How do YOU want to be remembered?

old square photograph of young woman sitting in kitchen chair, dressed in robe, drying her hair using old fashioned hair dryer over her head. woman's face is not visible.

This is my mother.

I don’t have many pictures of my mom in her younger years. Maybe because she was the one with the camera? Because my parents were too busy photographing their kids? That’s not to say I don’t have pictures of myself. I have LOADS of those.

This past weekend my sister and I pored through boxes and boxes of old photos at my mom’s house. There were TWENTY TWO photos in a row of a naked baby laying on a towel.

Yes, it was me. (And yes, I was the first child.)

naked baby after bath, 3 months old, laying on blue towel

But the faceless photo of my mom at home under a hair dryer, it makes me sad. Because my mother is so full of LIFE.

This is the woman who road tripped with me from San Diego to Denver, because she didn’t want me to have to do it alone.

This is the woman who went rock climbing with me in Utah- despite her fear of heights- because I asked her to.

This is the woman who went axe throwing, because she thought it would be super fun.

This is the woman who took on single parenthood with grace, balancing re-entering the workforce and keeping the kids alive, while still remembering to get time for herself playing volleyball weekly with friends.

This is the woman who organized a family trip to Disney World at 65, because she wanted to watch her grandkids experience the magic.

This woman is more than a woman- she is a maternal force of nature.

older woman dressed in blue rappelling off a cliff in utah

Photo taken by our rappelling teacher

Anna Jarvis campaigned to make Mother’s Day a U.S. holiday in 1908, in honor of her own beloved mother, because she believed a mom is “the person who has done more for you than anyone in the world.” I fully support Mother’s Day, because my mom is pretty awesome.

Looking through that big box of old photos in my mom’s closet, though, I got to thinking about what my own legacy to my children will be. They are young and I doubt will remember much about this period of their life- on their own, that is. I take lots of pictures, of course, but it’s not easy to include myself in the frame. Will my children be rooting through digital files looking for evidence of these early quiet years with mom? Looking for a photo that triggers a memory of how it feels to be comforted by me, or have me brush the hair out of their eyes, or have me wrestle them to the floor for raspberry kisses?

I got to thinking: How do I want to be remembered?

mom cradling crying boy on the floor of a middle class home while brother runs laughing through the room

Photograph by Erica Dietz as part of our 2017 Day in the Life Session.

I want my kids to remember me as a ROCK STAR. The woman who somehow managed to balance full time parenthood with full time work-from-home. Who gave energy and spontaneity and support and balance.

mom takes three young kids through target, riding on the cart

Photograph by Mary Beth Miller as part of our 2018 Day in the Life Session

I want my kids to remember I gave them the “squeeziest” hugs and the best tickles. And I was THERE through all the mundane moments, just showing them how to be.

mom and daughter lying in colorful hammock together, cuddling and content

Photograph by my amazing husband Mark Anticole

THESE are the images I wish I had of me with my mother. Because my mom is a nurturer. I am sure that she gently pulled me in for kisses and snuggled away tears and chased me around the house, just as she does now for MY kids.

black and white photo of grandma kissing boy while holding baby, shot close up

Strange that in all those boxes of photos I could only find ONE photo of my mom just being a mom to me, on a day that wasn’t a holiday or special occasion. A moment when she was just MOTHERING, just being there. Which is amazing to me, when you figure motherhood is a full time job.

scanned photo of mom drying her toddler's hair in curlers, 1984

(There’s just something about those hair dryers, huh?)

So my question to you is: How do YOU want to be remembered? Pictures stir up memories. What kinds of memories do you want to leave your children and grandchildren?

Contact me today to chat about how a REAL LIFE Session can create great photo memories for you.

white words on top of faded old image of faceless woman sitting in a chair under a hair dryer. words say How do you want to be remembered?

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