Welcome to Mommy Monday, a spot for me to share with you some of my moments related to motherhood and parenting and the fine blend between family, motherhood and being a Reno photographer. Please note, the information provided in these posts is not to replace the sound and professional advice from your health care provider, child’s pediatrician, certified doula or your own maternal instinct.
It’s Monday. Do you know what happened to your weekend? It’s gone. Poof! Just like that, the weekend has passed by and it’s onto a new week. When people tell you about all these fancy baby gadgets one must have in order to raise a baby nowadays, no one mentions a time machine. Why is that? Why is it that we’re so quick to jump on an item that was recommended to us when in reality, love and time (ahem, patience) is more adequate than any other gizmo on the market?
I have to share an email I received from a friend somewhat recently. I have to admit, I’m usually pretty quick to hit delete on things that smell remotely like a FORWARD, but something about this stopped me and I made the time to read it. I’m glad I did. I hope you take a couple of minutes to read this before I elaborate any further on what it is your Reno photographer is writing (and thinking) in today’s Mommy Monday.
Hi. I just have a quick question- I know we have a busy day ahead of me watching you do things- but what does love mean to you? I’m curious.
Because to me it means rising from bed with a sense of urgency when I need something to drink at midnight, 2AM and finally at 4:45 without making a big deal about it. I can’t see your scowl in the dark but I can hear your dramatic sigh and frankly, it’s a little off putting.
Customer service isn’t just about providing what’s been asked for, it’s about attitude and delivery. As your supervisor I find your “I’d rather be anywhere but here” air of insolence not only damaging to our relationship but a threat to the fragile foundation of trust in others that I’m struggling to develop.
You tell me you love me all the time but maybe you should start saying “I love you when I’m fully rested” because whispering things like, “This is the last time I’m coming in here” directly contradict your daytime sentiments. When a demon touches my face in the dead of night causing me to cry out like a banshee I need you to run, not walk to my side.
Do people who love, lie to each other? If not, where’s the milk you claimed to be bringing five hours ago? Still working on it? I found your slow creep toward the kitchen with a quick pirouette back towards your bedroom once you thought you were out of my field of vision quite theatrical. Bravo. Can you hear my slow clap? Because I’m not doing it.
Speaking of lies, statements such as, “We’re all out of water” make you seem silly. Out of water. Because we’re being rationed all of a sudden. Did the marshmallow man fall into the ocean contaminating it at the source or did you just drink it all? I wish you could see my face right now.
Please let me know when I’ve come close to the maximum number of kisses I’ve been pre-qualified for. Frankly, the last few you gave me felt like charity. The kind of kiss a British national would give the queen if she demanded one: out of obligation and without a touch of genuine affection. Who would have thought that it would only take a few short months after my birth for the passion to be gone. Maybe no kiss is better than one given begrudgingly. The next time I cry out for repeated kisses why not just shout, “WAIT UNTIL MORNING, WENCH” from your bedroom. If I wake up the next day you can just give me one then.
Regarding my napkin-sized blanket, I’ll try to sleep without moving so that it doesn’t fall off. Or maybe I’ll buy growth hormones online so that my baby arms can adjust it without help. Even though I don’t have a credit card and that’s impossible, I’ll figure out a way so that you can sleep more peacefully. I’ll be so quiet at night that it’ll be like you don’t even have a kid. That’s what you want, right?
If a sock comes off I’ll just let my foot freeze and inevitably go dead. No need to put it back on correctly. Just shove it on sole side up and inside out.
I just have one more question: when I called for you specifically, did I stutter because I noticed that you sent daddy in….hmm weird.
Anyway, I just want to let you know that I’ve put that all behind me and am willing to give you a fresh start. That’s just the kind of person I am. A lover.
lots of real actual love,
I know I’m a bit emotional and I wear my emotions on my sleeve, but this “letter” made me tear up when I read it. (And it’s signed “HT” which are my maiden initials…strange). I think motherhood is overly glamorized. Everyone talks about the fancy strollers, the diaper bags that cost more than my camera bag, the matching nursery furniture, the overly priced crib bedding, the cute clothes to wear while pregnant and so on and so forth. Why is it that no one really talks about what is involved with raising a child, especially those first couple of years?
I lovingly update my Facebook status some days with something along the lines of “The Glamorous Life of Mommyhood, part 5788954871” followed by something EPIC my boys did that day. And by epic, I mean epic fail (lovingly of course). I keep telling myself one day, I’ll write a real book on entering the realm of motherhood and what it truly means and what really happens when the Bug-a-Boo stroller is put away, the Petunia Picklebottom bag is tucked in a closet, your newborn is nursing while your 15-month old is eating snacks off the floor and the only scenery you’ve seen for 8-weeks are the walls of your 1300 square foot home. Or maybe it’ll include a short story about enjoying a fabulous day at Lake Tahoe, only to have your 2-year old vomit in the car on the way home then poop twice in the tub later at home, all while his big brother is pinned against one corner of the tub, terrified for his life upon realizing what his little brother just expelled from his body. Oh, the stories I’d share!
I digress, sorry. My point is, motherhood is real and legit. It is not easy, cute or glamorous at all times. Parents can expect the first several years of being parents to be zombie-like from the lack of sleep. Once the baby showers are over, the nursery is perfectly put together and the house is ready for baby’s arrival, it’s “game over” in a sense. Life as you knew it no longer exists, but that is a choice that is made and should be embraced to celebrate the blessing of your new family member. While I do not feel other mommies should divulge every detail of their horror pregnancies upon a new mommy-to-be, I do feel that more emphasis could be placed upon the “Your baby’s home. Now what?” preparation. It’s tough and so challenging. You’ll be so exhausted after the shine wears off and you may actually become a bit angry with your significant other because his boobs don’t produce milk to provide for your child, so you are the one to get up for all those night feedings. And what? Baby doesn’t come programmed to sleep when you sleep? And their sleep patterns change frequently over the first couple years of life?
Our babies cry, coo and babble and that is the only way they know to communicate with us during those early days and months. As exhausting as it may be, if your child is crying, he needs you. You may have no idea why as you exhaust every reason (hunger, wet/soiled diaper, gas, etc.), but he needs you. His strength, confidence and security in knowing and trusting the care in which he’s been placed is based upon you as his mother, parent and caregiver. They will outgrow each stage of life so quickly and time truly does become very fleeting. Yes, I know you’re exhausted, but set aside a day here and there to recharge your batteries, so you can be the best parent you can be. Answer their cries for your comforting kiss/embrace; reposition the blanket their legs have now become tangled in; give them a drink of water; turn their nightlight back on; and if they just want to be held an extra minute or two that night, do it. I don’t believe there’s harm in loving your children and showing them you’re always there for them, regardless. I personally believe this strengthens their own resolve and actually benefits both child and parent in the long run. I’m not an expert though, so take it for what it’s worth.
And what’s a photographer’s blog post without any photos to share? And what’s a photographer’s Mommy Monday post without photos of my own boys to share? I took the entire day off from work yesterday: no shoots, no ordering sessions, no consultations, no deliveries, etc. I packed up my family for a day at Lake Tahoe with our wonderful friends and we let the wind tell us where to go and what to do. The boys enjoyed their first boating and tubing experience (don’t worry, we were pulled very VERY slowly), built many sand castles, “swam” in the gorgeous Lake Tahoe water and made many wonderful memories. These are the moments I want to forever hold in my heart as I witness the joy on their faces with these new experiences. That joy overrides any lack of sleep on any given day. I’ll sleep again one day, but for now, this mommy goes running down the hallway when my boys call out for me. I sleep better knowing they know I’m always going to be right there for them. Lots of real actual love, HT.
Who is Huong Forrest?
Huong Forrest Photography is the passion, vision and dream of one Reno newborn photographer, Huong Forrest. I specialize in newborn photography and have a great passion for capturing Reno's tiniest new residents. I also adore capturing the innocence of babies and children, the love and passion of a newlywed couple and their wedding and I greatly enjoy revealing the beauty, confidence and fierceness of your everyday woman.
When I'm not with my clients, you will find me running around with my two adorable sons, helping people improve their health and wellness with It Works! Global, giving back where I can in several photography forums and blogging about business, photography and motherhood.
Are we connected?
LIKE me on Facebook.
FOLLOW me on Twitter for a fun and quirky look into me and my business.
FOLLOW my idea boards on Pinterest.
FOLLOW my life in photos via Instagram
SHOP my health and wellness products at Try My Wraps
Please send me an email at any time or call me at 775.233.8382 if you would like to discuss an upcoming portrait opportunity.