For a couple of weeks, it had been on my mind. I didn’t let it creep in too far though, because I’m someone who takes “sentimental” to the next level. I’m a boo hoo baby all day long and proud of it, happy, sad, moving…you name it, I CRY. So this time, I waited. And, I waited. I waited until around Thursday to let it start hitting me that this past weekend would be my last wedding I shoot pregnant with on of our amazing little girls. Saturday…I lost it.
It’s not a small deal. Shooting weddings pregnant, hustling and bustling for 8-10 hours straight, driving back/heading back to the hotel, sometimes not getting to go to the bathroom for a while or get enough water/food in, it’s a HUGE challenge. It’s possible! But it’s a challenge. In 2011, I was pregnant with Cammy during my first wedding season and it was a big learning experience. I realized that toward the end, yes, I can’t really bend anymore, I need to take it down a notch. I shot very close to the end of that pregnancy and overall? I felt GREAT! No issues or complications except the one minor accident we got into in August around 28 weeks that set me back on editing, as I went into early labor but it was stopped by our amazing doctor.
With Ellie, it was harder. The morning sickness occurred when my weddings began and I was REALLY having a hard time functioning. I ended up taking medicine to help but that feeling was always lingering (and the nausea was horrible with Cammy too but I was able to sleep a lot more then as I worked less during that first trimester)..and nausea, pregnant nausea..please believe me when I say it can be TRULY DEBILITATING. Yes, like you can’t function sometimes at all. I just wanted to sleep, eat ice and sleep some more! But the pregnancy with Ellie is when my business hit another level and started to soar, I worked HARDER, pushed, reached, accomplished, and grew on many technical levels as well. I will never forget those memories of shooting with her that year in 2013.
Now here we have little miss Autumn who’s due Christmas Eve, and seeing how I have two other little girls to take care of…this pregnancy was a DOOZY. Like, five weddings in May back to back and my nausea started the last weekend of April…I…was..terrified. I couldn’t hold down water. I couldn’t eat, I couldn’t do anything. It was scary and thankfully I got some antihistamines from the doctor that help curb the nausea enough to take in some food but it was so hard for me. I STILL managed to push push push and shoot through every wedding just the same as I do at any other one, delivering the same if not MORE images than the average! When I got there, adrenaline really took over and I performed surprisingly great but when I got in my car at the end of the night, I didn’t think I was going to make it home some nights with how hard it hit me right then and there!
Then came a visit for fluids and anti nausea AFTER the first trimester passed and we thought I was past it, right before an August wedding a few days beforehand..and then, PRESCHOOL started and we ALL got SUPER sick. I ended up in the ER overnight because of the flu hitting my pregnant self too hard, it was such a crazy couple of weeks. Needless to say, we have been set back more and more than we could EVER have imagined this year but continued to push through and shoot well!
Now..I kind of want to tell you what’s going on but I don’t. It’s REALLY not pretty. I’ll just say this, it’s a pregnancy symptom I was COMPLETELY unaware of, didn’t even know it existed…but it’s happening to me now and it’s going to basically beat me down until delivery. Every day, it seems worse, but I have to live with it. I think it’s a great thing that the season ended for us right where it did, with SUCH an amazing couple and that we are able to just rock out a couple of shoots now, engage in a couple of conferences I’m SO honored to be a part of and then take it easy waiting to meet little “naughty Autie” as we call her because of her big MEAN kicks hahah! She’s doing it now as I type!
This is hard for me you guys. It’s hard to shoot pregnant but it’s been a PILLAR of my business. I have inspired so many women to take the plunge and run business with pregnant belly/new baby, and I will ALWAYS stand for it and cheer them on. I was told I can’t, and three babies later in five years of business, I DID. I will miss your little movements and kicks during reception dances. I’ll miss you moving during the ceremony making me jump visibly when I’m supposed to be still and quiet. I’ll miss doing the “waddle” (my version of the wobble) and holding you so tight with my non-shooting hand while Tim McGraw “My Little Girl” or “My Girl” plays. I will miss my brides feeling you girls kick, I’ll miss you literally being with me on the wedding days.
We know three is right for us. We know we will be insane if we have another, so we’re not betting on that happening. We also know we need to find ways to be EXCITED about this instead of so sad and emotional, so we’re excited to focus on other things now and adventures we can make happen without the pregnancy aspect in the picture anymore! Staying positive..living in the sunshine, I can do this! I’ll stop crying soon 🙂
Thank you to my three little ladies for being such a big part of these wedding days without having the choice, but making such an amazing business grow from it. I LOVE YOU GIRLS.