Since life isn’t playing by the rulesI expected, I’m making up new rules.
I love seeing family photos on Facebook. I love seeing all the cute, coordinating outfits. I love seeing how the photographer catches those hilarious and precious moments. I have looked forward to having the same photos taken with my family.
Now, Brad does not have the same warm fuzzy feelings that I have about photos. I was lucky to get engagement photos taken. I’m pretty sure he swore our wedding photos would be the last. Party pooper.
The rules I’ve noticed are parents and children get to have fun mini-sessions with photographers this time of year. The rules I’ve noticed are couples don’t do that. The rules I’ve noticed are you must have kids to have fun pictures taken.
Screw those rules.
A few months ago a photographer I follow on Instagram posted a picture from mini-session that she did with an aunt and her niece. I immediately noticed that for her the rules changed, which urged me to change my rules too.
I didn’t share my hope quite yet. I sat on it awhile – would it be weird to have a photo shoot just for my nieces and me? I eventually shared the idea with Brad. As long as he didn’t have to participate he fully supported the idea! 🙂
A few weeks before I last visited my family in Tennessee I asked my brother (Andrew, the father of the aforementioned nieces – I have to clarify that since my older brother lives there too!) if he knew of any photographers in the area who might be interested in doing this for me. He did some searching and found one for me and set up the time.
My sister-in-law, despite all the sickness going around that weekend, wasn’t deterred. She pulled together outfits, found shoes, avoided meltdowns about the shoes, brushed hair and got the girls ready.
My brother (Andrew) set up some hay bales and scouted out some good spots for pictures, as well as other general child wrangling.
My brother (Aaron) perked Rosemary back up when she got offended that I sang the second verse of “You are My Sunshine.” He also got some behind the scenes pictures that were almost as cute as the professional ones.
They did this for me. They recognized that I was changing the rules and they followed along. They never questioned my request. They never said it was silly or frivolous. They never complained. They just followed my lead and helped me discover a new way – one in which I get to make the rules.
These girls will never be my children. They won’t fill the hole in our lives completely, but they do fill it some. When the photographer posted a sneak peek of the pictures, she included this quote that I hadn’t seen before:
“Only an aunt gives hugs like a mother, keeps secrets like a sister, and shares love like a friend.”
Being an aunt is one of the greatest gifts I’ve been given. I’m not a mother, but this is the next best thing.
New rules are possible for all of us. New rules are my life saver.
And now… the pictures! Enjoy!