Welcome home, Violet | Quakertown, PA
When Melissa opened the front door to her home, I instantly felt a wave of peace wash over me. Between her glowing smile, sunset colored hair, and gorgeous light pouring in through the dining room windows, I was anxious to start photographing. I took notes as she showed me her home of how beautifully the light reflected off the hardwood floors, and how much heart she put into decorating Violet's nursery. A stunning painting of the placenta hangs above the nursery rocking chair, hospital bracelets gently lean against a sonogram photograph, and a stunning adornment of frames hang above the crib (Melissa told me she worked on that project on a winter day when she couldn't leave). As she was giving me a tour of her home, we finally reached her bedroom and when I rounded the corner to step inside my heart began to fill with love. I saw her Husband Nick carefully rocking Violet as he sat against pillow against the bed-frame. Between the way he held Violet, and how his eyes got wide with a smile as Melissa entered the room - I could tell this would be one heart warming session.
Here is a little insight into Melissa + Nick's journey to parenthood:
"We'd been trying to have a baby since 2012, shortly after we got married. I decided to see a fertility specialist since I hadn't gotten my menstrual cycle for several months after stopping birth control. After the initial testing, we went through fertility treatment for the better part of two years, which included more lows than highs as each attempt ended in a negative sign on a pregnancy test. We decided to give it a rest because it was taking a hefty emotional toll. August of 2014 was my last failed attempt at becoming a mother. I thought it just may not be in the cards for us, and we had to be okay with that. Over the course of the following two years, we talked about it here and there but decided we weren't ready to try again. Both of us were kind of discovering who we were - me with antiques and Nick with photography and exploration.
During the fall of 2016, we were on one of our usual evening walks with our dog Abbey and started talking about trying again. This time around - we felt ready. We felt like we had done everything we wanted to do and evolved enough both individually and as a couple. On New Years Eve, right after the ball dropped, we clinked our glasses of sparkling apple cider (tradition) and toasted to "seriously trying to have a baby" (eeek!) . I set up an appointment to see my favorite fertility doctor in February. I had testing done right after Easter, and within a few weeks we had our IVF consult. Everything looked okay on my end, but when Nick's test results came back we realized the reason we weren't getting pregnant all these years was because he has a fertility issue. It was a devastating blow for him leaving him defeated for a couple of days. I told him, "So what? We have a hurdle, and we'll get over it - together". I needed him to know that no matter what, I'm okay with whatever happens and that I didn't think any less of him.
Because of Nick's fertility issue we found out that the only way we will conceive is if we do IVF with ICSI, which is when they take one single sperm and place it inside of my egg. My menstrual cycle arrived at the end of July, thus marking the beginning of our IVF journey. One long month of countless shots, meds, supplements, blood draws, ultrasounds, etc.
Needless to say, it was a long journey to meeting Violet, but she's finally here. I can say without a doubt that I think we were meant to go on this arduous journey. I don't think we would appreciate her as much as we do if it were as simple as just getting pregnant. I also think it happened when it did and the way it did because we weren't truly ready to be parents... until now".
-Violet's Momma, Melissa.
Check out the music link below. The song allows you to connect with the photographs on a more visceral level.
Also, Please enjoy a highlight video from Violet's newborn session below the photo gallery.
Melissa's answer on her favorite thing about being Violet's Mom: "Just knowing that I am hers and she is mine, for the rest of our lives, for better or for worse. Oh, and the fact that she can't fight off my smothering kisses". -Melissa
"My favorite thing about motherhood is probably the bonding that comes with breastfeeding. I thought it would feel so weird and foreign, but it's actually just the opposite". -Melissa
"About once a week Nick and Violet spend quality time together while I go for a drive through the country - windows down, music up, singing at the top of my lungs, taking in the sights, sounds, and smells of beautiful rural Bucks County". -Melissa
"Walking into our bedroom on a beautiful sunny morning, to find Violet and Nick cuddled up, asleep, listening to classical music. I will never forget this moment. I stopped in my tracks and just watched them for at least a few minutes, wondering how I got so lucky. It was such a powerful moment". -Melissa
"I remember bantering with Nick, like we usually do and thinking/saying - "Oh, crap, she probably thinks were arguing...but we're not. This is just how we are with each other." Elizabeth then told me she and her Husband have the same kind of fun-loving relationship. It made me feel more comfortable knowing she understood us, even though she didn't know us that well". -Melissa
"Walking into our home with Violet for the first time was this pivotal moment where our house became a home. Not that our home hadn't felt like home before, but it was as though our home finally felt complete. The moment Nick set her car seat down in our home for the first time, so that Ellie could sniff her - I remember feeling like I was introducing the matriarch to the newest family member". -Melissa
"I love our quiet time at night when Melissa is sleeping. It's one of my favorite things about being her Dad. Just laying, watching TV with Violet and soaking her in while she’s being peaceful". -Nick
"The best thing about Fatherhood is knowing that I will be a huge influence on how Violet turns out as a human being, and getting to watch and guide her through all her phases of life". -Nick