“To describe my mother would be to write about a hurricane in its perfect power. Or the climbing, falling colors of a rainbow.” —Maya Angelou

I can get pretty deep in a hurry when it comes to this woman. Melissa absolutely hates having photos taken of her but from the moment I met her I haven't stopped trying. It's no secret that I married pretty far out of my league and for as much time as I spend bragging on her, it's only in photos that I really get across just how beautiful she is. She's one of those rare people who words just can't describe. I think we were both in shock the first time she got pregnant. We went out and spent a few minutes taking maternity photos together but all of this was so new to us we didn't know how to navigate it very well. Truth be told a lot of that is probably my fault. I'm not good in awkward situations and coaching my gorgeous wife into poses when she isn't exactly at the top of her confidence was something I'm sure made me nervous. This time around has been pretty different for me. I've noticed from the moment she started showing just how beautiful she is pregnant. In fact, though I have no interest in having more that two kids, I'm almost sad to say that I will never see her like this again. She's incredible to be around, so patient with Gavin, so pulled together, and even though she's tired all the time she always looks perfectly pulled together. That's the back story. Long story short - I wanted this shoot to be one I wouldn't forget. 

If you keep up with me very closely you've likely heard me say how much I love it when people don't overthink themselves in photos. There's something beautiful about the way you move, and react, and express yourself when you're not worried about what a photographer "wants". This is exactly where I think most photographers fall short. They're selfish. They have a picture in their head that is so finished that they don't allow the imperfections of real life to make their work better. It's also why love shooting with Melissa so much. Nobody knows her beauty like me. After 7 years together I know her angles. I know her smiles and her looks. I know the way her hair falls and her back arches and I know exactly when to shut up and just let her be beautiful. Don't get me wrong - she still feels awkward. She's never been one to love herself in photos but in the moments when I just quietly let her be, she is almost always perfectly herself. That's the kind of beauty I love. 

I know I can drag on and on sometimes about Melissa. This post isn't supposed to be a love letter. But I'm proud of how beautiful she as a mom and a mom to be. So even though it's not a love letter I do love her. It's more of a thank you note. To publicly say thank you for letting me see you exactly how you are and to share with our friends and our family and all of the amazing people who follow us just about beautiful you are.  Thanks for reading and the next time you have a camera in front of you - tell your photographer to stop coaching and bossing and just let yourself be you. 

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