It’s been a rough year for all of us. 2020 has brought twists and turns for me and our family almost every few weeks. To say this year has been challenging is an understatement. I am finding myself reminding my own self daily that everyone has their obstacles, their fights and their 2020 dumpster fires, yet it’s been tough to dig myself out of my own hardships. I haven’t been myself lately. Maybe pressures at work and learning to deal with a level a negativity I am just not used to. I have been drowning in my own self pity at times and fighting to gain back my self worth and self acceptance- then yesterday happened. No different than any other Friday, except for the call. The missed call on my locked screen “St Elizabeth’s L&D”. I know what this means and now that it’s happened nearly 200 times the sinking of my heart deep into my stomach never changes. Again, no different than any other one, I send out the dispatch text. It’s the holidays and everyone is busy and even though several have a schedule jammed packed they find a way to make it work, but I have a feeling. Something inside of me saying, this is you, Andrea. So without anymore thought, off I go. Every baby I have photographed has etched a memory in my soul that I will NEVER forget but this was different. This momma was by herself because of the impacts and life circumstances that COVID has created. And let me tell you, she was brave, courageous and a pillar of strength. We shared our experiences, our tears and stories of our babies. I cried. I cried hard. I try to never do that for these moms but I couldn’t hold it in. She loved this angel hard. She was accepting of this horrid fate of her baby and was so strong. I couldn’t stop thinking about the fact she was doing this by herself. How I needed every soul I could get those first few hours after my loss, yet in her moment of heart ache she was asking me about my Olivia. I was in awe of her. And just as she needed me last night, I needed her. God knew I needed her, and I needed to see her strength and her ability to see past pure awfulness and spread love, kindness and love. It was just what my heart needed to know that no matter how crappy of a year, set a circumstances, or work can be at times, there is something far more important and far more uplifting- LOVE and the importance of being surrounded by the ones we love and their support. That is what truly matters in this world. So today, I ask that you first say a prayer for this amazing mother and help to take some of the burdens of life that was just handed to her off her shoulders, but to also lean on the ones you love today and be grateful and appreciative to have them and their love in your life. Wishing all of our families and supporters a comforted holiday season however you may be spending it.