For many people who decide to have a baby, maternity photos are crucial. Getting pregnant is a huge, life-altering decision, but actually being pregnant only lasts nine months, so it’s important to preserve a memory of that time. Which is why, when one mother-to-be recently backed out of her maternity photoshoot, Dad stepped up to the plate.
Per Bored Panda, Chris Urena is a soon-to-be father as well as a professional photographer, and when his wife learned she was pregnant, Chris immediately knew he wanted to do a maternity shoot. But there was a problem: his wife is camera-shy.
“When I mentioned doing a maternity shoot, she said she didn’t really want to do anything too revealing, and she didn’t really want to do it, and I kept asking her,” he told UniLAD.
Without his wife’s involvement, there was only one thing for Chris to do: take the maternity photos himself.
Chris suggested the idea to his photographer friends as a joke, but all of them were into it. They organized a photoshoot and Chris strutted his stuff. (The friends who shot the series are Nilo Hodge, Kalief Robinson, and Agustine Rivera.)
It’s clear from the photos how much fun everyone was having. As a photographer, Chris has shot many maternity photos, so he enjoyed being on the other side of the camera for once. His friends all enjoyed the challenge, too. “[They] made it so much more fun,” he said. “They kept picking up on my ‘sultry eyes’ and most of them couldn’t keep their composure on set, so there were a lot of laughs.”
Chris posted the photos on social media, where they got a big reaction, and then on Reddit, where they went viral. But how did the one person whose opinion matters most react to the photos? At first, Chris’s wife thought it was “nuts,” but soon she was laughing.
But Chris’s “man-ternity” photos aren’t just for fun; they’re also a way to celebrate the end of their struggle to conceive.”I did it for my wife, but I also did it because I’m really excited,” he explained. “Me and my wife have been trying to have a baby for two years, it’s been negative after negative after negative, and then one day I found out she’s pregnant, and I am just elated.”
The people of the Internet had almost entirely positive reactions. One had an idea for Chris’s next career move:
“In the Game of Thrones spinoff where Khal Drogo is a pregnant suburbanite, you should get the call.”
Another was impressed with Chris’s willingness to put himself out there:
“For men, be brave and not be afraid to do something just like this for their wife. To be comfortable and happy for the birth of your child. Whether it’s your first kid or your fifth kid, go out and do it and be yourself, and don’t worry. The Internet will always be the Internet.”
And lots of people applauded the photos for their confidence and body positivity.
“Funny thing for me was, we all get the joke here, but the pictures are flattering and humorous – so we can’t look away. I’m a 52 year old straight man and I looked at each one, including loading the 1 additional image. This kind of self-parody makes people feel good. Normal. Less insecure.
You’re doing a great thing and making a fabulous memory for your self and your unborn kid!”
Nothing really prepares you for being a parent. But if this photoshoot is indicative of how Chris approaches life, he’s got a great head start. Here’s wishing him, his wife, and their baby boy all the best!