I love capturing the perfect family photo. You know, the one where everybody is looking at the camera and smiling. But if we are honest, attaining a photo like this requires a tedious process that usually involves elevated blood pressure, bribery and the inevitable threats.
And all for what?! So we can post it to Facebook as if to say to the world, “Look at us! We have the perfect family and the perfect life!” Well let me go ahead and tell you that our family is not perfect, nor do we have it all together.
To get the photo above, it takes a grueling process- one that makes me more and more aware that I have a long way to go as a parent… heck, as a person. Anytime I need a lesson in patience or grace, we can just go take family photos.
So here is reality… For every great photo you see of us, there are 50 others that are pure crap. I’m sad to say, those other crappy photos show just how far I have to go as a mom.
So I wrote a poem to express how this process to picture perfect goes down for us…every…freaking…time.
To get the perfect picture, I think we would all agree,
That everyone needs to smile by the end of “1-2-3”
But rarely does that happen, on the very first shot,
Because someone’s never ready, this happens quite a lot.
Sometimes you get a good one, and it really blesses your heart.
But you can’t get over the fact, that you’re standing so far apart!
And as you move in close, the smiling can never quit.
Unless your youngest child is about to throw a fit.
When he’s found your hair it’s over, the next few photos will be crap.
And you begin to rethink your idea, that he could skip his afternoon nap.
“Keep smiling” you tell everyone, hoping the chaos will soon cease.
Dad begins to laugh, because mom’s blood pressure has increased.
Finally everyone is positioned, but no one is looking except for mom.
She’s the only one stressing about this, which looking back, seems quite dumb.
But we have to get a good one and so grandma keeps on clicking.
And then the oldest turns around, to express her clock is ticking.
“Someone might get the pumpkin I want!” with attitude she screams,
“First we do photos, then we’ll find the pumpkin of your dreams.”
“But I want to go look now!! Oh mom I just can’t wait.”
“If you turn around & smile, we’ll stop for ice cream cake!”
And when the groans begin, mamma is done being sweet.
“Turn your sassy self around, or you’ll never get another treat!”
With everyone facing forward, finally there’s hope of a great picture.
But dad’s arms are tired, trying to keep brother from kicking sister.
Between the youngest & the oldest, you’ve captured restlessness & sass
And if you weren’t at a church, you’d certainly whip the oldest’s…ugh, bottom.
And just when you think you have had more than you can take,
A sweet moment happens, so a smile you quickly fake.
But the oldest isn’t on board, so the threats again are thrown out.
So she fakes it with the best of them, isn’t that what this is all about?
We need the perfect picture to hang on our perfect wall.
So everyone on social media can think we have it all.
And that’s why I’ve posted this progression, so you can see we’re all the same.
We all have struggles and issues, trying to keep that perfect image is to blame.
I hope that you can relate and I hope this made you smile. If it did, please share it with your friends and family. If you have a funny family photo that shows your imperfections, please post it in the comments below so we can all smile together.
Happy Fall from our imperfect family to yours!