I may have went a *little* overboard on the amount of photos that I included in this client feature… but when you scroll through them, you’ll see why. This was my 3rd time working with Katie and this time, there was plenty of reason to CELEBRATE.
After 9 years of infertility, Katie is expecting her first child. The occasion obviously called for a photo session to document this time in her life. But, we both knew that these photos needed to be everything Katie has been dreaming of.
We shared inspiration photos, Pinterest boards, and creative visions. I wanted to make sure that Katie not only got the maternity photo session of her dreams, but that she also felt seen and celebrated. Her journey- the highs and the lows- deserves to be commemorated and appreciated.
Now she will always have these photos, and these memories, to look back on whenever she faces a new challenge to remind her of her strength, beauty, and worthiness.
Read more about her experience with infertility and her maternity boudoir experience with WMNKND.
Why did you want maternity photos?
With this being my first pregnancy I knew I wanted photos to capture such a monumental moment in my life. Especially because it’s been so many years of uncertainty if this day would actually ever come. I knew getting these photos would serve as a memory of everything I went through to get to this point of life. It would be a forever representative of my dream of having kids coming true.
What vision + dreams did you have for your maternity photos?
I wanted something different, something that would capture my body in a state that it’s never been in before. I knew I wanted something semi-editorial with a little bit of edge.
With the outfit changes I wanted to encompass everything I was feeling being pregnant and the outfits chose did just that. The pink dress symbolized the feminine beauty I felt carrying life inside me. Posing with plants symbolized the growth inside me, but also the growth of my body and my mind.
Going through countless appointments, surgery, multiple medications, and a number of injections I went through so many changes emotionally, mentally, and physically that required strength and growth to handle. I wanted these pictures to capture that.
What was it like seeing your maternity photos after that journey?
Since announcing my pregnancy everything has felt surreal; it’s felt like a dream. It’s been 9 years coming and I can’t put into words what this moment feels like. So receiving my maternity photos, on World IVF Day, of all days was pure joy, happiness, and so much more.
When you’re pregnant there are times where you don’t feel beautiful or even miss your body before pregnancy, and that’s okay, it doesn’t mean you love your child any less. Seeing these photos allowed me to see the true beauty in what my body was doing. It’s creating life and NOTHING is more beautiful than that. I felt empowered as a woman that I put my body through weeks of medication, injections, and two surgeries. I was able to handle all of it in order to create life and carry it inside me.
What did you relationship with your body look like before being pregnant + now?
Before getting pregnant, working out consistently each week was a huge priority to me. Being honest I would feel pretty guilty when I didn’t go to the gym or workout so many times a week. It took me awhile to learn that I needed to workout to be strong, not to lose anything. Before getting pregnant I had finally reached a point where I was working out to become powerful and increase my strength, mentally and physically.
My body now is completely different from something I’d ever experienced. At first I really had a hard time feeling sexy and really owning the change my body was going through. As my son started to grow and my body with it I began to feel a different type of beautiful. The type of beautiful where I felt maternal and that it was truly a beautiful thing what my body is able to do. My relationship with my body is healthier; I listen to it more and give myself grace and make peace with the fact that I’m doing the best I can.
What would you want other women struggling with infertility to know?
That there is hope. The number one thing I experienced in our infertility journey was hopelessness. You’re not alone in your journey and there are so many communities at your disposal full of women experiencing the same thing you are. During this time you feel like no one understands what you’re going through, so communities like this will be so beneficial. Infertility is so many things; it’s gut-wrenching, exhausting, emotional draining, and so many other things. Work through this process at your own pace and be sure to set boundaries to protect your peace.
What would you want other women planning a maternity photo shoot with WMNKND to know?
Mikaela is the absolute perfect person to do your maternity shoot with. She truly has a gift of making women of all shapes and sizes feel comfortable and sexy. Pregnancy is such a HUGE life event and it really puts your body through some very big changes. At times it can be hard to feel like yourself, let alone feel sexy when your body is going through those changes. Working with Mikaela, I felt so empowered as a woman, as well as feeling so strong for what my body is able to do.
It really was such an amazing experience and now I have these beautiful mementos to remind me of this moment in life where my body created another human being; there truly isn’t anything more beautiful than that.
If you’re feeling self-conscious about doing a maternity shoot because you don’t recognize your body or you don’t feel sexy, book the maternity session. You’ll leave feeling so empowered and invigorated. You will thank yourself for capturing such a big event in your life.