Pregnancy is such a special time and while it may feel like it lasts forever while you’re in the middle of it, in reality it is a tiny, important, moment in the story of your family’s life. Unfortunately, I’ve heard so many women say they don’t like or want photos of themselves while pregnant because they don’t feel beautiful. And I get it. Before I was pregnant with my daughter I had awesome, clear skin, never had a breakout problem in my life – yes my friends hated me. But about 6 months pregnant and BAM! Hello adult acne, that didn’t go way until she was almost a year old. So yes, I understand how hard it is to feel like a stranger in your own body, and I know that can make it easy to tell yourself you don’t need special photos. But I can also tell you that you will never regret having them, while you may regret not having them. My daughter ultimately came a little more than 6 weeks early. I only managed to get one semi-nice photo of myself before she was born, and I wish I had more. So, as a photographer and a mother who never got to have my own maternity photo session, here are the 5 reasons I think you should have one yourself.
1. To Share with Your Child.
Did you love looking at your parent’s wedding photos, or any photos from before you born or when you were too small to remember the moment? I personally loved doing this. It seemed so strange to imagine a time in my parents life before me or my brother. Maternity photos weren’t a thing when my mom was pregnant, and there don’t seem to be any candid snapshots from then either. I wish there were though, I would have loved going through them with her as a kid, hearing about what it was like when I was growing inside her. So when you start to dismiss the idea of a maternity session, just imagine a lazy afternoon when that sweet little one cuddles up to you on the couch with a photo book, or stack of prints they found somewhere in their hands ready to hear the story of how they began.
2. To Celebrate Yourself
You are growing an entire person with your body! That is an achievement to celebrate. You are also likely doing this at the same time you continue to live your regular daily life, you are a superwoman. Don’t shy away from an opportunity to make yourself the centre of attention – trust me, soon enough it will be all about the baby. Pick out a dress that makes you feel fabulous, get your hair and make-up done, and rock that shoot!
3. To Celebrate Your Love Together
Don’t forget this is an opportunity to celebrate you and your partner too. Your lives about to change, and if this is your first baby this is one of the last times you will get to capture yourselves as a family of two (or 2 1/2). Be sure your partner gets in the picture with you! And let’s not forget, families come in all shapes and sizes, so whoever you are going on this amazing journey with, get everyone in the picture.
4. Getting to Know Your Photographer Before Newborn Photos
Many photographers who do newborn sessions also offer maternity sessions. Did you have engagement photos with your photographer before your wedding (if you are married)? If so, that was a way for you to get to know your photographer before the big day. You are letting your photographer be a part of some of the most special moments of your life, you want to be sure you feel comfortable with this person. A maternity session can give you peace of mind that you will be comfortable having this person in your home with your new baby.
5. No Regrets
I’ve already said this above, but it’s worth repeating. I can guarantee you will not regret having maternity photos taken but you may regret if you don’t. Too often we women avoid being in front of the camera unless we feel perfect. Trust me though, to your child you will be perfect and they will treasure these photos in the future.