Yes, Duh, I Took Maternity Photos

Friday, May 5, 2017

I had always planned to have maternity photos taken. It was one of those things that felt like it absolutely had to be captured on film, no matter the size of my cankles. Besides, it had taken us a while to get here and I wanted to be able to remember how I looked, how I felt, how much we loved each other in these moments of being just the two four of us before we'd become at least three five for the next 18 years. It was non-negotiable.

For months, I ordered and tried on dresses and Raz rolled his eyes. "More options?" he'd ask. Duh, bruh. Never enough options. I wasn't trying to be like Demi or Ciara with just some naked/undie pics, and I wanted to keep the vibe simple, but I still needed to feel pretty, and like myself, and--let's be real here--sexayyy. Well, as sexy as possible with a bowling ball attached to my torso.

And you know what? Even now, 39 weeks in, it still doesn't feel real. I say that all the time. People comment on my belly constantly. And yet I have no concept of what this thing is or how it's going to change us. Maybe I needed more proof. Perhaps the photos would show me this gut I grew was for a bigger purpose, that one day, I'd turn around at my kid's graduation and finally realize I GREW HIM IN MY BODY. Maybe that will never happen. Either way, we have photos.

I knew the only people for the job were our friends, The Sullivans, who took our absolutely epic mini bump photos and who I contacted immediately after my sorority sister's beautiful wedding in Coeur d'Alene last summer.

My original intention was to be mostly solo, but that went away as soon as we arrived. Not only is Raz a much better and more beautiful model than I am, he carries a sense of absolute self-assurance I've only ever seen from my dad. The boy can look right into the lens and own. It. 
I just love him.

One of the things I've most appreciated in getting dolled up with him to take pretty pictures is that I get to see from an outsider's view how we look at each other. I'm pretty proud of those looks we give. I made a commitment to myself a long time ago that I would prioritize my relationships over anything else and I always dreamed of having a partner who was not only my PIC, but who also looked at me the way he does. To see here how I look at him makes me really, really proud of what we're building. We're bringing this kid into a good thing. I'm truly thrilled for that.

Just strollin' with my boys.

I couldn't get away with not showing my belly, so when Laura suggested a couple boudie shots, I complied. I'm glad I did. Here it is up close and personal. You're in there, kid! And you're getting bigger than I want to think about. Also, my belly line is not symmetrical down my belly button and that kinda irritates me, but when I asked my midwives about it, they came back with "Well, are your organs symmetrical?" Touche?

We're growing a family, man, and that is a great and powerful thing. I don't know that I'll ever come to comprehend how great and powerful it is until I'm sitting at the head of the Thanksgiving table and all my grandchildren are fighting over the last scoop of mashed potatoes around me. And even then. Will it sink in? I asked Grandma and she said no.

Here's hoping this next chapter is as beautiful and as full of learning as all that have come before it. That's one thing I can wrap my head around coming absolutely true.

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