Well this season is bonkers! So I thought whilst I document it I’d also ask some of those whom I’ve had the privilege to photograph, a bit about their lives in this crazy season…I met these guys many years ago, and had an amazing time shooting their amazingly glamorous wedding (with hot tub roof party to finish the day off in style!!), so it was great to grab the opportunity to see them again… and see what’s changed!!
Meet the amazing Hannah and Adam!
“Tell me a bit about your family”…
We are a recently expanded family of four; Mum- Hannah, Dad- Adam, Ava age 6 and baby Ruby now 3 months old! We live in Heaton Mersey, Stockport and we all love music, dance, sports, and watching films with plenty of snacks!
“What has been the biggest change for you during lockdown?”
Our biggest change in lockdown has been becoming a family of four! Ruby Rose Smikle was born on her due date, March 21st just before total lockdown was enforced. We were already adhering to social distancing that week, staying at home, and Ava’s school was closed, so this felt quite different and completely unexpected during the two days in labour! With the pandemic in full force it felt like we were entering into the unknown, aside from having new baby! When the time came, we found the hospital was eerily quiet when we arrived, and thankfully Dad was able to be a part of labour and birth. Sadly for friends of ours since this hasn’t been the case, so we feel very fortunate to have shared the experience of Ruby’s birth together. We’ve all settled in well and found the time of lockdown to have really helped with family bonding, and gave us lots of grace to stay at home- in our pjs!
“What is the funniest or greatest thing that has happened during lockdown?”…
One of the funniest things that happened was just after Ruby’s birth. We had prepared for a home birth, and had filled a birth pool in our living room, lit candles and watched Parks and Recreation to help distract from the labour! Unfortunately, when the midwife came to visit, she said due to staff shortages connected to the COVID-19 situation, there was only her on shift in the community, and therefore it was unsafe to have a homebirth. So, disappointing we had to blow out the candles, leave the birthing pool, and jump in the car to the hospital where Ruby was safely delivered. Coming home, to Ava’s delight we opened the front door to the birthing pool filled with (now cold) water! Well there was only one thing for it; to get the swimming gear on, add in some hot water, pop the goggles on and play ‘go fish’ with the birth pool thermometer…! So it had its use after all!
“What’s been the hardest or most challenging?”
One of the hardest things has been the lack of physical and social support, for all of us! When you’re sleep deprived and bleary eyed, going to the local coffee shop, taking a walk to a friend’s house for some cake and new baby snuggles while you can drink a hot brew, or going to a support group/drop in clinic can be such a lifeline. With everything and everyone locked down this has been tough. Even Grandparents haven’t been able to visit properly and hold the newest family member, and have had to settle for window waves and down the path chats. With schools closed, like the rest of the country we’ve also had to take up ‘homeschooling’ (or at least attempting to learn at home..!), so this has been an interesting challenge in amongst nappy changes, feeds and naps for baby! I think we’ve all missed our friends, family and Ava’s teachers(!), and while Zoom and Facetime have helped keep us connected to some extent, I think we’re all looking forward to going for a cheeky Nando’s with everyone as soon as we can!
“Whats the one good thing you’re going to do differently because of this experience?”
Lockdown has challenged us all to re-evaluate our lives; our finances, our work, our home life, our priorities. We have really appreciated our friendships during this time, and have tried to keep in touch where we can. We’ve loved the creative ways we’ve been able to keep connected, be that FaceTime chats, posting drawings and letters the old fashioned way(!), doing doorstep drop offs for other new families like ourselves (everyone needs cake, right?!), and we’ve gratefully received some thoughtful care packages and treats too! It’s given us an opportunity to cultivate and invest in community and take it back to neighbourhood basics, and that’s been a lovely experience for the whole family!
Thank you to Hannah and her amazing family for sharing ‘Life in Lockdown’ with us – If you’d like to book a mini shoot for £45 with 5 digital prints please email me: firstname.lastname@example.org