Almost the same birthday | Oak Park, IL birth photography

Almost the same birthday | Oak Park, IL birth photography

“Courage isn’t having the strength to go on – it is going on when you don’t have strength.” 
― Napoleon Bonaparte

I am in awe of this incredible mama. The grace and strength she showed during her incredible birth story was so powerful. This sweet baby decided to start making her appearance while I was away in Denver. On my last day of vacation, mama text’d me that her water had broke. It was 10 pm and I was to fly back to Chicago at 5 am. I was so excited for her , but nervous that I would not make it, and my back up would absolutely have to step in and photograph it. Things slowed down and I made it home. I had woken up at 3 am to make my flight and with all the chaos of getting home I didn’t sleep. At around 7 pm I was called to head over to join the birth team. I watched as she worked through her surges.

During the night her amazing team noticed something seemed different. The head midwife joined the birth and she accessed the situation. They determined that the baby was facing the incorrect way. If you’re reading this I completely act like a fly on the wall, I don’t ask questions, so the details are fussy and I’m just typing what I remember. I heard the words “face presentation” among other things. After trying so hard to change the presentation manually, and with a bunch of other incredible ways via her Doula. The call was made to head to the hospital for a C-section. You could feel the amount disappointment and sadness was so real for this mama. She had worked so incredibly hard, and now the reality was things had changed. This was my first C-section experience, and while I wish I had been able to capture the babies arrival, I still was able to see those first moments as she became the mama she was meant to be for a second time.

What an honor to be a part of this story. This is why I photograph births. It is all magical. C section mama’s your story matters. Your birth is just as beautiful.

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Morales Maternity session, baby number three is on the horizon | Adri De La Cruz Itasca IL, family photography

Morales Maternity session, baby number three is on the horizon | Adri De La Cruz Itasca IL, family photography

We caught a sunny day. Lately its nothing but rain rain rain. I was so happy that we had the time to head over to photograph this beautiful mama. While we did not get a hold of gorgeous gold light we still managed to get some dreamy shots experimenting with light. No matter what type of light maternity sessions land on. Mother’s to be just have that incredible, honest to god, natural glow. They don’t even have to try.

This mama is about to give birth to her third baby boy. & as faith would have it, she finally got a big deal doctors appointment for her middle-to be child. Just as shes about to welcome a new baby. Women are such warriors and I know for certain that she will rise to the occasion, be the biggest advocate for him. and at the same time care and swoon over this new baby. Life is such a trip. I cannot wait to meet this new baby.

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Half a year old | Adri De La Cruz Batavia IL, family photographer

Half a year old | Adri De La Cruz Batavia IL, family photographer

6 months have gone by since her newborn shoot. Its crazy to see how fast time flies. What a concept. These little babies wear the time stamp so very pronounced. Their cheeks and chubby thighs, balance and hair growth shot it. Every day is a new change. So don’t blink and capture all of their babyhood.

This sweet little lady was mostly all smiles. She’s learning to balance when she seats, and is so aware of her brother’s presence . Looking over at him every time she could. I’m looking forward to seeing her one last time this summer.

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Lunde family, the birth of an unnamed boy |Adri De La Cruz Best Chicago + West Suburbs Birth Photographer

Lunde family, the birth of an unnamed boy |Adri De La Cruz Best Chicago + West Suburbs Birth Photographer
“When I dare to be powerful, to use my strength in the service of my vision, then it becomes less and less important whether I am afraid.” 
― 
Audre Lorde

What a whirlwind of a time I had leading up to this birth. My client had mentioned that she, with every delivery, always got prodromal labor. While I had the easiest job in this situation, I was not ready for the uncertainty. She was most definitely done being pregnant. Every day seemed to be the day for about three weeks. Having dealt with the birth of my kids, I had no experience with pains from labor that didn’t progress anything. Throughout everything, my client kept such a positive attitude. We both stressed whether this beautiful boy would make his arrival on his due date December 24. Thankfully he remained put until after, two days before the new year. I arrived at my client house, she was worried that she had called all of us too soon. I was getting ready for bed when I got the call. I was full of excitement. I was not expecting a quick 3-hour birth. She deserved that though, for him to come quickly after making her wait. Her strength and power were just amazing. I am so grateful that I was a part of this incredible moment.

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Love on the beach | Adri De La Cruz Chicago and West suburbs intimate wedding photographer

Love on the beach | Adri De La Cruz Chicago and West suburbs intimate wedding photographer

Earlier this year I hosted my first ever workshop. I was as sick as a dog. I think my body loves to mess with me the most when stress is high. The only constant during stressful times is knowing that there will be so much out of your control. I might as well surrender to it. I wanted to share these images from that day because I was so insanely in awe of B. Brittany De Jesus that is. She’s the real deal. Just a genuine, vibrant soul. Full of that spark that so many in this industry seem to just let go off at a certain point. I hope she never loses that shine. Check out these incredible images, taken by me, instructed and posed by her. I learned so damn much. I’m beyond grateful for her.

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Goodbye summer | Adri De La Cruz- Chicago + West suburbs family photographer

Goodbye summer | Adri De La Cruz- Chicago + West suburbs family photographer

Yesterday it felt like a sweet goodbye to summer. Yes, while I know the weather is so unpredictable I felt this overwhelming need to capture these very last moments of summer for my kids. I turned on the sprinkler for about 15 minutes and captured their joy. but let’s be honest there were also moments of them fighting for the best spot near the water. After this summer I no longer have a kid at home to keep me busy. There is so much change ahead for us. Schedules are getting full, and so are backpacks.

Next week is the first day of school for my littlest, she’s starting prek. I know she’s going to love it, she is one of the most extroverted kids I know. I look forward to hearing all of the stories. Change is never easy. Nonetheless, we just have to keep moving forward.

 

 

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Beautiful night to have a baby | Adri De La Cruz- Chicago and west suburbs Birth Photographer

Beautiful night to have a baby | Adri De La Cruz- Chicago and west suburbs Birth Photographer

Oh, what a privilege it was to be present during this amazing over-night birth. It was the first time I joined a family overnight. Angelas’ strength was awe inspiring. She truly was one of those very peaceful birthers. She totally blew me away with the way she rocked this birth.

To say it was eventful and beautiful would be an understatement, there was chaos and so much uncertainty when it came to getting the water ready for birth. But then that sweet baby girl emerged and nothing else mattered. The big sister got woken up right before baby sister made her debut, and even though Angela was going through a contraction the smile on her face was so insanely contagious. I cannot say enough how much she amazed me. Although she had so much support her partner really takes the cake, he was so helpful and awesome in every way. I truly fell in love with their family. Stay tuned from images of their new baby.

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Kerns Family | Adri De La Cruz Chicago and west suburbs lifestyle family photographer

Kerns Family  | Adri De La Cruz Chicago and west suburbs lifestyle family photographer

I met Lydia online.

She was a part of a private and small Facebook group started on WebMD, aimed at coping with miscarriage. That one thing unified a group of about 12 of us. I’ve loved her ever since. She’s one of those girls that can see your point of view but then tell you kindly and calmly how wrong you are without making you feel bad for it. Obviously, we were meant to be friends.
She invited me to join her in her new home in North Carolina to take some photographs of her beautiful family. They are all each authentically beautiful and I’m so honored to have been able to capture a slice of their love. Also that baby! I mean how freaking adorable is she? She gave me allll of the damn baby fever in the world.

We need to plan a girls trip soon for sure! I love her to pieces and even more so know that we became IRL friends. Oh how the world has changed.

 

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CLIFFORD FAMILY | Adri De La Cruz- Chicago and West Suburbs, rhythmic storytelling family photographer

CLIFFORD FAMILY | Adri De La Cruz- Chicago and West Suburbs, rhythmic storytelling family photographer

I taught for the first time!

I photographed a REAL FAMILY in their ACTUAL home in front of other 20 + photographers. I was hella nervous, and not to mention, what the rest of my crew doesn’t realize is that I screwed up with Cate (the mama) I gave her the wrong date, and It could have been a catastrophe. Cate had cleaners over in preparation for the NEXT DAY! why am I telling you this? Well because to screw up is just part of life, and I am someone who rolls with the punches. Plus I had Brittany Dejesus on my team, she would have helped me knock on every door until we found a family willing to be our models if the Clifford’s had not been able to. As fate would have it my snaffuu worked out in so many ways, unfortunately, Cate’s grandfather fell ill that weekend, and the fact that we shot earlier made it possible for Cate to drive two hours to her family and to be together in such a tough time. He passed that next day. I am so so beyond grateful for the time Cate and her family gave us. Especially as she was so surprised to see me at the door.

They were so beautiful and their love can be felt on every corner of their beautiful home. I had my ISO set to 5000 and the light was all over the place, I missed some of my most important transitional images. But overall It was such an enlightening experience. During and even before my shoot I kept calling this session Hybrid, a mix of documentary + lifestyle but I’ve added the title of RHYTHMIC STORYTELLING to my work because I need, my images to make sense to me. That’s what I’m sticking to. That is how I am to shoot every session.

I won’t lie, it was chaos, and I probably forgot a million things I wanted to say, but it was an incredible experience. One I won’t forget.

INSTA LOVE < —–

 

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