My Life : Welcome William Anthony

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“They are kidding right!!  No way!!  Holy cow yep those are boy parts.  Oh my god it’s a boy!  I have a son, oh my god!  Welcome to the world William Anthony!”

As I lay there on the operating table having gone through one of the most unnerving experiences of my life these were the thoughts running through my head.  They had just asked David and I, “Last chance what do you think it is?!?!”  We looked at each other and both said “It’s a girl, it’s a girl!”, there was no doubt in either of our heads that it was a girl.  Then the OR announced “It’s a boy!”.  I was stunned I really thought they were kidding until they held him up over the curtain and I saw his boy parts!  My next thought was what do I do with a son?  I don’t understand the mother/son relationship, I get the daddy/daughter one but I don’t get mothers and sons.  It’s funny because each week as I photograph a wedding I watch the dances and the daddy/daughter dance is always about letting go from what I see.  The father is accepting that there is another man to take care of his little girl and while he will always be her Daddy he has to let her go now.  Mothers and sons are completely different though, there is no letting go, wives learn to coexist with their new mother in laws.  I joke around all the time that the apron strings between my husband and his momma are made of a material so strong Superman couldn’t break it!  So now after all this joking around I’m going to experience this relationship that I find so different.  I’m excited and terrified all at once!

One last pic of my girls and I before we added a new sibling to the mix!  Notice my incredibly swollen feet that would not fit in anything but flip flops!!

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The night before my scheduled c-section David and I were pretty nervous and excited.  We both knew there wasn’t going to be much sleeping that night.  With a 5am wake up call to verify with the hospital that things were still a go I figured I’d be lucky if I slept at all!  When we arrived at the hospital I had David take one last photo of me for my weekly belly photos before we headed in.  My mom was already waiting in the lobby and my sister wasn’t far behind.  It was really nice to see them before I went back, I was really nervous and scared at this point!

I have to say my c-section experience was not at all what I expected.  It was so much more intense, David uses the word violent, than we imagined!  It didn’t hurt but the forceful tugging and pulling had me jerking around on the table and I was terrified.  All I could think was please don’t let the spinal wear off because I do not want to feel the pain of this!!!!  When David was finally let into the room he said I had a panicked look in my eyes and I told him it was not at all what I expected.  Once they had the baby out everything was fine thank goodness!

Little collage of iphone/Instagram photos including one of my favorite photos of my boys sleeping with Sadie on the couch during a race!  The last one is a photo of Will and I today as I write this post while wearing him :)!

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Waiting to go back for my c-section and yes I did put on makeup and blow dry my hair!  That is the beauty of a scheduled c-section you have time to do those things and aren’t keeled over with labor pains ;).  I’m pretty scared here and glad to have people around to distract me!

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Last photo of our family of two!  I need to teach my sister how to properly focus my camera :).

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Welcome to the world William Anthony!  Born October 2, 2012 at 10:14am.  Weighed in at 8lbs 3oz and 21″ long!  He was a week early too, I can’t imagine how big he would have been in another week!!!  Oh and big thanks to our anesthesiologist for taking my camera and getting these photos for us!  Just for the record the 5dmk3 on Auto with the 50 1.2 lens is pretty damn good, these are straight jpgs!  I chose Auto because I didn’t have time to teach him how to back button focus ;)! 

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I love this photo more than words can say!!!  For starters it’s the first photo of our family of 3 and secondly I look fantastic considering my my body is cut open on the other side of that curtain!   I love how happy David looks here too!

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The following photos were done by the FABULOUS Marta Locklear!  I remember stumbling across her work years ago and fell in love, I thought it was pretty cool that she was local to me at the time.  When I found out I was pregnant there was no doubt in my mind who I wanted to do the photos!  I even contacted her way back in the Spring to make sure I could get on her calendar!  The photos are perfect and just what I wanted!  I started crying at the first sneak peek!

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Check out even more photos on Marta’s blog,!

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  • Michael and Carina PhotographyNovember 7, 2012 - 10:25 am

    as we say in German, alles, alles Gute & Gottes segen!

  • Tori WatsonNovember 7, 2012 - 10:36 am

    soooo sweet, melissa! so, so happy for your newly expanded family! i can’t believe he’s already here – it honestly doesn’t seem like WPPI was that long ago, when you first told us! but he’s absolutely precious & i know you’re going to be such a good mom. 🙂

  • caseyblakephotographyNovember 7, 2012 - 10:45 am

    OMG congrats to you, Melissa. I almost cried looking at your first photos taken by Marta and I don’t even personally KNOW you! lol. But they brought me back to those first precious days after my son was born 3 years ago and I’m now pregnant with our second so we get to do it all over again. I will tell you that you will never see the mother/son dance the same. I almost cry everytime I shoot a wedding – especially when I see that the mother and son have a really close relationship. Nothing tugs at my heartstrings more.
    I also love, love that first photo of the three of you together – I wish I had asked someone in the operating room to do that for us too (I was a c-section too…but unplanned so I looked absolutely TERRIBLE) – you look gorgeous.
    anyway, sorry for the rant but congrats. enjoy yourselves!

  • heatherNovember 7, 2012 - 1:55 pm

    He is so handsome 🙂 Congrats again!

  • MartaNovember 8, 2012 - 12:55 pm

    It was an honor to be the one you chose to capture your new family. And your faith in my vision made it one of my favorites to date.

    The mother and son relationship is one I never thought I would get. I came from a long line of girls, so I didn’t really get boys at all. I birthed a girl first and we are still to this day best friends 14 years later, but I can honestly say that there is a different relationship with the boys (not better…just different). The term “mamas boys” is valid and real and I wouldn’t ever give up the experience to be able to learn them and what they are all about and how much they adore my hugs. Enjoy sweet William…I look forward to watching him grow!

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I'm Melissa! Luxury maternity and lifestyle newborn photographer in Charlottesville, sail boater, lover of Lilly Pulitzer, and obsessed with true crime and interior design. I'm so glad you found me!


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Melissa Arlena is an award winning Richmond and Charlottesville photographer. She recently earned her Master Photographer Certification in the Maternity, Newborn & Family categories from the National Association of Professional Child Photographers. Melissa offers maternity, lifestyle newborn, and family photography in her relaxed, natural, and joyful style.


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