A few months ago, I was contacted by Sabrina and Steve asking if I was available to shoot the newest addition to their family once he arrived. They knew he was going to require a surgery very soon after birth and they were interested in having a hospital shoot with an experienced NICU photographer. Well, this hospital mom was more than willing!
Bhavin made his appearance earlier than expected. The following is an excerpt written by Sabrina for my in hospital documentary session questionnaire.
Bhavin has Trisomy 21 and had been getting regular ultrasounds every 2 weeks to monitor for any risks. It was discovered he had duodenal atresia that would need to be operated on right after birth. A talented team came together to plan and coordinate this necessary intervention. However, during one of his routine ultrasounds post diagnosis, it was found that the blood flow between him and the placenta was failing and becoming absent as is the case in some Down Syndrome pregnancies. He was born at 34 weeks and 3 days and immediately transferred to the Stollery for his care. He’s been in hospital since and is thriving well.
At the time of our shoot, Bhavin was 13 days old and 10 days post surgery. Mom wrote,
Bhavin’s operation was a success and he is now working up to full feeds. The goal is to get him to eat on his own with as little medical intervention as possible. Something that is a challenge for babies with Down Syndrome.
She was so proud of him because he was expected to be on a ventilator for 2 or 3 days, but ended up coming off it after only one day! It continues to blow my mind how resilient these little warriors are. And mom nailed it when she described him as strong, tolerant, and eager.
I always give my clients the choice of whether they would like me to share their photos and story on my blog. I personally find it to be a very helpful way for me to process some of the medical challenges that our family has, as well as being a wonderful way to share with family and friends who are spread far and wide. Here is how Sabrina responded after I sent her the sneak peek of their session.
After some thought, I think a blog would be great because it would also advocate that all children are special, including those with special needs. I want to share the love we have for our baby Bhavin. Please share our story through your blog.
I love your attitude, Sabrina, and couldn’t agree more!
Thank you for sharing your story Bhavin, Sabrina, and Steve. I look forward to hearing that Bhavin is home cuddling with his three older siblings.
Postscript: I was at the Stollery Children’s Hospital a week after this shoot, in my role as a peer mentor, and I coincidentally popped into Bhavin’s room. He’s out of the NICU and he is looking awesome!