After years of struggling through infertility and three miscarriages, Vikki Hamilton was told that her only chance at conceiving and carrying a pregnancy to term was through IVF.
Hamilton was absolutely devastated and unsure about what she wanted to do next. To help chronicle the complex emotions she was feeling, she reached out to Abbi Fox of Foxy Photography to put her internal struggle into beautiful and heartbreaking pictures.
As it turns out, Fox was the perfect photographer for the job.
Already the mother to two beautiful children by two easy pregnancies, Fox had always envisioned having four little ones.
“When my daughter turned two we said we’d be OK if we got pregnant anytime,” she told Scary Mommy.
Unfortunately, after two years of trying, she had a miscarriage and doctors eventually diagnosed her with PCOS.
“While I only had one miscarriage, the pain will be carried with me forever,” she says.
Fox shot Hamilton in several emotional photos — including one with a tornado in the background.
“There are so many emotions, ups and downs. Sometimes I could find myself sitting on the couch in a trance and I literally felt that my heart was twisting. So the tornado image represents the heart-wrenching emotions,” she said.
For Hamilton, poppies were an important visual in her emotional struggle. Baby books say that the fetus is about the size of a poppy seed at four weeks, which is as far as Hamilton got in her pregnancies before miscarrying. In her blog Beyond the Poppyseed she discusses the emotions she experienced dealing with her situation.
“The physical pain of miscarrying did not even compare to the emotional pain I was experiencing,” Hamilton wrote.
“It’s taken a long time for me to open up about this, as so many people won’t understand the pain I’ve endured. The pain of losing not one, but three pregnancies. It’s the hardest thing to lose a child, no matter how young, or how soon. No matter how long you carried them. I carried each of my three angel babies less than 4-5 weeks, but they’ve left an impression on my heart forever.”
For Fox, she hopes that these photographs will help people understand the heartbreak that comes with infertility.
“Sometimes the things people say can be hurtful and you don’t even know it. When a woman is told that she cannot have her own children it is the most gut wrenching thing to deal with and there can be a lot of shame and internal struggle with that,” she says.
“Women who are struggling with this need support and not advice.”
In one of the photos, Hamilton is posed with a bouquet of poppies, the symbol of her miscarriage, and a rainbow, to show she still has hope for her own baby one day.
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