New Family Storytelling in Times of a Pandemic – 1 Year ON.

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What about family storytelling?

It’s been a year since the COVID-19 pandemic started, and it still continues to be a pressing problem in many parts of the world. While constantly thinking about our physical health, we are also feeling the emotional burden of the crisis and how it takes a toll on our mental wellbeing. Many things have changed, and we lost control of various aspects of our lives. Navigating in the “new normal” is a challenging and tiring task that consumes most of us.

For families with kids, going through life during the pandemic usually means homeschooling, working from home, online graduation or moving up ceremonies, giving up vacations and playdates, drive-by parties, and having less and less interaction from the outside world.

I actually put down my camera for two months because I was uninspired by the whole routine. Some of you may be guilty of this too. Instead of finding the time to do things since we are mostly at home, we lose our drive to continue our passion because nothing made sense. It was hard to find inspiration from all the bad news that surrounds us. And I don’t blame you.

London Family Photographer - Ana Ruivo Photography

But I refuse to drown in that mindset. I took a step back to re-assess what was happening and wanted to still find meaning in all this. I realized that my kids are still growing, and they are observing how I traverse these circumstances. I wanted to still live a purposeful life despite the changes and uncertainties that the virus has brought us.

Here’s the thing: life keeps going. It goes on during entire meal times at the dinner table or while taking your time to have breakfast with your kids, which doesn’t often happen pre-COVID. It goes on while thinking of what activities your kids will have tomorrow, spending time on Pinterest for inspiration, or just giving yourself a break and giving them the iPad for one whole day. It goes on while you’re looking at your kid’s smile and knowing how happy he is while blowing his candle during his intimate birthday celebration, not having to worry about guests. It goes on; no matter how slow we think the days are, life keeps going.

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A touchstone for family storytelling

This moment will be a touchstone for our kids, something they’ll remember when they get older. They’ll be sharing the stories with their kids, and they’ll be talking about it with their peers during reunions. It’ll be a memory of when the world was interrupted, and it doesn’t have to be a sad one. We, as parents, have the power to shape that story.

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We can’t change what is happening in the world, but we can mould how our kids experience this. It is up to us to keep them engaged, available, and optimistic. But more importantly, it is also up to us to capture these moments for our family to look back on.

Focus on what you can control in life – how you spend your day-to-day with your family — document the slow, unhurried moments with your kids, spouse, and even pets. Capture them through the lens of a camera because this is still a stage in your life that you can’t get back. Click away from the challenges, the struggles, and the ups and downs. Do not let the time pass you by. Family storytelling must not fade.

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Enjoy the slow life.

If you want to give a family documentary session a try, or if you have any questions about these types of sessions, please drop me a note – I’d love to continue the conversation.

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    Hello! I'm Ana, a London photographer, in love with light and with the magic of every day. I believe documentary photography transcends time and allows you not only to tell your story but also to relive once again your most cherished memories. In my blog, I share my recent work and some tips and topics I am passionate about.


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