Every damn time.
All of these years I have believed she was doing it on purpose (she can take really great photos of landscapes and other people) but rather than ask her why, I would silently, sullenly lick my wounds as I cringed over the odd angles she chose to accentuate each bulging thigh, each fat roll, each double chin.
You will have to trust me when I say that I am not hypercritical of these photos simply because of body dysmorphic issues. There is some of that, admittedly (what woman doesn’t), but these are genuinely bad:
Bugging eyes. My mouth caught gaping open in some sort of snarlish way that I did not know was possible. Are my teeth REALLY that crooked? OMG. Please tell me that is not a nose booger!
In a group photo I will be the only one with the red demon eyes. No one else. How does she DO that so consistantly?!?!?? Is there a reverse red eye photo editor?
It struck me today, however, as I was looking at terrible photos of my kids that I really didn’t want to delete because it was THEM, that rather than this being an indication of a well orchestrated systematic attack on my self esteem driven by complicated maternal jealousy, perhaps this is actually a symptom of love. Love blinding to the flaws. Love that blights any photographic skill. Love that negates all of those unpleasant angles. She does not see how bad the pictures are because when she looks at them, she sees me.
Maybe she really does hate me. I don’t know and I don’t really care anymore. I am choosing to believe it is love. AND I am choosing to hit delete on all of those godawful pictures of my kids. No need to give them a complex when I have plenty of beautiful ones to keep!