REAL LIFE), sometimes I set up my "real camera" to take pictures while we're doing something around the house, sometimes my superstar of a husband takes a picture for us. It doesn't have to be earth-shattering. It doesn't have to be one I instantly love or want to post on social media. But I know, beyond a doubt, that they will be some of my most treasured pictures down the road. I'm already surprised at how much I love having some snapshots that actually have me in them.

So my plea to you is to take those photos  - start taking selfies, ask your spouse, mom, friend, neighbor, stranger on the street to snap a photo of you with your kids, hire a professional to photograph you (I don't care if it's me or not, find someone whose work you love and who you trust to document your life). I'm convinced I won't regret doing all of those things and I don't believe you will either.