August 28, 2010

Well technically, it was an early birth. Very early. 12 weeks early. The first time I actually met his mama was while she was in the recovery room...about a 1/2 hr after he was born.

When I got the call that this would be "the day" I was so caught off guard. He wasn't supposed to arrive until the end of August. This was the middle of JUNE! But it was an emergency situation and he had to be born...immediately. Driving over to the hospital that day, I was so full of concern and emotion and I just kept wondering how in the world these parents (first-time parents) would be able to deal with what was about to happen? I mean, it's scary enough having your first child, but to get a surprise like this and not knowing how this new little life would manage outside of the womb...I can't even imagine.

I remember sitting in the waiting room...alone (nobody had time to get there), waiting for some sort of news when a man in glasses strode through the door leading to L&D. He was grinning from ear to ear and perhaps still a little white from the shock of it all. His son was here! He was tiny (2lbs 3oz), but he was healthy and it was an absolute a miracle!

I've had only a little bit of experience with preemies, but in that experience, I knew that this new family of three had a long road ahead of them. A road filled with machine beeping and tubes and tests and unknowns and ups and downs and infinite 3 minute hand-washings. While I was supposed to be there to capture the "birth day," I knew that all of those amazing first moments of this particular birth would be delayed over many, many days (67 days in all). And so I asked them if they wanted me to chronicle this very different birth journey. And so we did.

babym_austin_newborn_nicu_birth_photographer.jpgBeverly (who happens to be a very talented photographer) has allowed me to share the birth of Baby Miles with you all in the hopes that it will help other parents who are in or may someday be on a NICU journey and to generate support for the March of Dimes. After watching Miles' birth slideshow, if you are so inspired, perhaps you could donate or volunteer? In fact, to help celebrate Miles' homecoming, I pledge to contribute $1 per comment left on this post (one per person; up to $300) left between now and Sept. 1, 2010 to the March of Dimes.

So here you go. This is Miles' birth story...from the day he was the day he got to come home. Truly something to celebrate:

[Music by Philip Hintze and "Welcome Baby" by my dear friend Michelle Jamail. Interestingly, I used this same compilation for previous births, but it fascinates me how "Welcome Baby" took on an entirely new meaning here.]

Bookmark and Share

April 13, 2010

casa1.jpgSuch an honor yesterday to be part of Texas CASA's "Prevent Child Abuse Rally" in San Antonio yesterday. As much as I loathe that drive from Austin to San Antonio, it was very worth it...especially since the rain decided to hold off on us. And, what a lovely surprise to see my images all over these banners and brochures for their latest volunteer recruitment initiative.

Years ago, I used to work for Texas CASA managing the license plate program. It was all behind-the-scenes work, so I didn't really get the chance to see the kind of dedication and positive change brought about by all of these amazing volunteers who serve as a voice for abused or neglected children caught up in the system. But my word, this young man...

casa2.jpg...this young man had quite the story to tell. He's a CASA kid [he made the important distinction that he's not a 'former CASA kid' because once you're a CASA kid, you're always a CASA kid] and he spoke about the incredible difference his CASA volunteer made in his life. It was amazing to see the two of them together. During his speech, I just set my camera down. Honestly, I couldn't really see behind the tears that kept welling up. I was blown away by his confidence, his sense of humor, his humility, and his genuine appreciation for the kind of change a CASA volunteer can bring about in child's life.

Perhaps you can, too.

Bookmark and Share