We rolled up to our Fall Photoshoot with Kenzie D Photography 10 minutes late, as per usual and I had just spent the last 5 minutes of the drive trying to keep Monty from falling asleep. Looking and sounding like a fool singing, clapping, hoot n' hollerin' and even offering him my soda. With 1 minute left he fell asleep. Out cold.
We were rushing from a hike we went on that morning, Monty had dirt on his face, only a diaper on and was totally exhausted and slap happy. Rosie was for the first time in her life, a total crab face. Perfect.
I chased Monty around the studio, looking like a hot mess, desperately trying to get him dressed in his fall outfit so we could get started. Kenny, our photographer is basically an angel and she snatched him mid run and held him down while I buttoned his shirt. As she started shooting I realized I had forgotten to put on his shoes. Fail. "Oh well", I told myself, "that's just Monty. He is always shoeless."
"Smile Monty! Sit down Monty! Hands down Monty!", she begged, "Don't pick your nose Monty! Monty please smile! Don't pick up the pumpkin please! Don't throw hay Monty. Ok Monty do you want candy?" The begging was never ending but not once did she get irritated. Just kept plugging along.
Next up was grump pants Rosie, who sat and blankly looked at the camera and refused to stand. Like where did my happy-go-lucky & wild baby go? We got one or two smiles but barely that.
Now photos in their costumes. All morning I stressed about their costumes, why?? Why do I put so much stress on my self about the costumes every year?! The kids barely cooperated with Kenny and they just weren't themselves. Just like I think every time, I thought, "there is NO way she got a good shot. It's just not possible with how nuts my kids are!"
As we were finishing up the next family came in and I KID YOU NOT, their little girl had perfectly combed hair, her bow placed precisely, her outfit was ironed and she had such a nice clean face. She sat sweetly on the props and captured her adorable little smile.
I wish I could say that my first thought was a positive one. I immediately got down on myself. Hating on myself for being late, for being a frazzled mess with all of our clothes falling out of our bags and for showing up unprepared. I was frustrated that my babies that wouldn't cooperate and mad at myself for even thinking all of this. I made a few calls and thanks to my tribe they all talked me out of a tantrum.
But this did teach me a few things.
1. I need to chill the crap out. and like do some breathing exersizes or something. I'm working on it, I really am but every little thing I was stressing over was silly. Which leads me to my next realization.
2. I need to learn to love and embrace our craziness: We are wild, the whole clan of us. We are messy, a little untamed, a little cluttered and at times a bit inappropriate. I am realizing that it's ok and good that we aren't that "perfectly appropriate" family and it's ok not to want to be. Sure I might fantasize occasionally about how great it might be to show up on time and fully prepared but that simply isn't one of my natural strengths. That's not to say I can't develop those traits, but the question remains, are those the traits that I want to make a priority right now? No... probably should really work on patience. Scratch that, I definitely should work on patience.
3. Accept my "season" (and my limitations): This is easily the busiest time of my life so far. I run all day and stay up as late as my brain lets me trying to get every thing done. My husband is working full time, with a second job, full time school and an internship (don't ask me how he's doing it. I don't even know how he's so happy, let alone even standing up). We run in an out of our house, to the car, from mtg to family gathering. It's normal for our house to look like a tornado some days. It's normal for us to show up a little late in messy clothes, disheveled hair and dirt on our faces and under our nails because we spent a little too much time playing at the park or cuddling in bed. This is our season of crazy, (not to say life wont get crazier) and right now. It's ok to fall short sometimes and not feel guilt about it. I have expectations but I also have limitations. Accepting my limitations is not giving up or not trying. It is saying here is what I can and can not do. Yes I need a little work in a lot of areas but with the Lords help I will get it all done. And what I don't, doesn't matter. Also accepting my limitations helps me to stop comparing myself to others. It helps me to focus on the talents and traits I do have.
ALL this to say Kenny worked her magic and got some of THE cutest fall photos of my babes. She captured my messy babies, and their fun personalities perfectly. So I stressed and worried for nothing as per usual. (eye roll emoji)