Monday, September 9, 2013

Behind the Photo Shoot

It was a long shot (ha!) from the start:  scheduling a family photo shoot the day after first soccer games and a sleepover at our house, during a heat wave and amidst our Adjustment Time.  Husband was all in, though:  he wanted a family photo to use for cards for the countless thank yous we will write to our dear friends who have been feeding us, gifting us, cheering us.  Meanwhile the girls scowled at the long-sleeved black shirts and jeans I set aside for them.  They scowled in general.  It had been a rough morning of sibling rivalry and poor attitudes.

Except not really that rough, unless you acknowledge that sleepovers turn children into ugly, whiny, irrational shells of their former selves.  Big Sis was in full throes of Sleepover Detox:  Crying,  bemoaning her pitiful self.  I had little sympathy, having endorsed her sleepover and next-morning pedicures and endured little sleep, myself.

We adopted the Get With the Program approach:  You will go, and you will smile and you will Do This because we are asking you to and it's about Family and Knock It Off, for the love of all things holy.  She and her red-rimmed eyes trudged into the car, and we apologetically showed up on our photographer/friend's doorstep.  She was glad to see we were not perfect, after all, as our marketing director suggests.  The girls commenced having trouble sharing the same space right away, what with one of them touching the other accidentally.  I could tell by Husband's frozen jawline it would be a long afternoon.

Tootsie took stage first, though, and was marginally cooperative herself, squirming and hiding her eyes behind her little hands, versus curling up in sweet sleep like the babies in the pictures adorning the walls of the studio.  She paused for one bottle and a breastfeeding top-off as well as some gnawings on her binky before our photographer could cajole her into some relaxed positions.

Thank you to Melissa of Just Hatched Photography!

Next came the photos with the girls.  There were some dorky grins and fake smiles, but the magic came when Tootsie was in the arms of a sister and they were directed to look at her.  No more fighting and dirty looks, just pure love and adoration.  Thankfully caught on film.  Husband and I joined them and we pulled off some Wholesome Family Togetherness too.

It's the whole Facebook thing, right?  The images we project can be deceiving.  Our photos are lovely and capture our love for one another and our closeness.  But in any family, and certainly in ours lately, there's exhaustion, frustrations, emotions across the spectrum burbling underneath.  So I'm capturing the outtakes.

We survived intact, and Big Sis was even inching toward her cheerier self by the time we left.  Until she bonked her head on the car door...

1 comment:

Marisa Reichardt said...

This makes me wish folks would share stories behind their holiday card pictures. My guess is that most of them are like yours. The good news is that you got this very sweet picture of Tootsie! Love that birthmark!