One, how many there were. I am not exaggerating when I say I spent a roll of film A DAY. (Would you like to see Savannah shake a rattle for an hour frame by frame? No?)
Two, that I'm hardly in any of them.
And then I came across this one:
Five years later I guarantee I can tell you what we did that day. I was in sweats and a t-shirt with an unwashed ponytail, a baby girl strapped to my body, at some stage in the process of going to Target. Then I likely headed to the grocery store to stare at the oranges. Then Chris would have come home, I would have mumbled something about peanut butter and handed him the baby as I walked out the front door.
I would've waited until I couldn't see our condo in my rearview mirror before I let go. Huge heaving sobs would have torn through me as I struggled to breathe. Hopelessness and loneliness would have gripped me until it made me physically ache.
And then the guilt would come.
I look at this picture and I see a girl who felt utterly alone. And thinks she is holding an innocent victim who was dealt a horrible mother. I feel so sad for that girl. I want to reach into that photograph and wrap my arms around her and tell her she's doing a wonderful job and that this too shall pass. I want to invite her to lunch and make her laugh and tell her all moms feel the way she does.
I want her to know that five years is going to fly by like that. And that she'll soon be buying that baby a backpack and singing along with her to "Hollaback Girl". And that that baby is not going to be scarred if she lets her cry it out or feeds her formula. That that baby is going to grow into a delightful little person.
Very soon. She's going to feel proud.
Most of all, I want to tell her to ask for help. To reach out without shame. Because her life is pretty damn sweet. She just needs someone to show her.