You may remember LaRae from a post in January when we went down and photographed her healing from a terrible car accident that left her unable to walk for a while. Lucy and myself went down and did a custom beauty session to document and encourage her to keep pushing forward and getting better. We didn't know then that she was pregnant, but i made a joke about it that morning after she got sick from coffee and vitamins. She said no no no of course, and I said "okaay!" The day went beautifully and the results were stunning. Now, almost 9 months later we headed back down to Miami to photograph her again, because our beautiful friend is pregnant with her first, a little girl named Emerson is due in a short while and mama to be, is experiencing the joy and anticipation, but she too, is going through the anxiety and changes every woman goes through that has a little one(s) growing inside. SO here is what I have to say to her and many other mama to bes out there:
Dear Mama to Be
What will she REALLY look like? is everything going to be okay? what if...*insert any possible worrisome question here* and most importantly, and most frequently wondered as a parent to be...Will I be a good mom (or dad)? The answer my dear is quite simple. Yes. You have a heart of gold, smarts and creative genius that will ensure a well rounded little one, beauty that no matter if she comes out with daddy's nose, will still make her absolutely perfect.
We all 'mess up' as parents, and will find ourselves in a puddle of our own tears some days because the "what ifs" won that day, or because she got her first set of shots-i cried my eyes out the first couple of times too-but when you hold your baby in your arms, and look into those beautiful blue (we all know she will have blue) eyes and see your own reflection within them, those tears won't be of sadness or because you made a mistake while pureeing her food, or not matching her outfit or whatever made you tear up that day. They will be tears of love, joy and pride. She will not care that you smell because you forgot to take a shower in 3 days due to the fact that all you have done is stare at her in awe since bringing her home. She will not care that the baby weight didn't just disappear over night, or that her baby blanket had dog hair on it. She will care that you are there with her, being with her in the moment and loving her.
At the end of the day, my dear, that is all that matters, the amount of love you can show and give to her, the amount of tears of hers you wipe away and all the monsters under the bed you will scare away. You will be her hero, her savior, her chef and fashion consultant. You will be her photographer (of course) and her problem solver. You will be there to push her through what needs to be done and hold her back from things she isn't ready for. You will be there with clenched jaw to watch her make mistakes, and there to pick her up when she falls. You will be everything to her, and though she won't always know this, in her heart she will KNOW it, and at some point thank you. You are her mother, and everything will be okay.
Love you LaRae, and your little one too <3
Here are a few from our session, you will find the rest in your beautiful galleries here- oh and some from the baby shower too!
For those of you interested in followig LaRae on her journey, she is also a photographer and her self portrait blog entries with many beautiful words of wisdom and real/raw emotion can be found at Shades of Rae Seriously, you will just LOVE her series. check it out!