The Latest Stomach Turner - Senior Photos

September 18, 2012

Posted By: Shaunescy

Photo: Circa 2001, when my son actually liked me and didn't mind his photo taken.

I'm a planner.

I like things done well in advance - in some cases, crazy-advance - it's because I know myself. I know, if I wait to the last-minute for anything, panic takes over, and all is lost.

I began negotiations for the esteemed "Senior Photo Session" months ago. I even did my due-diligence by ASKING "The Senior" what he wanted. His answer was half-mute, "Whatever you want, mom." Did he even hear my question? 

Regardless, I trudged on, scheduling the appointment, and considering colors for shirts based on the season, Montana weather options, etc.

Early last week, I gently reminded "The Senior" regarding the upcoming portrait session. Again, my reminder was met with half an ear and eyes glazed-over. I assumed he heard and this was his form of acknowledgment.

All was going swimmingly (in my mind) until yesterday around 4pm, when "The Senior" arrived home, hell-bent to go hunting.

Me: Oh, no, no. No hunting today. You have senior pictures.

Son: What? Mom, I swear, do I have a say in anything??

Me: {Eyes glazed-over.}

Son: No. I'm not doing it. Why don't you just take my picture. You have a nice camera.

Me: No. I've already scheduled it, besides, I'm a hobbyist, not a professional.

{This back and forth senior photo negotiation went on awhile, then I had to bring in the "big-guns." I phoned dad.}

Dad said to son (via phone from a work-site in eastern Montana) "Do this for your mother. It's important to her."

After hanging up, my son glared at me, "You told him I didn't want to do it!!"

(This was not getting any better, and we were losing time, quickly.)

I grabbed shirts to iron, showing "The Senior" he grunted. I took that as "Yes." I proceeded to get ready, but secretly, I was nervous. In order for photos to turn out well, the subject should be relaxed and in the "right frame of mind." My subject was neither at the moment.

This could all go down in a blaze of glory. I prepared myself for a fight.

Fortunately, the photographer ( Jessie Moore ) is young, and hip and fun - and "The Senior" seemed to slowly warm up to the idea of having his photo taken by a stranger.

He doesn't like his teeth (still covered in braces) and doesn't love his photo taken (what male on Planet Earth does?) and refused any hair-taming products. But all in all, he was a good sport - the Montana near-fall scenes were lovely, of which we changed more than half a dozen times over an untold number of miles, and dare I say, he actually enjoyed it??

All the while, I prayed, "We only need one photo to turn out. Only one." And thankfully, I've seen only one photo so far, and it was so fabulous, it brought tears to my eyes.

Tip for surviving senior photo with sons, expect the worst, and hope for the best. (And bring the damn flannel shirt. You will hate it, yet it's his favorite - and thankfully it's not shown herein.)

Mother of three,  Katie Walters is the author of  An Authentic Life , a member of  and is proudly invited to share weekly within the pages of Montana Parent Magazine's website.

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