pictures of hope and perfect sweetness…

the story of shelby is beautiful…it began in montana where shelby’s parents were living before shelby was born.  shelby’s mom had experienced a tough pregnancy up to this point and at 22 weeks, with the guidance of her doctor, she was advised that she needed to be closer to a hospital that could handle a premature baby.  she traveled to sioux falls, south dakota where her mom and dad were residing.  shelby decided to come into the world on april 13th. she was 23 weeks and only one pound.  on june 1st, shelby’s doctors decided shelby needed to be transported to minneapolis to have heart surgery. it is here in minnesota where little shelby will stay for awhile.  her daddy has since found a job here so their family could all be together.  she has been a very strong little angel over the last 3 months and is now 37 weeks. taking photos for this little sweetness was the most rewarding session i have had in my photography career.  shelby has already endured so much in her little life.  and, her mom and dad…are an inspiration to everyone who knows them.  the strength it must take…and, the sacrifices they have made.  God must have known they could endure it all because they are doing the most wonderful job. it was a joy for me to meet shelby’s mommy…her family’s story has touched me forever.  i have been keeping up on shelby’s journey and this particular journal excerpt by shelby’s mommy moved me so much…here is a little bit of it.

i am just sitting next to my baby while she is sleeping…i love to just watch her and tell her how much we love her and that mommy is here and will do whatever it takes to make her feel better.  when i have her in my arms i finally feel at peace.  it gets to be a time when we both get to heal together… by suzanne ullom

as parents, we can feel the love in this reading, but it takes on a whole new meaning.  as i am typing, tears were going pitter patter on my keyboard.  and, as you see the photos below you will be moved by emotion as you see this perfect little baby girl who is growing stronger and stronger by the day.

dear God, may you continue to watch over and protect sweet baby shelby…amen.

i also had to share the most wonderful story of katy the angel…you will see her below.  angel katy is 45-50 years old…literally.  she originally belonged to michael.  michael was born with downs syndrome.  he had many heart surgeries and at the age of 30 passed away. before he died he passed the little angel doll to his mom’s older sister.  michael said it was his time to meet his real angel so he wanted katy to watch over other people here on earth.  katy has been over the US, europe and even iraq with a soldier. her keeper is now alec who was born with a heart defect.  alec is now 13 years old and has had several heart surgeries.  he heard about shelby from his grandma and wanted angel katy to visit shelby.  and, so it is here next to baby shelby that katy the angel sits.  so incredibly heart warming…

Pictures of Hope Foundation, a national charitable organization, benefiting families in the neonatal intensive care unit {NICU}.  The pictures of hope foundation {POH} is comprised of professional photographers from all over the united states, that provides an opportunity for professional photographers to give back to their community.  Members of Pictures of Hope, offer complimentary, documentary-style photography services to families with a child in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit.

Time spent in the NICU is often an unexpected journey for families, a journey full of overwhelming emotions…sadness, confusion, hope, celebration and unfortunately, at times grief.  Throughout this roller coaster of emotions, many parents do not consider the importance of documenting these moments in their lives nor do they think about how much they will truly cherish these images years down the road.  Pictures of Hope provides you with invaluable photographs of your sweet one that you will cherish forever.

At the request of the parents, a photographer will come to your NICU room and photograph your baby using the available light in your room.  Pictures of Hope is a charitable organization, there are no fees for the services provided by our participating members.

For more information,  visit www.picturesof or feel free to contact me directly!

Posted by Eydie Nelson

I adore the families I am fortunate enough to work with and am grateful they allow me to capture a little piece of their lives. Your children not only inspire me behind my lens, but fill me with happiness.

Reader interactions

6 Replies to “pictures of hope and perfect sweetness…”

  1. Eydie-thank you for sharing the story of beautiful and courageous, Baby Shelby! What a true blessing she is!

  2. I read this story and felt that I wanted to let you know that The Bergstrom family in Carlisle, Iowa is thinking about you and praying for Shelby. My daughter was born premature and was 9 weeks early (a 31 weeker)…I understand the struggles that you go through with the NICU and the ups and downs.

    In the NICU next to us was a little girl Isabell who was also born at 23 weeks. Although 1 lb we watched daily her journey…One year later at a NICU reunion Isabell came. She was healthy, happy, and looked amazing in her stroller eating an ice cream bar. You would have never known she was a 23 weeker.

    The journey is hard and seems never ending. These babies are gifts and teach us lessons. God has a plan for us all and give us what we can handle although I did question that at times. Now I understand the lessons and appreciate the journey. Good luck with your journey and we will be praying for your family.

    The Bergstroms

  3. What an incredible story and amazing little girl! Thank you for sharing, and for using your gift to help someone else!

  4. I have been following Shelby’s story as well. I am very fortunate to know her Grandma Joanie. It is nothing shy of a miracle at how Shelby has grown and flourished. Our loving God and Father is in control and has sent His angels to watch over her and her family. I am truly convinced that God has something special planned for Shelby and her family. Shelby’s mommy and daddy are two special people. They have been through so much, but it has made them stronger. God knew very well who Shelby’s parents should be and He found the two best people ever. Thank you so much for sharing your story and the beautiful pictures of this precious child of God. It brings tears to my eyes, but tears of joy to see how far Shelby has come. Thank you again!

  5. Eydie…such an incredible gift! Typing through a few tears right now, but my heart is definitely smiling.

  6. […] can read more about this incredible baby girl and see more photographs from this session on Eydie’s […]

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