LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) - Photography captures our most important moments. The moments we never want to let go of. A national organization with Arkansas ties captures the silver lining between pain and joy for hundreds of families.
In 2009, Bethany and Scott Allison gave birth to their first son Ethan. The little guy changed their life.
"He came out six pounds eleven ounces, as healthy as can be," said Bethany Allison of Little Rock.
A camera captures forever big smiles and silly faces. It also records cherished moments and somber realities; and for the Allison family, it brought an unexpected friend.
"It's hard I mean I've met so many families and not all of them I become friends with," said Lizzy Yates, a Little Rock Photographer.
Two years after Ethan's birth, the Allison's learned they were pregnant again, but in the later stages, Bethany knew something was wrong.
"Cameron's heart had stopped beating and so it was a big shock and just really hard. It wasn't until that evening when I delivered him that we found out he died due to cord entanglement," Bethany remembers. "A nurse came in and asked us if we would like to have pictures taken of Cameron by 'Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep' and that was the first time we had ever heard of the organization and...Actually at first when you hear that question that set me back because I thought that would be inappropriate," Scott Allison admitted.
The two eventually decided to go ahead with the pictures of little Cameron. Yates also felt apprehensive about the project in the beginning.
"I meet families on the absolute worst day of their life," said Yates, fighting back tears.
Yates provides photography free of charge to families who lose their child at birth through the organization 'Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep.' The nationwide non-profit organization partners with volunteer photographers to give families remembrance pictures.
"It was definitely emotional. It took me back to that day; I have a slide show of all the pictures. It helps me go through the grieving process," said Bethany Allison.
The Allisons lost another baby roughly a year later after Bethany went into pre-term labor, and the heart of baby Davis stopped. Amid tremendous pain, the family requested a photographer again.
"We have keepsakes now...that would have been a huge regret not being able to have that done," said Scott Allison.
"I was afraid our boys would be forgotten as we moved on," said Bethany Allison.
The Allisons are expecting again. Bethany hopes to bring little Brianna into the world in March and all signs are positive so far in the pregnancy. For now they raise their four year old son and reflect on the boys they lost, thankful a camera captures forever.
"Treated very delicately and because she was willing to do that we have these memories that we can always cherish," said Scott Allison.
Yates tells THV11 there are only two photographers in the Little Rock area taking part in 'Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep,' and the demand for pictures is high. If you would like to get more information about the organization you can click here.