I’ve realized that not everyone has quite the same reaction to a newborn baby as I do. Personally, I get so excited just thinking about them – I picture my insides as the emoji salsa dancing lady or this. I just love them! It’s a new little person joining the world. Newborns are so little yet they carry with them such great potential. There’s so much life ahead of them it’s as if the excitement of adventures to come is palpable in their presence. It makes me think of this quote by Diana Gabaldon in her book Dragonfly in Amber:
Babies are soft. Anyone looking at them can see the tender, fragile skin and know it for the rose-leaf softness that invites a finger’s touch. But when you live with them and love them, you feel the softness going inward, the round-cheeked flesh wobbly as custard, the boneless splay of the tiny hands. Their joints are melted rubber, and even when you kiss them hard, in the passion of loving their existence, your lips sink down and seem never to find bone. Holding them against you, they melt and mold, as though they might at any moment flow back into your body.
But from the very start, there is that small streak of steel within each child. That thing that says “I am,” and forms the core of personality.
Gah! This just always hits me when I read it. Babies, especially newborn babies, ARE soft. Their skin is fragile. Their bones not totally set. I shoot to document the tenderness of a newborn in my sessions. But more than that, from conception, that baby is a person with a unique personality. While newborns aren’t known for their witty humor or bold personalities, it’s there, hiding beneath their sleepiness and crying. And when that baby becomes a teenager with personality in abundance, I want mom and dad to be able to look back at their child’s newborn pictures and remember the beginning. How that personality was there all along just waiting to develop (and that the teens years are just a phase like any other – this too shall pass 😉 ). While a newborn’s dependence on mom makes them still feel so much a part of her, they are their own new person. A brand new person! I consider it an honor to be able to photograph newborns and be one of the first people this new little person gets to meet!