Dear Brand New Mom,
You’ve done it! Your new precious bundle is here! Now it’s time to get to all the newborn photo shoots with baskets or baseball gloves or mini wagons, cute outfits you got before they were born, family portraits, and happy family moments to post on Facebook. But wait….that’s not about to happen, you say? You can barely figure out how to take a shower, let alone go on parade in PUBLIC!
It happens to the best of us. We are completely unprepared for the emotional and physical toll having a newborn takes and have delusions of how it “should” be. We’ve all seen the pictures! Isn’t it normal to be picture perfect at all times? Am I somehow failing because I break into cold sweat just trying to imagine going to a photo shoot with my 2 month old? (The feeding, the diaper, the crying. Or she’ll be tired, or be asleep when I need her awake and smiling…the list goes on…).
Sure, having a gorgeous set of photos of your little one is a treasure. And maybe you will bust your rump getting it done and find a photographer who makes the process easy. But, if you don’t…don’t beat yourself up. If you don’t feel your best and don’t want to have photos posted for all to see, it’s ok. You’re NORMAL. And if you asked any one of those “have it all together all the time” moms who posts magical photos with their baby at the zoo (and they’re wearing actual makeup), I’ll bet you would hear that it was a struggle to get to the zoo in the first place and that their baby spit up on them two seconds after they took the picture.
It’s easy to take one second out of day full of crazy and snap a picture of perfection. It’s harder to deal with the other 86,399 seconds of actually LIVING a day in this new mom life. Don’t be bullied by facades of perfection on Facebook and Instagram. Embrace what it is, and don’t worry about how it looks to everyone else. They’ve all got their own challenges (even if they’re hiding them). What would happen if moms posted REAL pictures publicly? Would we feel better knowing we aren’t alone? The house is a mess, the kids are crying, my hair is hiding beneath a hat, I had chocolate for breakfast, and my to-do list has run off the page. But for one second it was perfect, and I captured it in a .jpg.
A Mom Who’s Been There
About the Author
Jen Winckler is a Newborn PEPS leader in Snohomish County. She is a stay at home mom (aka. Volunteeraholic) to two boys, ages 9 and 7, and is still trying to navigate the constant curve balls that parenting dishes out. She used to dread the minivan driving soccer mom title, but has come to love watching her boys play their hearts out (and did sell the minivan as soon as they could open their own doors without banging the car in the next stall).