Penelope, on the day she was born | Blog | Alicia Juniku – North Carolina Photographer

Alicia Juniku – North Carolina Photographer


Penelope is an extraordinary baby. Michael & Erin prayed for her for so long, and finally a wee ball of being came to be.  However, there were still 9 months to wait to hold her in their arms!  Now, you know I love these people (remember their maternity session?), and so even before she was born bitty P was so dear to me.

One morning, almost two weeks pas her due date, I was smiling my way through a newborn session, when I got the call from Michael.  Erin was in labor!  Jump in the car, and zip on over (speed limit, I swear…..or do I?).  The way Michael sounded, I thought I would miss it!

Birth is a mystery.

Words are not enough.

– Marie O’Connor –

Now, here is where their story becomes different from other births I’ve been honored to be invited to document in the past.  Penelope, as special as her parents are to me, and as waited on her conception was, she was destined for a truly extraordinary birth.  Don’t you agree?  I’m going to abridge Penelope’s story.  However, this is not because it’s not worth telling, but because sometimes I struggle for words when things are especially close to me.  After 4 nights and 5 days with this dear family, their desired home birth became a hospital transfer.

Now, as a North Carolina photographer, I have seen mamas work VERY hard to bring their children light side.  I must say, however, that the strength that Erin brought to her labor is beyond what many of us could muster.  She carried that strength through the starts and stops of her labor.  Through her pain, and through her transfer.  Ultimately, she carried it into her emergency c-section to give birth to her daughter.  Later, Penelope was transferred to specialists in Chapel Hill for two weeks.

Most birth stories are complete in those moments when mother, father, and baby find the quiet that comes a few hours after birth.   When everyone breaths a sigh of relief.  After the fingers and toes have been counted.  When the kisses have been given, and when the knowing looks have been exchanged.  But for Penelope and her family, her birth story wasn’t over.  Not until after those weeks in the NICU, not until that evening when Penelope was finally brought home.  The next morning I was there, to welcome her and finally hold her in my arms.

Welcome to the world, Penelope…

we’re all so very happy you’re here.


Welcome home….

If these images have moved you as they do me, please leave a comment of love below.  I would love for this new family to know how much we all love them, and their birth images!

Alicia Juniku Photography is available for maternity, newborn, family, engagement, and wedding photography.


17 thoughts on “Penelope, on the day she was born | Blog | Alicia Juniku – North Carolina Photographer

  1. Wow! You captured the raw realness of the moments…and the days.
    Yes, Erin is a fierceful Momma Bear!
    Michael supported her beautifully through this incredibly tough time.
    Thanks for capturing the love, strength and beauty that brought us Penelope!

  2. Every story needs to be told- especially one of such strength, bravery and courage of mom, daddy and baby P. The miracle of birth and of the doctor’s creativity and ability to save must be chronicled. I pray that each year y’all will recount to P her exciting entrance into this world, I pray the feelings of those moments stay front of mind so no day is taken for granted. Treasure your precious family, for it is a true miracle. Blessings

  3. Tears flowing as I could literally feel the love oozing from each photograph! Love these people and the way you captured their journey!

  4. These are just breathe taking. The love just pours out of every photo. So happy to have been given such a precious glimpse into this birth story.

  5. The right words are hard to come by. But The photography is amazing! Knowing the paternal grandmother like I do, I’ve been praying for the Escobars for months and awaiting Penelope’s conception and arrival like all who read this blog! I couldn’t be happier for Michael and Erin. I know they will be awesome parents! My prayers were answered and I’ve been through a lot when it comes to fertility. Sending my love too!

  6. It is so wonderful to watch these young parents work together so well to bring a new joy into their life. What a blessing!

  7. Thank you for allowing us to view little snippets of this miraculous journey through the lens of your photographer! Life is a Miracle! God’s Blessings to all.

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