“As parents of three amazing girls we couldn’t wait to meet our new little one that would be joining our family in just a couple of months. Being 8 months pregnant had me up early every morning and this was always time that I loved, just feeling our baby’s kicks while I read my book and waited for our house to awake.
Until the morning of June 8th when I woke up and after a little while laying in bed noticed I wasn’t feeling any movements from the baby. After a call to the doctor, we went to the hospital to make sure everything was okay. Little did we know that in a few short moments our lives would change forever. Our baby girl (which we also found out in that same ultrasound that it was a girl), Clare, no longer had a heartbeat. We found out we would be delivering her the very next day and with that came many, many questions. Our nurse brought to our attention a nonprofit organization, Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep, that offers to take photos for parents during this intimate time. Little did I know at that moment how much of an impact that decision to have a NILMDTS photographer take our daughter’s photos would have on us through this journey. I think about it often, what would we do without the amazing photos captured of our daughter that day.
Clare Cassidy DiBlasi was born on June 9th at 3:44 p.m. weighing 4lbs 2oz and measuring 18 inches long. She had a full head of hair and was too beautiful for words. Diane Bomar was our photographer that day. She was with us from the moment we delivered. She gave us an amazing gift.
I have shared with her our gratitude for catching every moment she could of our beautiful angel. I have shared with her how much of an impact these pictures have made on our life and our healing. Our daughters would have never seen their baby sister and our family and friends would have never known her beauty if we didn’t have pictures to share. Diane captured that little piece of heaven that touched down on us that day. That one day that Clare taught all of us in that room just how precious life is, how gifts sometimes come to us in our most painful moments, and how we can learn more in just one day than we have in our entire lives thus far.
Recently we again reached out to Diane to have her take our first family pictures post Clare. I can say that because there is a distinct before and after in our lives with Clare. We had them taken at the cemetery where she is buried or as our daughters call it “Clare’s park.” That afternoon as we were getting ready for these pictures I shared with our oldest daughter Addie that a very special person would be taking our pictures. I told her it was Diane, the same photographer who took pictures of Clare. Right when we got out of our cars Addie ran over to greet Diane asking, “Are you really the one who took pictures of my baby sister?” Just another wonderful reminder that Clare was and still is a part of our lives. Then she and hers sisters proudly showed her the way to Clare’s grave. We took a lot of pictures that day and it was amazing. Usually family photo sessions can be crazy chaos, but honestly something that I thought would be very heartbreaking for our family turned out to be very special. I guess that is what it is truly all about, finding grace in even the most heartbreaking of life’s moments.
The love and photographers your nonprofit provides for families that have to go through this loss is something to be proud of and to truly feel good about in this world. We are forever grateful.”
~ Julie, Mom to Clare Cassidy