On September 11, 2007, our beautiful baby girl, London Cloe, was born. London was diagnosed with a severe congenital heart defect called Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome (HLHS). After nine months in my womb & two days in our arms, London entered heaven during open-heart surgery.
London left behind a mommy and daddy who ache to hold her close and a big brother who can only imagine what his sister would be like. Now, she even has a little brother who – I’m sure – she would be bossing around if she were here! :) Although our pain is great, we have been blessed beyond measure through the life and death of our daughter.
Before London, I always had an appreciation for pictures. However, when I had to say good-bye to my little girl for a lifetime, the pictures we had of her became my most treasured possession. They are absolutely priceless to me because they capture her two days with us...two days I will never get back. And you know what? They're not even "good" pictures! I wasn't a photographer then. I didn't have a fancy camera, and I didn't know about lighting or composition. But all of that didn't matter. What I do have is the pictures of her precious little face. I have pictures of her being snuggled in her mommy & daddy's arms, and I have a picture of her wearing the same dress that I wore home from the hospital 37 years ago. Those pictures allow me to experience those two days with her all over again. When I look through them and hold them, my memories come flooding back, and I truly can feel her, smell her, and hear her again. Pictures are so very powerful.
After London died, I had a new appreciation for life. I recognized quickly that the small things were really the big things. I had an intense desire to capture life for my family - the good, the bad, the joy, the pain...all of it. I didn't want to miss a moment. Eventually, I got a fancy camera and started to learn more and more about photography. I started to find that when I was behind the camera, my pain lessened and my joy increased. I craved it...and I still do. As time passed, I started taking pictures for clients, and I've never looked back.
Sure, I dream of photographing London running through a field of wildflowers at sunset. I dream that she would be twirling and laughing as her long blonde hair flipped in the air! I dream of seeing her nestled between her brothers on the couch as they watch a movie and eat popcorn. I dream of walking into her messy pink room while she plays with dolls and Barbies. I dream of watching her make mud pies in the back yard. Heck, I'd even love to hear her arguing with her brothers! My point is that I dream of seeing her LIVING!!!
And that is what drives me...that is my WHY!
I want to see people LIVING!!
I never get tired of celebrating life through my lens. It is an opportunity that I do not take lightly. It is my hope that clients would be able to look back on their images for a lifetime and truly "go there" again. No matter what the occasion, no matter how big or how small, it's all worth being remembered!
I am so thankful for this opportunity to honor London and share her story! It truly means the world to me!