I see the beauty while watching other mamas with their children, I see and recognize the moments that are so tender, so trying, so tiring, so ordinary, but so wonderful.
These moments, to us, sometimes seem small, but they are the moments that make up the childhood of our children. These are the moments that we will someday try to pull back from our memory to relish again. I want to capture them, to hold on to them so tightly. The best way I know how is to be conscious that they are happening, and to preserve them with photographs.
"Wow Shelley! They are beautiful shots. Just so lovely. I love them and you really captured something. I can't thank you enough. I am tearing up.... I felt so happy seeing them. It's deeply rewarding to see a picture of love." -Clare
"...I don't have the words. What a gift you have given me. Thank you, so truly. This is exactly what I needed right now, a mirror into myself mothering. It's so beautiful, I can't thank you enough, seriously...." -Erin
YOU are mom, mother, mommy, mama. And you are a great mom, no you are a FANTASTIC mom.
YOU love all the little moments with your children, all the tiny little things that do that melts your heart and makes them so them. You can’t believe how quickly each age, each phase is flying by and you so desperately don’t want to forget all the little things about this time now, but have no idea how you will be remember all of these amazing moments.
YOU look at all the pictures you have of your family and you are barely in any of them. You realize that you want to be in the family photographs you and your children will cherish and reminisce with forever.
YOU know that what you are doing is important, but gosh darn it, sometimes it just doesn’t feel like it. Sometimes it feels like no one really values all the small stuff that adds up to your entire day, that no one sees all that you really do, day in and day out.
There are moments with my son where I suddenly find myself wishing so hard to be able to hold on to that exact moment forever. Where I can start to feel a sliver of myself as an older woman with a grown child, so badly wanting to be able to reach back in time and have that moment again, to look down and see my adult sized foot stepping on each step next to my three year old’s squishy little foot, holding his hand, step by step, walking up the stairs, counting together. Where I can feel the happiness from this seemingly small activity flowing from his hand to mine.
As I write this, I feel like there may be nothing more important for me to do with my life than to help people preserve a little of this. It brings tears to my eyes. It makes my heart skip a beat and drop into my stomach a little with excitement. It feels necessary.
That’s what I want to do with you, if it is what you want. I want to come into your home and capture you and your children in all your messy, loving, ordinary, but extraordinary glory. I want to preserve these moments so that you will forever have them to look back on, to maybe make it feel a little less someday like these moments are gone. And these memories are not only to be looked back upon when our children are grown and we are older. I want these photographs to be a reminder now, on the very days that these moments are happening. A reminder that you and your children are beautiful together just as you are, that what you are doing as their mother has so much worth. There is beauty in our everyday. The most beauty, the best kind of beauty. Give me a little of your time, let me into your day, show me a little of your soul, let it all hang loose a little, and I will show you your beauty as I see it, the best I know how.