I was honored to be apart of the experience of capturing the moments of a brand new life. Let's face it though, the nine months leading up to these moments was literally something off of Bridesmaids between Hailey Smith and myself. She had experienced this adventure a time before and I can't step foot into a hospital without wanting to pass out... our conversations had been quite comical, but more on that later.
I have been blessed to be apart of a lot of life changing events in my wonderful friend's journey. I assisted on photographing her graduation, had the opportunity to attend her amazing wedding ceremony, and I arrived shortly after the birth of her first child. I started off as a photo assistant and portrait designer, but when I wandered into the incredible world of actually taking photos myself- this woman and her beautiful family have never failed to be right by my side cheering me on. I am learning to grow and create. As my world is changing and thriving, so is Hailey's.
Once Hailey knew she was going to have another miracle, she insisted on capturing the experience- the whole experience.
For nine months, I tried to get out of it. I am not one to... I... Ok, I am really intimidated by childbirth. It scares me and to be completely honest, I'm a little immature about it. I flat out told my friend that I was not interested in doing her session, she could hire Barb or if she wanted I would do some research and make some calls and find her a wonderful photographer who specializes in that sort of thing.
"Oh, no"- she replied. "You. You're the one. And you will be there."
In my head I was thinking, there is no way. I will not be doing that.
Throughout her pregnancy, when Hailey and I would see each other she would make comments about how she couldn't wait for hospital photos and how I better be preparing myself. I literally made up every single excuse in the book. Three weeks before her due date I actually told her I probably wouldn't be able to come because, "I wouldn't have enough time to shower before I got there." Who says that?! I did and it was a horrible effort.
When she popped in to order some of her wonderful maternity photos that we took at her home she was due at any day. At this point I watched my gorgeous friend glowing from head to cute shoes and I knew two things- she has always been there for me throughout my requests and advances, so as a good friend I needed to reciprocate and you don't mess with a woman who is nine months pregnant and due at any day. Needless to say, I got over it and obliged.
Hailey called me while I was on my way, she asked me if I was driving in her direction.
"Yes," I replied. "I can totally turn around if you've changed your mind"- (yea, I know...).
"No way, get here soon because I think I'm about to be ready!"
Ten minutes later Hinley Jae was born. I didn't have to face my fears after all...
The moments I spent in the hospital taking portraits of my amazing friend, her husband and her new baby were absolutely emotional, magical, and unbelievably filled with joy. When their three year old arrived to meet her new best friend, I've never felt such incredible energy among humans.