“Indescribable gratitude. That’s the first feeling I had when I found out I was pregnant and the feeling that stays with me today when I take a moment to look around and see that all that I’ve ever dreamed of has come true. (Between other moments of feeling exhausted and full of worry and guilty and tired and stressed and depleted — because it’s all of these things). My husband and I had been lucky that we hadn’t been trying for very long to get pregnant with our daughter Sage, but it felt like my life had been taking a long time to arrange itself for her (business school, a divorce, a new marriage, a new job, and a big move back home to California…). So when it happened in the period of time where we “weren’t trying but weren’t not trying,” and when my pregnancy continued to be superbly healthy, I just felt so grateful. I had seen so many of my close friends struggle with infertility or challenging pregnancies, and so I knew just how lucky we were.
Once Sage was born, it’s as if a part of me that has always been a mother was finally able to come alive. Perhaps it’s the older sister in me or the fact that I’ve always been the oldest of the children I grew up with, but nothing has ever come more naturally to me than caring for my little one. Granted, I read all the books and tackled this just as I do everything else — with an obsessive passion that took up most of my time on my phone & computer before she was born. But I also pursue this time as fervently as ever — it’s all I want to do. For now, I’m good to not travel as much and I’m okay with not having super nice clothes or handbags. Because I’d much rather absorb myself in her. As I’ve watched her grow, I’ve been so eager to learn about her, to uncover her personality and decipher what she needs. She’s our greatest teacher, and it’s our jobs as her mom and dad to learn from her. The better I am at knowing her, the easier it has come to care for her and understand what each little cry or whine means. I’ve also been so impressed by her ability to learn and adapt — we follow a loose sleep-wake-feed cycle and have been careful about instilling in her the independence that she needs to fall asleep on her own and manage through minor frustrations by herself. I’m amazed at how much she learns from just little tweaks to her schedule or things I say and do…”
“For me, motherhood is about always being the one that loves her the most — and when I realize how basic that is, yet how fundamentally I feel that in my soul for Sage — I realize just how loved I am by my own mother, and how most of us have no idea how much love surrounds us every day. My husband gets annoyed sometimes when I worry about her unnecessarily (like if I call to make sure he hasn’t forgotten her somewhere), and I explain to him that I’m the only one who will. I’m the only one on the planet that loves her so obsessively that I MUST check on her, that I must watch out for every potential hazard. I reign it in when I can, believe me, or else I’d never get through a day. But that’s what motherhood is — this innate, uncontrollable love that drives you to think of every potential outcome and then protect her with all of your might and all of your body, no matter what.
“I wasn’t certain about getting maternity photography done — after all, wasn’t the most precious thing to photograph inside me? But I found myself unable to resist. The experience of becoming a mother started when I got pregnant, as I watched my body transform into something unrecognizable and yet familiar, as I surrendered myself to the new being inside. So I knew I needed to capture the beauty and preciousness I felt as a pregnant mother, the anticipation in our hearts waiting for our daughter. We don’t intend on having too many children, so I wanted a way to remember being pregnant and capture what it looked and felt like.
We chose Caroline Yoon after seeing some photography she did for a mutual friend, and also because we wanted to support someone that went to my same high school! In talking with her, we decided that the cliffs of Palos Verdes would be a great spot. After all, I spent hours hiking while pregnant, and my husband and I can be found at our happiest where the mountains meet the sea. When we got there and the fog was overwhelming the view, it couldn’t have been the more perfect surprise. It felt like such a beautiful visual metaphor for how life on the other side (of having a baby versus being pregnant) remained somewhat obscured to us.” Charlotte, Expectant Mother
“Charlotte and Mark wanted to celebrate their pregnancy with this portrait session. We shot at the beautiful cliffs of Palos Verdes, California and mother nature was really showing off when the fog rolled in to create this serene atmosphere. Charlotte looked so pretty in her off-shoulder dress and floral crown she made. Congratulations to these two on welcoming their beautiful daughter, Sage.” Caroline, Photographer