Her baby was sick with a cough and couldn’t get comfortable. So she did what so many mothers have done before: She stripped them both down and hopped in the shower, letting the warm water run over their bodies and the steam break up the cough. Soon, the baby was comforted and calm.
It could have been a private moment that passed by, immediately swept up and forgotten in a sea of millions of other similar life moments. But it wasn’t. Instead, it went viral.
Kelli Bannister, an Australian photographer, blogger, and mom of three, is the woman featured in the portrait above. Just minutes after taking her daughter, Summer, into the shower, in walked her 5-year-old son — who quickly snapped the stunning portrait on an iPhone 6.
Bannister posted the photo on April 19, and in less than 48 hours, it earned over 28k “likes” and 2.2k shares. To date, nearly 1,000 people have left comments, all touched by how a boy as young as 5 managed to capture such an honest and real moment.
What seems to have resonated with parents the most is just how open Bannister was about the pain of watching your children suffer.
In her post she wrote:
“The part nothing or no-one can prepare you for, the part where you would give every ounce of your entire being to make your poor baby feel ok again. Every cry and every tear makes your heart break just that little bit more and your only wish is that it was you instead.”
Parents from all over the world have since responded, sharing their own stories and praising the mother for just how beautifully she articulated something they all feel, but so rarely put into words.
While Bannister initially had some reservations about posting the photo, she ultimately decided that it was a moment worth sharing; something all moms can relate to. “This is real, raw, and one of the absolute worst parts of motherhood that at some stage, we will all go through,” she wrote.
Now, Bannister says she is “extremely overwhelmed, but at the same time, incredibly humbled” by the response to her photo. In a follow-up post on Facebook April 21, the mom of two also shared just how much she’s enjoyed reading all the “heartwarming” messages fans have left for her.
And you’ll be glad to know that, according to Bannister, little Summer is recovering and feeling much better.