On photos and the beauty of having a dog whilst pregnant

Yesterday, Ashley wrote about a lady called Aleida Frankin - I'd never heard of her before, but the story touched me, and so I am sharing it here.

Who's Aleida Frankin? Well, in short, Aleida is - was - a lady that liked to scrapbook and blog. She wrote her thoughts down at ricanlaw.typepad.com and on August 6th, 2008, she wrote about the importance of taking photos of her children with herself in them.

"There is a reason why I'm posting these pictures. Pictures that I'm actually in. Not because I think I'm all that and a trip to Hollywood. No. It's because I'm actually tired of being worried about how I look and not taking or having very many photos of me with my children. I have very few pictures of me and my babies when they were babies, and I have myself to blame. Precious opportunities to capture on paper, lost because of my silliness. Well no more I say! One day I won't be here and there will be hardly any pictures of them and their mama. So ladies, hand over the camera and get in those photos! Please. You'll be happier you did."

A month later, on September 12th, 2008, Aleida was killed in a car accident.

I can only guess at the outcome, but I believe for Aleida's family that conviction - allowing herself the grace of being in the photos alongside her children - has come as a tragic blessing.

I didn't even have to look into my folder to know that I don't take (even remotely) enough photos of myself in them: the folder's full of photos of The Kid, and The Dog, and The Man - but not me.

And I've never looked at it like that: photos being there for the sake of children.

I know lots of you are taking weekly photos of your children, and posting them online - I can see where you're coming from - but to me, Aleida' story here resonates much more deeply. It's of the importance of letting myself be in them, in the photos, and I think I'm going to make an effort to remember that.

It's been several months since I've taken a photo of my kid with me in it.

It was such a wonderful feeling, getting attacked by a licking, photo bombing dog. Ugh.

Talking of The Dog: I had one of the grossest mornings today, grossest I've had in a long, long while.

The Dog vomited in the front hallway (why, I still don't know, but I guess it's because I let her run around after having just fed her). Being strong and determined I immediately grabbed her collar, led her into her crate, shut her in it to keep her out of the way and returned to the hallway, intent on clearing the mess, except...

...within about a second of bending down to clear the mess I found myself flying towards the sink, retching and wailing.

It somehow hadn't occurred to me that being generally nauseous already I can't approach her pile of half-digested chicken meat and vegetables without starting retching - but when I did, I was bent over the sink already.

Every time the retching eased I tried stepping away from the sink, but it kept happening over and over again: the retching would ease, I would breathe in, the smell of vomit would hit my nostrils and I would be down in the sink again.

And so I stood there, retching and wailing, thinking how on earth I was going to a) get away from that sink and b) get that mess off the floor, and whilst I was wondering that, I just kept on retching and wailing.

Finally I grabbed a towel that was hanging within a metre of that sink and tied it around my face to block some of the smell. It seemed to work, sort of, and whilst it did, I started grabbing floor mats and throwing them out the door in the rain.

After about two minutes of that I was towel free again, but entirely exhausted and still wailing, and it kept playing and re-playing in my head again, how I was bent over that sink unsure of how I was going to get out of there again.

And it's just... one of those pregnancy moments, I guess. The beautiful times of carrying a child.

I bet they never told you that in antenatal classes.

1 comment:

  1. Try a layer of vicks around your nose; helps block the smell for future incidents.