Cedar Falls Photography Studio
The year 2020 has stolen many things from families, but I was determined that our newborn photography session would not be one of those things. I’d love to share with you a little about our journey being pregnant and giving birth during the 2020 pandemic…and a little “oops” moment from my husband just minutes before our self-portrait session.
In early February of 2020, I remember preparing to fly to North Carolina to visit my parents. I was looking forward to seeing them and had also planned a portrait photography session for a client while I was there.
Before leaving, I contacted Dr. Hintz at Allen Hospital in Waterloo, IA to ask him if it was safe to fly. I had heard about this coronavirus on the news and was concerned about flying. He reassured me that my chances of getting the coronavirus were less than our airplane getting struck by lightning. Looking back, I’m sure he’d take those words back but we had no idea what was about to break out.
Then March happened. The country quickly shut down. Our girls learned ballet on zoom. We didn’t see family. We didn’t see friends. We didn’t go to church.
I’ll never forget sitting in the Fareway parking lot and thinking to myself, “Is this safe? Is this a good idea for me with asthma and for our unborn baby?” Never in my whole life would I have ever considered being afraid of walking into a grocery store, but here we are in 2020.
I remember being terrified going to OB appointments too, wearing my N95 mask because my wonderful hubby had some leftover from home projects. I have never been so thankful for an N95 because that was during a time where there was a shortage.
May finally came and Caroline was born a week early. I was so grateful not to wear a mask while laboring and cannot imagine what that must be like for other moms. We had the most wonderful nurses (thanks Bailey and Caylee!) and our midwife, Marcia Corson, was phenomenal.
My husband and I had decided that we would not allow family to come see the baby which meant that he and I were swamped with a 4 year old, a two year old, and a newborn ALL. BY. OURSELVES. Talk about overwhelming.
Going from 2 children to 3 during a pandemic was probably the hardest thing I’ve ever done. Not having any help and not being able to send the children to neighbor’s for a play date – was grueling. But God knew that, and He gave us a baby with the most wonderful demeanor possible. Caroline was and is still such a pleasant and happy baby.
Now that you know our back story, what does this have to do with photos? Well, clearly we didn’t hire a photographer but I didn’t want these moments with Caroline to pass without documenting them. I didn’t want her to look back and think, “Why does mommy have photos of sissies but not me?” I wanted these photos to represent beauty and joy during a time where there was a lot of hardship.
Somehow we got the two big girls ready. I somehow managed to style my hair and apply makeup. I wore one of my favorite dresses from Lulu’s from my client wardrobe.
And then it happened.
Joe came out to the living room while I was nursing with shaving clippers in his hand and told me he goofed. GOOFED??? It turns out he was trimming around his ears and accidentally turned the dial all the way down – shaving off a chunk of hair. See?
If taking self portraits couldn’t get any more interesting during a pandemic, add this. But, we managed. That’s why you’ll notice that Joe’s head is turned to the left in all of our photos.
And even though my parents and Joe’s parents didn’t meet Caroline until she was 2 months old, I used that opportunity to take portraits in the studio. I wanted to document that monumental moment too – not because Caroline knew how important it was, but because of the meaning to our parents. Their hearts had waited for two whole months and it culminated in the precious gift of holding their granddaughter for the first time. And for our daughters, they had been waiting 5 months to see their grandparents. You can almost see their hearts breathing a sigh of relief as they hug and embrace for the first time.
All in all, I love these photos and the newborn album I designed and printed for Caroline. I love what they mean. I love the story they tell. And I look forward to telling Caroline and her sisters the story of their life during the great pandemic over and over again.