Last week I had the honor as a Seattle baby photographer to photograph a miracle. That miracle’s name is Gabriel.
Gabriel’s story starts with the story of his parents and his siblings that came before him and didn’t stay. Reading his parents blog about the pregnancy and pregnancy lost, I am filled with sorrow and joy. It is a weird thing to feel pulled emotionally in two directions. On the one hand there has been so much sadness and loss in the journey that led to Gabriel joining their family. But on the other hand there has been strength, love, and courage along with triumphant moments. This little baby is the eight baby but first to be born to his patient parents. I love that they named their lost children such beautiful names. Avery Miracle, Hayden Promise, Hadley Hope, and Riley Patience are the siblings that came before and couldn’t stay. Here are some poignant excerpts from their blog about the experinces with pregnancy that were especially touching to me.
“I wish I could describe all the way God demonstrated his love for us through our friends and family during this process.”
“The moment you were born, I was just overcome with emotion. I sat right down in the rocker after seeing you finally…”
“When You don’t move the mountains I’m needing You to move,
When You don’t part the waters I wish I could walk through,
When You don’t give the answers as I cry out to You,
I will trust, I will trust, I will trust in You!”
“I am not alone,
I am not alone
You will go before me
You will never leave me.”
“On Saturday, I stayed strong until Jessi went in for the emergency surgery, then I walked out to the lawn outside the surgery center and cried. What else could I do but cry, and write?”
“So here we are again. It’s just unbelievable. I can’t believe we’re here at the hospital again, here in the same room doing the same surgery that we just did in December. I just can’t believe that this baby isn’t coming to see us either.”
“The Lord really lavished his love on us during this time. He was there in the waiting, in the stillness, in the decision-making, and in the gut-wrenching tears. I am so grateful for His promise to be with us in all things.”
“Call me old-fashioned, but I refuse to let infertility steal away the joy of surprising my family and friends with the news that we are PREGNANT! “
How Gabriel helped to heal my heart:
Yesterday was a hard day. For me it was a day of years. Feeling like our world is filled with evil and that there are no more safe places. Seeing life snuffed out and chaos reign. I went to bed discouraged and my head pounding from tears that brought no relief. Today I sat down to write Gabriel’s blog post and as part of that I chose to read much of the blog that documented the long journey that brought him here. In a capsulized way I mourned with his family and celebrated as they triumphed at last in bringing a baby into the world. The feelings of peace and happiness that I felt have healed my heart a little bit. When I think about Gabriel and the miracle that he truly is it brings me hope and courage. His names translates to “God is my strength”. How beautiful is that. We must all take strength in the light that is there is our lives. There is always light. Even in the darkest of moments and reading a blog about pregnancy loss has shown that to me very clearly. There are good people. Strong people. Parents that will teach their children to make out world a better and a safer place. There is joy felt to the very soul when in the presence of innocence. Gabriel is innocence. He is hope. He is joy. And he is just plain darn cute to boot.
I am so honored that in some very small way, by being his baby photographer, I have been part of his joyful arrival. What a privilege it is to meet this strong little muffin. He was full of smiles during his portrait session. His mommy had told me that he was trying his hardest to skip the sitting phase and go right on ahead to standing. So we had a props ready so that he could pull up and show off his strong little legs. I was struck by his big beautiful eyes. You could get lost looking into those eyes. Makes me wonder what he is thinking because they are so expressive. So I got a few closeups. I am so excited to share his portraits with his family and loved ones. Here are my personal favorites from his session.