Bereaved Parent Month - In Memory of Talia Joy
With July being Bereaved Parent Month, I wanted to finally finish up this blog that I have been writing for a very dear to my heart friend
You see, I met this friend, Chelsea, through our Photography, through our art & our love for capturing happy moments for other people. Our love for capturing emotion, documenting moments, that we as photographers can freeze in time. Chelsea captured Maternity images of me while I was pregnant with my youngest daughter, & I captured some of her while she was pregnant with Talia Joy & was planning to capture Talia’s birth as well.
I received a message from Chelsea on June 3rd 2019 at around 11pm, “No, Talia is gone”… Chelsea had made a post on Facebook that said “Pray for a miracle”. I stopped everything I was doing & I prayed in that moment. I then picked my phone back up & messaged Chelsea with a simple “Are you okay?”
Her reply hit me so hard in the gut. I wanted to reach through the phone & hug her. I wanted her to know that she was not alone, that I was there for her. That no matter what she needed in that moment or the coming hours, days, months, I would be there for support for her. I offered her my services for her to have keepsake images of Talia once she was born. She told me yes, she wanted to plan for them.
The next morning I was praying still for that miracle, that maybe the Dr made a mistake, that just maybe she would give birth & Talia would be just fine. But, she wasn’t. Chelsea messaged me & said “She is here” around 5:20 that afternoon. I remember parking outside of the hospital & taking a deep breath, one of the deepest breaths I had taken in a long time & tilting my head up to the sky, “Lord, please let there be peace during this hard time, hold this family today, let them feel your arms holding them, as they hold their baby today, before they turn her over to you”.
When I arrived on the L&D floor, the nurses who knew me (I’ve done several Births & Fresh 48 sessions at this hospital) seen me, they all had the “I’m so sorry eyes”. Two of the regular nurses I was used to working with the most hugged me & asked if I was “prepared for this”. I nodded & said yes, this one hits so close to home, as they all do, but this is a personal friend of mine too. They walked me to Chelsea’s room & gave me a big hug.
I walked into the room & immediately felt the peace, the peace I had just prayed for downstairs in that parking spot. I seen a Mother crying while holding her still baby, I saw two Sisters sitting with their Grandparents crying, not fully understanding. I witnessed a Father who was trying so hard to be strong for his wife & family. But do you know what I truly seen? I seen a beautiful family holding onto love, embracing the moments they had at hand with this beautiful baby girl that God had just blessed them with. I seen a bond within family members that was strong, & loving. I witnessed Chelsea telling her girls over & over how beautiful Talia was & that she did not ever have to know anything other than LOVE. I watched this family take turns holding Talia Joy, loving her, swaddling her, hugging her close, holding her little hand, smiling, while tears were falling.
I captured the images that spoke to me as a Mother, the images that I thought I would want to look back on. Images that told a story about Talia Joy & who she is. Talia Joy lived. Talia was born, she was held, she is loved, she graced this earth with her presence. Talia’s name means “Blossoming Joy”. Even though, she is living her life in the streets of Heaven, her moments here on this earth are just as important. I captured this beautiful 6lbs 2 oz, 20.5 inches long little girl just as she was, a gleaming light for this world
Chelsea shared a very meaningful statement with me: “Babies lost in the womb were never touched by fear, they were never cold, never hungry, never alone, & importantly always knew love.” Following that statement was a picture that her Mother in-law took of us together when I was hugging Chelsea bye for the evening.
In these moments, in infant loss of any form, we need to remember that these are moments of heartache, moments of pain, moments of deep love that many didn’t know prior. Pray for them.
While you are praying for these families, Chelsea started a Fundraiser for a very special & dear to her, need. As a mother who has been in the position of being in a hospital where a Cuddle Cot was not available, she wanted to raise funds to put one in the hospital where Talia Joy was born. Please, if you can, donate (every penny counts). If you can’t financial give, please consider sharing this link to help raise funds, but also awareness.
Words from Chelsea: “We have about 80 days left to raise the remaining funds. Please continue to share!
So many families are affected by fetal and infant loss, it is truly a silent epidemic tragedy.
Nothing can truly make this experience anything but tragic, but having the time to bond and take in your
babies details, have photos done, and give family the chance to say goodnight can make a world of difference In the grief process. This device can give families up to 96 more precious hours.”
I am so very thankful to have been asked to capture such an important moment for this dear family.