Rainbow baby photo shoots—both maternity photos and newborn shoots—are becoming more and more common to honor the life that follows a loss. But photographer Nicole DeHoff was able to truly shine brighter than the rest with a recent glitter rainbow maternity session. And this shoot hit close to home.
In a post shared with Love What Matters, DeHoff explains that her friend Samantha was one of the first from their friend group to be expecting a girl. But everyone’s joy turned to panic when Samantha went into labor at 22 weeks. Ultimately, Samantha experienced a stillbirth with her baby girl, Victoria, due to a prolapsed cord.
“We were all in shocked, scared and angry, because how could this be happening, especially to someone you love?” DeHoff says. “When we got the message that Victoria had been born sleeping we were crushed; so hurt for Sam. No one should have to go through losing a child.”
Eventually, Samantha got pregnant again, once again with a girl.
“[At] the beginning of the pregnancy she was detached, paranoid, scared—and while she wanted to be excited that she was having a girl, she didn’t want it to feel like Victoria was being replaced,” DeHoff says. “We began planning her maternity session, because it had to be something special.”
It wasn’t long until inspiration struck.
“One day I was at the craft store when I passed the glitter section, and it hit me,” DeHoff says. “We were going to honor Victoria with the sparkle that she left behind with all of us.”
All it took was a little Vasoline and colored glitter, and voilà:
“When shooting this session, I was filled with so many different emotions,” DeHoff says. “Watching a close friend struggle, you feel some of those emotions as well. I’m a mother of two boys and I’ve had two early miscarriages myself. It makes you wonder why these things happen to good people.”
The whole message that comes with rainbow babies, however, is that good things do happen again. Meet baby Abigail, born in December, who is perfect in every way.