“Get away from me with that camera”.
How many of you have said this? How many times have you said it?
If you’re like me, you’ll have a smartphone that is permanently slow because it has eleventy squillion photographs on it.
And if you’re like me, you’ll have photographs of everyone and everything you love, but very few of yourself. I’d say 75% of my pics are of the girls and The Him. 20% of utter nonsense like food and random selfies, and the last 5%, screenshots of great ideas and funny memes and dresses I will never buy.
Apart from the silly selfies however, (and I say Silly because we usually have our tongues out or are pulling funny faces in them!), there are no photographs of me and my girls.
I realised this when I had to send a photograph of myself with Mini-Me and Princess to a newspaper this week. I spent 20 minutes scrolling through my phone and in the end, had to message The Him to ask him if he had any on HIS phone.
But it got me thinking about Mammies and how so often, we end up invisible. We’re usually behind the camera. And if anyone suggests that we step into a photograph, 9 times out of 10 we’ll have some way of getting out of it:
“Not at all,”
“I don’t need to be in any pictures”
“Get that camera AWAY from me”
“I haven’t even brushed my hair”
“Look at the shape of me”
“Just snap them”
“Get AWAY with the camera”
“I look dreadful”
“Nah I’m grand here thanks!”
You could all add your own to this no doubt…
We all do it. And the result is going to be a million memories for our kids where the only part of Mammy in the pictures is her shadow or her hand holding the wobbly baby up.
But here’s the thing. Our children don’t care about how Mammy looks, or if her hair is brushed, or if she looks knackered. When they are older and looking through the millions of images of their childhoods, all they’ll care about is that we’re IN the pictures. And they won’t see the makeup or the neat hair, they’ll only see the love. They’ll only see the moment. They’ll only see Mammy.
So take that picture.
You’re gorgeous. Your kids don’t care what you look like. That’s all YOU. They think you’re perfect already.
So shake off those insecurities and forget about the “shape of you”. Smile and let yourself be captured in the memories of your smartphones.
Jump into the shot if someone asks you to. Be more than just the shadow or the Invisible Mammy, because someday, these photographs will be so much more important than our shyness or insecurities. They’ll be cherished and loved by our loved ones, more than we can ever imagine.
Read more on The S-Mum’s website https://the-smum.com or join the conversation on Facebook @the.s.mum
Read more on my Thoroughly Modern Mammy column on www.donegalwoman.ie
The S-Mum xx