Two Teens And Their Mama: Putting Myself In The Picture

Monday, September 22, 2014

Putting Myself In The Picture


Last month when I was on vacation I posted lots of pictures from previous beach trips. A very nice person left a comment asking why I wasn't in any of the photos.  Sigh.  I've been down this road before, and I thought I had been rehabbed, but you caught me.

I'm the "official" photographer in my family.  I live in a house of men - if I don't do it, the only evidence we will have of our adventures will be a few camera phone pictures of some random thing the boys find funny.

About ten years ago I started scrapbooking.  As my then nine year old son was looking through his baby book he asked, "Mama, where are the pictures of you?"  Later that night I flipped through and realized he was right - in the fifty page story that chronicled his first three years of life, there were exactly seven pictures with me in them. Oops. That's not good.

Ironically, I used to scold my Grandma Mary for the exact same thing.  She refused to be photographed because she wasn't happy with her weight.  "Someday when I'm thinner I'll let you take my picture", she would say.  Even in my family wedding photos - no Grandma Mary.  She died eight years ago, and I don't have much to remember her by.  Not even one picture of the two of us together.

I don't refuse to be photographed - but I definitely hide behind the camera.  I never like how I appear in pictures, so I just snap away, and hope nobody will notice.  But I really don't want to end up like Grandma Mary.

Nine years ago, when my son pointed out that there wasn't much of me in his baby book, I vowed to change that.  I made sure to ask other people to take a picture with me in it.  And for awhile I did pretty good.

But old habits die hard, and after the comment on my blog, I looked through some photos from the past few years. There aren't very many Lana's in them.  Or they look like this gem, taken by my younger son. I mean really - is this how I want to be remembered by my grandchildren someday?



I need to get over myself.  My family loves me, they like how I look, and they want to have pictures of me when I'm gone.  When I look at the photo at the top of this post, my gut reaction is to start criticizing.  I showed it to my older son, and he said, "That was such a fun day.  Your hat looks cute."  And there you have it.

This time I'm putting it in writing.  If you start seeing a bunch of pictures without me in them, remind me.  And don't be nice about it - I can take it!  And to that commenter who asked why I wasn't in the photos, I say thank you.  You reminded me - again - to put myself in the picture.

41 comments:

  1. I fall into the same habit. I'm always the one taking the pictures so I never seem to end up in them! I need to make sure I'm asking someone to take a few family shots once in awhile!

    Jill
    dousedinpink.blogspot.com

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  2. You are not alone, sister! I know this scenario all too well.

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    1. Why is it so hard to get in front of the lens?

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  3. I do this too and struggle to make myself get in the picture! We're our own worst critics. I love your son's comment. That's just the way they see it...more about the memory and love for the person than anything else!

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    1. We are definitely our own worst critics. Every time my husband says I look pretty I spend a few minutes telling him why he's wrong - so crazy!

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  4. Yup - you described me and many others. I posted my first pic of me on my blogpost this past week. It felt weird.

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    1. Good for you for posting a picture! I think women really struggle with this.

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  5. I like your line "I need to get over myself" start snapping more selfies!!!

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    1. Okay - I took one for you today and put it on Instagram. It's a horrible picture - but see how much I've grown today :)

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  6. As my family's official photographer, this is a big problem for me. I hate the way I look in photos but I don't want to be like Grandma Mary either! (no offense to Grandma Mary - I just don't want to be like her in THAT way)

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    1. No offense to Grandma Mary taken (I loved her, but there's LOTS of reasons you don't want to be like her)! You are such a fantastic photographer, it must be hard to hand the camera over sometimes.

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  7. I know exactly what you mean! I had to force myself to include a couple of photos of me in them, in my post today!

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  8. That's funny! I do the same thing. I hate how I look in pictures. And no one else in my family takes them at any family events. So I have a lot of pictures of everyone else but me also. The ability to do selfies has changed that a little bit - but my selfies never come out good!

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    1. I am TERRIBLE at selfies, as evidenced by the one I took today and posted on Instagram. But I did it anyway, because I said I would. This isn't going to be easy.

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  9. I know, I know! 18 million pictures of the puppy, kitty or the new grand baby but …..
    In looking at old pictures that I thought the time I did not care how I looked, geez now not that bad, but it is hard in the moment to not be self critical!

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    1. That's so funny - I do the same thing. Pictures I picked apart five years ago look pretty good now!

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  10. This is a great reminder for us documentarians. Show ourselves!

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    1. I need to be reminded a lot, apparently.

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  11. I hear ya. I need to be in more photos too. I'm working on it.

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    1. Me too - I even posted a selfie on instagram today - and it was horrible!

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  12. I have same problem we've been to every state but I can't prove it because there may be 10 pictures of me. E en my gravatar I put hubby in with me actually in front of me because I am so self conscious. I've been needing to take a head shot picture but when you hzve a head like a ST. Bernard. I can't believe as beautiful as you are that you would be selfconscious!

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    1. Oh Rena - you are beautiful outside AND in! I can't even tell you how many headshot pictures I took before I found one that is okay. Thank you for the sweet compliment - I have always been very self conscious because I'm too tall, have a big nose, blah blah blah. We are always our worst critics!

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  13. Why is it that pretty people like you always think they are not pretty? It's a fact...you're as beautiful on the outside as you are on the inside... Plus you're sooo damn smart too!

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    1. Wow - thank you for the compliment. My insecurities go way, way back - but I'm working on them.

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  14. Awwww, that's a wonderful picture with you and the boys! That's a beautiful memory right there. One the boys will be so glad to have someday.
    On on the "more Lana photos" team. :)

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  15. Why can't men take the initiative to take more pictures! Gah! If you find the secret in getting others to take the pictures more often, please, please let me know. PS, that really is a great photo of you and the boys.

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    1. You're right - my hubby NEVER thinks to take a picture, so I feel like I always have to do it. I guess I just need to ask more.

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  16. That is not a Problem...that one Pictures is beautifull enough <3

    www.theeche.com

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  17. Guilty as well - I am NEVER in the pictures!

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  18. I do the same thing! It never occurs to my husband to take a photo unless I ask him to and they're often blurry or something. Ugh! I want to be better at this too. Thanks for the reminder!!

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    1. So many mama's do this - I need to keep reminding myself too! My hubby was the photographer for our yearbook - so I know he can do it, but he never offers.

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  19. We are our own worse critics aren't we! I never like my photos either, I'm always finding faults.

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    1. Women seem to do this so often - I'm definitely my own worst critic!

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  20. I'm sooo guilty of this! I always had pics of us together when the kids were babies. My teens hate posing for pics, and it's a hassle to get them all together and smiling now, so I'm always the one yelling from behind the camera. Thanks for the great reminder! :)

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    1. Having teenagers does not help matters!

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