Tacoma Newborn Photographer ~ Life Raft

As a newborn photograph I get to meet babies of all different sizes and colors.  Lincoln is the smallest baby I have EVER photographed.  Here he is a a fragile 4 lbs 4 ozs.  I felt like I was holding in my hands the most delicate of babies.  I have this burl bowl in my studio and I hardly ever get to use it.  It really is made for super little babies.  It was a perfect fit for this little guy.  He posed himself here.  I laughed to myself thinking that if he ever gets involved with Hollywood his director is in for quite a ride.  As I was standing over him taking his photograph I couldn’t help but think about how he looked like he was afloat on a raft.  Since his session I have thought a lot about the symbolism there.

A few months ago my family watched a National Geographic documentary on Loggerhead turtles.  I was a little surprised to learn about how difficult a baby turtles first few hours are.  Not only do they have to dig out from being buried alive, they then have to waddle through sand and obstacles to get to the water.  Some of those “obstacles” are other animals very keen on having them for dinner.  I always thought that once they made it to the water they were home free.  That was until my recent vacation to one of the beaches where mother turtles come every year to make their nests.  The tide was fatal dangerous.  We couldn’t even wade in the water.  I pictured teeny tiny newborn turtles trying to survive that battering, churning surf.  Then they must swim for miles until they find a kelp raft.  There they stay in the protection of their raft for a long ride through the ocean.  Learning, growing and getting strong.  I think that this story is such a perfect analogy for little Lincoln here.

Lincoln was born having to fight.  His fight started in the womb.  I think it is his AMAZING strength that pulled him through.  That and the love and prayers of his family.  He continued to fight while he stayed for an extended visit in the hospital.  As a baby there are so many things that are working against you.  His very own body was working against him as he fought to learn how to regulate his temperature, to swallow and breath.  His life raft is his mother’s arms.  From the moment he was born he was placed there because it is the safest place.  Don’t you want to just cry for babies that are tossed into the waves of life without that raft.  His mother’s job, like the turtles kelp raft, is to keep him safe, teach him and to give him the opportunity to grow big and strong.  Like the turtles eventually children leave their rafts.  They start with short adventures away with their beloved rafts always near by.  And then one day they swim away.  I am just so inspired by how crucial a raft is to the life of a little Loggerhead.

It makes me remember my purpose.  I am a raft.  Mother’s are a safe haven.  We are there to embrace, protect and teach.  Without a mother what chance does a baby have?  I am thankful for Lincoln.  He has made me re-evaluate my priorities a bit and to think a little bit more deeply about my role in the world.  The most important thing that any of us can ever do in life is to be someone’s life raft!  Our babies would be all alone, left to navigate the cold, hard world if we were not there to “preserve” them.  Go be the best “life raft” you can be!  And if you feel like your raft isn’t what you want it to be, reinvent yourself.  I believe in you and I believe in me!

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Chris Boerner - October 18, 2013 - 3:25 pm

What a WONDERFUL photograph and amazingly beautiful words to support it. Well done!!

Melissa Berg - October 8, 2013 - 8:11 pm

Love the angle of this shot Jennifer! Wonderful job!

Hayley Mesplie - October 6, 2013 - 7:58 pm

As Lincoln’s mother I Applaud you Jennifer for your beautiful words and your beautiful picture. Together they were inspiring and made me think about the new journey of motherhood I embarking on and the awesome responsibility of that role. Cannot wait to see the rest of them!!!!

Starla - October 4, 2013 - 7:37 am

Jennifer you never cease to amaze me. Your images need no words, but your words make your images that much more amazing! Beautiful.

Ira - October 3, 2013 - 8:42 pm

Beautiful shot of my handsome nephew. Awesome piece

Eden - October 2, 2013 - 9:15 pm

What a masterpiece! Love!

djcwilcox - October 2, 2013 - 1:11 pm

Lol, thank you Mathew;-)

djcwilcox - October 2, 2013 - 1:10 pm

It was a pleasure;-)

candy - October 2, 2013 - 10:54 am

my precious grand-son our first – he is a big little guy-such a beautiful and moving picture- I was lucky to watch his mother bring him into this world- thank you Hayley and thank you to this wonderful photographer!

Mathew Thompson - October 2, 2013 - 7:34 am

Give them a story and they will come. The picture is great. Lincoln’s ability to be calm and position himself comfortably is amazing for a new born. But it’s the “words and picture” together that sells the shot. All you business owners just need to follow her lead… give them a story and they will come.

Jessica Williams - October 2, 2013 - 7:12 am

Oh wow I love this one! Favorite I’ve seen so far!!

Crisanta - October 1, 2013 - 1:03 pm

Oh my goodness, he’s TINY!!! I love the perspective of the image. It really emphasizes how preciously small he is!!!

Angela - October 1, 2013 - 12:48 pm

Awww, what a tiny little guy! I love how simple this shot is, and how it shows off his tininess!

Becky Durant - October 1, 2013 - 12:48 pm

Beautifully written, Jennifer. What an adorable little guy!

Cherilyn Haines - October 1, 2013 - 12:30 pm

BEAUTIFUL picture, Jennifer! You have quite a way with words. 🙂

Tiffany Randerson - October 1, 2013 - 12:24 pm

Very sweet and moving! 🙂

Maxine Evans - October 1, 2013 - 12:23 pm

So precious… you should be a writer!

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