It's a long time since I was this happy to smile for the camera. I think I was two or three in that (a bit grubby and marked) picture - i.e. too young to feel self conscious.
I hate having my picture taken. I'm just not photogenic. I cringe when someone says, 'I'll put those photos you were in at the wedding on Facebook'. No no no.
I'd prefer it when people take candid shots - when I'm unaware there's a camera in the vicinity. Either that or if someone takes me by surprise and photographs me before I get the chance to feel awkward.
Anyway, I read a post on A Cup of Jo a while ago and it got me thinking. Basically, it was about biting the bullet and not avoiding the camera. It was about new mothers who feel they look too fat/tired/unglamorous to be captured on film, and about a project encouraging women to lose their inhibitions and just get their pictures taken. It struck a chord.
I don't want Joe to grow up not knowing what his mum looked like when he was a baby. So now I brave it and agree to pose for photos, some with him and some on my own. I'm not saying I enjoy it one little bit. But I think it's important to be brave and just go with it.
There are parts of my life where there are no photos at all to look back through and I regret that.
These days the beauty of digital is the option to take tons of pictures and edit the bad ones out. And keep the odd few images you don't feel are all that bad. Even those where you look like you have wonky eyes (must be the glasses).