Miracle Will

I first met Mary and her family just a few weeks after my sweet Quin was born.  A dear, mutual friend had a few new mothers over to her home and we all quickly became great friends.  Our first months as mothers blossomed into long morning walks together, summer afternoons at the pool, and many weekend dinners enjoying our newfound lives together as parents.

We were so thrilled to learn that Mary was expecting their second child in Fall 2011, but learned quickly afterwards that there were serious complications to her pregnancy.  Weeks and months passed by with uncertainty and eventually their sweet baby was given a diagnosis of Osteogenesis Imperfecta or brittle bone disease.  Mary was told they may only have minutes with their baby after his birth before he would die.  I felt prompted to ask Mary if she would want photographs made of that day.  I knew every mother, including Mary, should have photographs of her precious little one, regardless of the difficulties that may lie ahead.  She agreed and her c-section was set for May 2, 2012.

I can’t describe the day Will was born.  We all walked into the hospital prepared to mourn this baby.  But that day, we did not mourn sweet William.  We watched a true & real miracle.  We watched him live.  Despite all the diagnoses and doctors and odds placed against him, we watched him live.  I thank God every day for the pure and real gift it was to witness Will’s birth and to be with this beautiful family on that incredible and miraculous day.

Fast forward a year later.  Baby Will is one.  One.  I’ve watched him grow over this last year with a very full heart.  Will was eventually given an even more rare diagnosis of Jeune Syndrome and despite the disease, he thrives.  Mary says.. “We don’t know what the future holds for our precious son, but we have placed him firmly in the hands of God.  He’s our little miracle.”

I am so grateful to watch my son play by Will’s side along with our sweet group of friends.  These people, these moments are what make my life full to the brim.  Photographing Will’s birth and first birthday was an indescribable experience.. one I will forever hold close.  This is why I know photography matters.. because we are charged with telling stories of love and courage, even in moments of incredible uncertainty and fear.  I am so happy to be able to share these images, in the hopes that you can feel a small part of this miracle and experience the love that surrounds and is this family.


  • Carrie Geddie said:

    Teary over here... THIS is the stuff that matters, couldn't agree more. What a beautiful family, beautiful images... Love.

  • Tara Parker said:

    JULIA! Thank you for sharing this story! What an amazing miracle and how lucky is this family that they have your beautiful pictures to tell this story! Beautiful!

  • Jessica said:

    What a joy Will is and how beautiful is it of you to document this families story. I mean, I am in tears looking through these images and thinking about how much it must mean for them to have such an amazing friend in you. These images are absolutely priceless.

  • Mary said:

    I've already posted another comment via Facebook above, but I can't pull myself away from this post. You are amazing. I must stop the tears now...

  • Kristin @ Southern Weddings said:

    Julia - This post melted my heart. Thanks for sharing your beautiful work - and for sharing this beautiful family and their powerful story!!! xo - Kristin