Some "me" time.

McAllen Photographer | The Making Friends Tour, Jukebox The Ghost and The Mowgli’s in Austin, Texas.

View from Covert Park at Mount Bonnell in Austin, Texas | Photo by Norma Hess Photography | McAllen Doula, Photo & Video

Hi y’all!

Sometimes I look at this crazy life I’m living and I can’t help but feel incredibly lucky. I think like most people, (ok, maybe not most…) I often wondered what I was meant to be doing. I never really felt quite right in all my other job opportunities. Although I’ve learned so much through each experience, none felt like it fit me and my soul.

Fast forward 30something years and here I am, living my dream! This dream doesn’t come without a price though. Living life on-call is sometimes challenging (especially when you are a mother of 5.) I have left my own birthday celebration for births, skipped out on my kid’s 1st theater performance, and various other events. Sometimes this part of the job seems a bit too demanding, it’s not just my feelings after all… but I wouldn’t change it.

I.Love. What. I. Do.

McAllen Doula, Photos, and Video. Norma Hess Photography

Now, with that being said, I am human and I do need to recharge and refuel to keep going. This month, I had the opportunity to see one of my favorite bands in concert while visiting Austin, Texas. Jukebox the Ghost was in town and I didn’t want to miss it… my March mama was aware of my plans and she was totally understanding (thanks Emilie!)

I made sure I left a solid plan behind and had a wonderful team to help me out in the event Emilie went into labor while I was out of town. Their support was so comforting, I always want to make sure my clients are in good hands and building these backup photography relationships is so important.

Road trip for the family and me! Norma Hess Photography McAllen, Texas

I spent the weekend with my siblings, laughing, eating all the vegan treats I could find, and laughing some more. Then we jammed to the beat of The Mowgli’s and Jukebox the Ghost at the Empire in Austin. All in all, it was a pretty fantastic weekend and I feel recharged and ready to be on-call again. I treasure this amazing family of mine as I’m sure you will treasure your family as it grows… Life is incredible.

Here’s a glimpse of my concert weekend! (Also, I totally learned that concert photography is not my jam. I’m more of a live-in-the-loud-bumping-base-moment kind of person.)

I hope you enjoy this tiny glimpse into my life! If want to say hi, book a session, or explore the booking process, Click HERE. I can’t wait to meet you and help you document your story.

Tommy Siegel performing with Jukebox The Ghost at the Empire in Austin, TX | Photo by Norma Hess Photography
Ben Thronwill performs with Jukebox The Ghost at the Empire in Austin, Texas | Photo by Norma Hess, McAllen Event Photographer
The Mowgli’s join Jukebox The Ghost on stage to sing “We are the champions.” 3/2/2019 at the Empire in Austin, Texas. Making Friends Tour 2019 | Photo by Norma Hess McAllen, Texas Photographer

Birth of Lucas

Edinburg, Texas birth at The Women’s Corner

Welcome to the world, Lucas!

The Women’s Corner at Edinburg Regional Medical Center | photo by Norma Hess Doula, Photos, & Videos.

On the morning of the 8th, I got a text from Andrea. She was being sent in for an induction and my heart began to race for her. I imagined how excited this first-time-mama was to meet her sweet boy and it was almost time!

Isn’t it incredible how fast time goes? From the moment we find out we’re expecting, to that first appointment with our midwife, to the first ultrasound. It all goes by so quickly. Now here she was, ready to meet her son.

Edinburg Photographer Norma Hess captures a quiet moment before the birth of sweet Lucas. | The Women’s Corner at Edinburg Regional Edinburg, Texas

We stayed in touch for the next few hours and then overnight… things were moving slow and steady. This sweet mama was on the right track to welcome her baby boy.

The following morning, I made my way over to this lovely family and had the best time chatting with everyone in the room. It was so sweet to see sisters bonding while waiting for this little one to arrive. Everyone was in good spirits and ready to meet little Lucas soon.

As labor intensified, the love between Andrea and Jay was more and more beautiful to witness. The way he looked at her was something that I’ll never forget. Becoming parents has a way of bringing couples together. I consider myself so lucky to be able to see these partnerships reach a new level of love as they welcome their babies earthside.

Labor and Delivery Photography by Norma Hess | McAllen Doula, Photos & Video

It was finally time to push, Andrea did an amazing job and Jay got the opportunity to cut the cord. They both soaked up all the details of little Lucas upon meeting him.

Labor and Delivery Photos by Norma Hess | McAllen Doula, Photos & Video

Everyone in the room was overjoyed when this little guy was born. It’s hard not to soak up all that oxytocin in the room in that very moment.

Family rejoices as baby is born! McAllen birth photos by Norma Hess | McAllen Doula, Photos & Video
A grandmother’s love is like no other. Photos by Norma Hess | Candid Family Photos, McAllen, Texas

For a moment, mama needed some attention and was taken over to the OR. Before long, baby Lucas and his mama were reunited for some sweet skin to skin time. There’s nothing more beautiful than the look on a new mother’s face as she gets to meet her sweet baby.

Congratulations F family! Lucas is absolutely beautiful!

(((Are you expecting in 2019? I can help you document these fleeting moments so everyone can be in the frame. Reach to book your birth, fresh 48, or family session today! Click Here to contact Norma Hess.)))

Newborn in-hospital photos by Norma Hess | McAllen doula, photos & video.
Golden hour. The first hour after birth is reserved for parents to bond and fall in love with their new baby. The Women’s Corner in Edinburg honors this very sacred time for parents. Photos by Norma Hess | McAllen Doula, Photos and Video.







My own breastfeeding journey...

Breastfeeding Photos McAllen, Texas 

Hazy memories still linger in my head from those first breastfeeding attempts... I was groggy, trying to wrap my mind around my very first emergency cesarean, putting on my poker face when everyone asked if I was okay. Those first latches didn’t come easily but overall, I’d say we had a fairly smooth 8-10 month breastfeeding journey. 

My second baby comes around and it’s time to figure it all out again. I was determined, I was mourning the loss of the vbac I never got, I was holding this second baby and ready to take on the world again. Another successful breastfeeding journey in the books! 12 months and proud...

Ben was another easy peasy latching baby... yet another failed vbac attempt... another hit to my soul but here he was, healthy, beautiful and in my arms. He nursed like a champ for 2 years. 

Then came Abbey. This family-centered cesarean healed my soul. She was skin to skin immediately and we formed a bond from the start. She and I had some hurdles to get our nursing sessions to flow smoothly. Poor latch, sore nipples, heavy let downs and lots of spit up. Make that TONS of spit up. Overall, I would say that despite the hiccups, we did alright. She is by far the longest nursing journey. We surpassed the 3-year mark this past December and she’s still going strong. Extended breastfeeding is not anything I ever thought about when I held my first little guy... yet here we are, 3 1/2 yrs into my very last breastfeeding round. 

Sometimes I find myself wishing I could have my body back and then I remember those days when the stomach flu strikes and Abbey escaped the wrath of illness... or at least gets by with her “nursies.” Other times, I wish I could just sleep without a toddler trying to yank at my shirt... well, you get the idea... it isn’t always peachy. 

Well, it seems my breast decided to retire without giving me the heads up or waving the white flag. I developed a clogged duct recently (quite common yet, new to me.) Well, this darn duct is stubborn as they come. It’s been a week of warm compresses, lecithin supplements, massage, nursing and more nursing, Vit C, antibiotics, etc etc... the clog persists. Now reality is hitting me in the face and every latch seems like it may be the last. The flood of emotions is high not only because this clog is driving me crazy, but because this is it. She’s the last baby. The last latch that finalizes this chapter of my book. Goodness, I can’t even begin to describe what this bittersweet feeling is like. I want to hold her extra close, savor every last nursing cuddle and hang on to the memory of what has been my life for the past few years. 

These littles will never be this little again. This life of ours will never be what it currently is. We are forever changing and growing as our family moves forward and although it’s exciting, it’s also leaving this mama with a big aching heart. 

~norma

If you would like to document your baby's first or last latch. I'm here mama. I'd be honored to help you preserve these precious moments with you. | 956.369.5777 | CONTACT ME HERE.