Jocelyn is now one years old, but her first year of life was no cakewalk. In fact, her time in utero was not a cakewalk. When Ashley went in to get her 4th ultrasound (she had three other pregnancies) she wasn’t expecting any bad news. Her other pregnancy went perfectly, but her 4th was not as planned. She was told that Jocelyn had only half a brain and skeletal dysplasia. They said she would be lucky to live 20 days. So, Ashley and her husband began praying and praying. She then posted something amazing on facebook.
A few months ago I received a phone call of the worst and hardest kind. I receive difficult phone calls occasionally as a volunteer photographer in Chattanooga, TN for Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep but this one was different. This sweet mommy had received terrible news that her baby would be born with lethal skeletal dysplasia, lungs that wouldn’t support her tiny body, part of her brain seemed to be missing and fluid on her brain and that she likely wouldn’t live more than hours past birth, if that. She put herself out there and asked that I photograph her birth so that any time they were given with their beloved Jocelyn would be documented. That is true love- when you love the little being in your body so much before you have ever even met them! Of course I agreed instantly and suggested that before we enter such a vulnerable and intimate situation they come in for a mini maternity session and meet in person. I pretty much fell in love with this amazing mama and daddy and their three little ones instantly. Their faith in God was unwavering and very obvious. The day approached and I suited up to go into the c section for this moment. Family had flown in for a possible funeral and before going into the operating room, they all prayed together. We went in and as the doctor pulled baby Jocelyn out I was snapping away just trying to prepare myself for what was to come in the next few moments. My first thought was that baby’s head looks so big, round and… normal.-
Then out came her tiny body and amazingly, it also looked quite normal. Let’s just say at this point I was very confused. Mom and dad were praying and holding each other wondering if they would even get to hear her sweet cry, when she started screaming- which doctors had prepared them that this would be very unlikely. That sound was the most beautiful sound I think any of us had ever heard. the NICU team took over, quickly assessing her as I am snapping away. All the while dad and I are standing there uncertain of anything except- she seems okay?!?! The NICU doctor came in and when I heard “Based on all of the reports and scans, I expected to see a very abnormal looking baby, but this baby looks perfectly normal” I wept with tears of joy. I ran over to mom and started showing her the pictures of the baby and saying “I think she’s okay” and mom is crying and we are all crying…. Baby Jocelyn got the all clear and full testing showed the part of her brain that was showing absent was now there, the limbs that were bowed and short were now straight and full , there was no fluid on her brain and her chest cavity which had been deemed too small to support life looked normal from the outside. After a stay in the NICU where even more prayers were answered she is home this weekend in her parents arms. AND she is coming into the studio this week for a session, so stay tuned for our sweet girl’s pictures! The chill bumps I get when I think about the miracles I witnessed still fills my eyes with tears and my heart with faith. God is so good! #joyfuljocelyn
**Please see our page for an important update on Jocelyn and her family.
Will you pray with this family?