Christina & Mike’s Pregnancy Photos ~ Cape Cod baby photographers

We first met Christina & Mike five years ago, when Mike’s brother, Dan, married his sweetheart, Michelle, at the Langham Hotel in Boston. It was just before we started the blog, so no photos to share. Sorry. Fortunately, we got to see them again a few years later when they came to the Cape as part of our annual family photo session with Dan & Michelle. Click HERE for a peek.

I remember talking with Christina during that session. The subject of babies came up…as it so often does with me. She shared that she & Mike had been trying to have a baby for four years. But so far, it just wasn’t happening for them. My heart ached for them, because like Dan & Michelle, Christina and Mike are wonderful, loving, fun, giving, kind, good people…the sort of people who were meant to have children.

This past April, Christina reached out to us about setting up a photo session for her & Mike and their two sweet pooches…Shelby & Zoey. We were excited about having some one-on-one time with them, and e-mailed back and forth to find a convenient date. We got busy and so did they. A couple of months passed before we heard from them again, but when the call finally came, it was better news than we had expected….

They were pregnant and due in February. Woooooo hooooo!!! Yippeeee! And, happy dances all around!!! Instead of a family session of 4, the session would now include their little love-nugget-in-the-making. Such joy!

We were so excited to see them when we got together for our session a few weeks ago. Hugs were exchanged and Andy & I were so happy to see them both looking so well and happy and excited about their baby.

It’s a boy….Liam! Insert happy sigh…

In planning this post, I asked Christina how she felt about sharing the story of her struggle to conceive. I tend to be an over-sharer, but realize not everyone is the same. Her response left me welled up with happy tears. She & her words are so full of love and hope and inspiration. So, I thought I would just let sweet Christina narrate this post.

Without further ado, say hello to two very happy soon-to-be parents Mike & Christina:

bourne farm, Cape Cod photographers, maternity session

“I am usually pretty private, except with family & close friends, but this journey has really taught me that it’s OK and can even be a blessing to be really open and honest with others,” Christina told us. “In fact, I have had some of the best and most emotional conversations of my life with people (sometimes even strangers) that I would never have thought possible, because I took the time to open up.”

bourne farm, Cape Cod photographers, maternity session

“I have met so many beautiful and brave women going through infertility and it’s absolutely heartbreaking…but then a miracle happens and it just changes everything. I believe in never giving up; there will always be a way. You will always find an answer; you just have to have patience.”

bourne farm, Cape Cod photographers, maternity session

“Michael is in my humble opinion, the most amazing husband in the entire world and I could not imagine my life without him. He is my soul mate, my best friend, my other half. I truly thank God each day that this is the man I get to share life’s journey with.”

bourne farm, Cape Cod photographers, maternity session

“He has held me up and kept me going in the moments where I just wanted to give up. He never once complained or got tired of all the doctor visits (we ended up seeing 5 different doctors over the years). ”

bourne farm, Cape Cod photographers, maternity session

He never left my side for even a minute and has always told me, ‘Of course we are goign to have a baby.’ …’I promise it will happen; I just know it.’…’We are meant to be parents.’ He is always right there in the waiting rooms and in the doctors’ offices with me.”

 

bourne farm, Cape Cod photographers, maternity session

Married for seven and a half years, Christina & Mike met in 1999 at Stonehill College and it was instant love. “I knew within the first week that this was the person I was going to marry,” Christina told us.

bourne farm, Cape Cod photographers, maternity session

“We always talked about having children, even in college. I knew that this was the person I was meant to have children with. I have been dreaming about what our children would look like and who they would become since then.”

bourne farm, Cape Cod photographers, maternity session

Christina & Mike have enjoyed many happy moments. Like their wedding day. They said, “I do!” in June 2005, at the same church where Mike’s parents got married. But, like every good love story, there have also been challenges.

bourne farm, Cape Cod photographers, maternity session

A year into their marriage, they decided they were ready to start making the family they had dreamed about. But, it didn’t happen as they had hoped.

bourne farm, Cape Cod photographers, maternity session

“It was all….timing my cycles, taking temperatures, fertility drugs and IUI’s…and then being told over and over again, ‘We can’t find anything wrong. We don’t know why it’s not happening.'” Then one day….everything changed.

bourne farm, Cape Cod photographers, maternity session

“On just an average day, I was talking with one of the mothers at the school where I work and she asked me about my plans for a family. At first, I was a little hesitant to open up; I wasn’t sure it was appropriate. But, she started to tell me that her father is a doctor at Mass General and she personally knew many of the infertility doctors there and would give me a referral.”

bourne farm, Cape Cod photographers, maternity session

“The conversation was just a simple quick moment that ended up changing our lives forever. I call Laurie my angel because she brought me one step closer to Liam.”

bourne farm, Cape Cod photographers, maternity session

“Mike & I met the doctor she recommended, Dr. Shifren, who is my other angel here on Earth. And, literally, within just a few months, I was pregnant after our first IVF cycle.”  ***Can I get a hallelujah!?!!! Yipppeeee!!!****

bourne farm, Cape Cod photographers, maternity session

“Mike & I have been on a cloud ever since and looking back on our journey, I wouldn’t change a thing. This was our journey. All of the conversations, the doctors and all of the special and incredibly brave women I met through this process have made our journey worth every single minute. The good, the bad and the ugly. All of it!”

bourne farm, Cape Cod photographers, maternity session

“I also wouldn’t change a single moment because it brought us Liam…the light of our lives. ”

bourne farm, Cape Cod photographers, maternity session

“He is so, so, so loved and already so funny all on his own. He lets me know what’s going on in there all of the time. For example, if I eat something too spicy (which I used to love) he immediately lets me know that it was not a good idea. In fact, I call him my little ninja. He’s all kick, kick, punch….spin, kick, kick, punch.”

bourne farm, Cape Cod photographers, maternity session

“We can’t wait to meet this little guy and have so enjoyed dreaming about all of the things we will do together as a family very soon.”

bourne farm, Cape Cod photographers, maternity session

Christina & Mike thank you from the bottom of our hearts for sharing your story with us in such an open & heartfelt way. Thank you too for sharing this exciting time in your family’s life with us and entrusting us to document it for you. We know how important this pregnancy and Liam is to you both (and your families) and the honor of being able to record this happy time in photographs is not lost on us! We could not be happier for you both and for sweet Liam too. That is one very lucky little boy to have found his way into a life so rich with love! With big, big congratulations and hugs sized to match, Christine & Andy xoxo

Falmouth Family Session ~ Cape Cod portrait photographers

Fame, fortune, fancy cars, and big houses…it’s all just stuff. Stuff we may have one day and not have the next. Family, however is forever. It is where we come from. And, the skills and lessons we are taught by our family help define who we are and who we will become.

When everything else around you is falling apart, family is who you count on. And, no matter how messy life can get….and we saw just how messy this weekend as Hurricane Irene stormed up the East Coast….family is that safe place, where love comes easily and acceptance flows freely.

This is not to say that family is always easy, let’s face it…we’ve all got some crazy in our family closets. But, if you’re lucky, your family, and the time you spend with them, is what makes life worth celebrating!

Being wedding photographers, we see and document the start to new families all the time. Two individuals from different families are drawn together by love and often their love combines to create new life….simultaneously a new family is born and two existing families grow as love multiplies in the most beautiful of ways.

As wonderful as it is for us to get to photograph the start to these new families, it is equally as wonderful when our couples come back to us to photograph their growing families. Such was the case when Jenna & Aaron, whose wedding we photographed back in 2004, recently came back to us to photograph them and their deliciously sweet little boys, Brady & Sam.

Jenna & Aaron have held a special place in our hearts for a long time. They were one of our first wedding couples and a special bond was formed. We’d kept in touch over the years through e-mail, but we hadn’t seen them in a very long time. So, we were super excited when they called to schedule a family session.

Although it felt like a lifetime ago since their wedding, seeing them again, it was as if we never missed a beat. We had such a fun afternoon with them & their boys and are super excited to share with you some of our favorite moments from their family time with us…

Brady gets a smooch from his beautiful momma, while he & his little brother show off their super fly shades.

Aaron and his boys explore the water’s edge…Life really is about these seemingly insignificant moments when we take the time to just be together. It truly doesn’t get any better than that!

A family that plays together, stays together! Love all of their expressions in this full-on moment of fun! And, can we talk for a second about the way sweet Brady is cradling his dad’s head in his hand. Seriously?! Be still my heart!

Family is….everything!

Sweet Brady and his absolutely stunning momma! I don’t know what it is about this photo of Jenna on the right, but I just love it. She is one seriously sexy momma!

Summer afternoons are meant for family time. Love the light in this next one, right down to the way it’s reflecting off the swarm of little bugs in the field. It just screams, “Summer!” to me.

Holding hands is such a simple gesture, yet, there is so much love to be found in this gentle way we connect with the people we care about…sigh…..

Beautiful boys…

I just love this next one. It’s something about Sam’s expression as he races his big brother between the grape vines that gets me. It’s like he’s saying, “This race is mineeeee!” Too darned cute!

And the warmth in this next one….both in the light and in Jenna & Aaron’s expressions as they carry their boys through this field…is just heavenly to me!

As it is in this next one….and can we talk about Mr. Mischievous’s expression for a second?

We headed to the beach for the final moments of sunset and I just love the feeling of complete joy and freedom in this next one of Sam & Brady sitting atop a lifeguard chair. It represents everything that is wonderful about childhood to me…

A little marshy exploration…

I remember going to the beach as a kid with my parents and there was something about getting wet that was just irresistible to me and my sisters. My parents would say, “Don’t go past your ankles, I don’t want you wet for the ride home.” And, as hard as we’d try, inevitably we’d get a little wet, and then a little wetter. And, before we, or they, knew it…we were soaked. I can’t help but thinking of those moments when I see this next photo of Sam, who is giddy with excitement over wading in deeper than he knows he probably should. Lucky for him, his gorgeous parents are a lot more understanding than mine were!

Watching the sun set over the horizon….Ahhhhh, a perfect family moment!

Jenna & Aaron, you two are as beautiful and full of love & joy as you were on the day you said, “I do!” Thank you sooooo much for coming back to us and sharing your beautiful family with us! You have been in our thoughts often over the past 7 years and it was so wonderful to meet Brady & Sam and to spend time with you all! We hope these photos serve as wonderful reminders of how very fortunate you are to have so much love & goodness in your lives. Thank you for sharing that with us and for bringing a little love & goodness to our lives! With lots of love & big hugs, Christine & Andy xoxo PS…We’d like to send a special shout out to Dolly for thinking of us at Christmas time! We miss you Dolly! xoxo

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