This picture is really special to me. It was taken on the day that Henry was blessed in our church.
When you look at it closely, you might wonder why I like it, because really, this picture is far from perfect.
The most obvious imperfection is that Henry seems to be making a pretty great cry face. I don’t recall him crying during pictures, but I suppose that all of the snap shots throughout the day eventually caused him to pull his face into a pretty great grimace. Kyler is wearing his glasses, which isn’t his typical look, and I have spit up on the lower half of my dress. We both look pretty tired and I recall that Henry didn’t eat very well the whole day. That was an extra busy Sunday because we were holding a luncheon at our home for family to celebrate the special moment when we would give Henry a name and a blessing. I think it’s safe to say that we were feeling pretty overwhelmed. And, to top it all off, I accidentally punched my sweet father in the face when I was giving him a hug goodbye. How does that even happen?!
Honestly, that list above is only about half of the things that were going wrong that day. When I look at this picture, it reminds me of how completely bonkers that day was. And oddly enough, that’s a huge reason why I love it.
This imperfect picture reminds me that even though things don’t go as planned at times and you feel like you’re falling short, it’s really okay. Everything will be just fine.
And everything was. The important parts of the day still happened. Henry received a beautiful blessing of hope and love from his father, and we were able to spend time with some of our loved ones. We also had a small family meeting where the grandmothers were able to share their feelings about the miracle of families, and then Kyler and I had the chance to bear our testimonies as well. We were able to be still for a moment and feel of Heavenly Father’s love for us and for our little Henry. We were able to feel loved and supported by our family and ward members, and we were able to realize how truly blessed we were.
I love this picture because I can apply it to other situations in my life. As a mom, I typically feel in my element when I am at home. For the most part, I feel confident and secure in my abilities as a mother, and I feel like I am doing a great job. And yet, the tragic truth is that those positive feelings seem to disappear or weaken as soon as I step outside my door and see other human beings and mothers who do things differently than I do. It can be easy to wonder if I am doing things wrong. I think we all occasionally hear (and sometimes even make) side comments about parenting methods that aren’t meant to offend. I try not to let them bother me, but sometimes they do. It can be easy to lose confidence and feel like people are trying to minimize me and my ability to be a good mom because I do things differently than them. Sometimes I find myself feeling like a crazy person who is failing. I'm the mom with the spit up on her dress and the crying the baby.
But then I remember that really, everything is fine. I am doing a good job. Henry is a happy, healthy little boy. I read him stories, I sing songs to him, and we talk to each other. I tell him my struggles and my joys, and he tells me his as well in his precious baby talk and cooing. We play together. He watches me sweep and clean, and I watch him roll all over the floor with his toys. Sometimes he cries because he is tired or hungry, and sometimes I cry too for the same reasons. (Seriously, who has time to eat these days?) Sometimes he just wants to be held, and because my baby boy is getting big and doesn’t want this as much anymore, I scoop him eagerly into my arms and cherish every second that he lays his head on my shoulder and plays with my hair and shirt.
And so, I love this picture and everything it represents. It is dear to my heart to remember that even in the hard times, everything is fine. We are okay. We have a loving Heavenly Father who is watching over us and guiding us while we are trying our best. We are in His hands. We are safe.
Even though this picture is comical at best, I love it. I love it forever, and will continue to revere it as a special, emotional, humbling moment frozen in time. I am grateful for the lesson it has taught me. And even though it’s far from perfect, to me, it’s completely beautiful.