Blessings | Jacksonville Newborn Photographer

I had the absolute privilege of photographing this incredible family a couple of days after they came home from the hospital with their sweet Abigail.  Take a few minutes and ready their story as told by Erik AKA Mom : )

At 12:37am Wednesday, August 6th, we were blessed to have our second daughter, Abigail Noelle Jones, join our family. 8lbs 11oz, 21in with a full head of hair. She is our perfect, wonderful little girl. We want to share her story so far with you. At our 18 week ultrasound, we were told that Abigail showed multiple markers for Down syndrome and then the follow up blood test was also positive. Initially, we were shocked and scared, mourning the loss of a “normal” baby. But God quickly worked on our hearts and His peace surpassed our fear. We were soon excited and honored to have a child with special needs. Then, at our 30 week ultrasound, our Dr. discovered that a mass had developed in the left hemisphere of Abigail’s brain. A fetal MRI revealed the mass was a rare tumor, most likely a type of cancerous teratoma, that was replacing her brain tissue and destroying normal brain anatomy. Our hearts were broken and our minds weighted with questions and fear of the unknown to come. Additional ultrasounds over the following weeks showed significant growth and our appointments with neurosurgery and other specialists determined that the prognosis was bleak. Her head grew to a size that made a vaginal birth to risky and a C-section was scheduled. Leaning on the grace and perfection of our God, we knew little Abby’s life had a purpose, no matter how long or short it was. We pray continually for her healing but our faith in God was/is not based on Abigail’s healing. God is not a god that responds to our plans and how we want things to work out. Our faith is in the loving Father that His plans are bigger than ours and those plans will bring people to eternity. Sometimes the things He needs to bring others to eternity may cause us to walk through tremendous pain but we need to focus joy of the eternal and not the pain of the temporal. Our c section was scheduled for August 12th, but once again, Abigail had her own agenda and Erika went into labor the evening of August 5th and she delivered via c section shortly after midnight on August 6th. Our expectation was that we wouldn’t have much time with Abigail after she was born, but our hearts leapt with joy when a beautiful pink baby girl came out screaming (and pooping!). She is moving, nursing, squawking, sticking out her tongue, opening her eyes, holding our fingers, and doing all things a baby does. She has blown us away and surpassed every expectation. God has blessed us with countless precious moments that we did not think we would have. A MRI done after birth confirmed that nothing can be done to treat the tumor, it is too invasive and aggressive. The neurosurgeon is certain it is one of 3 types of tumors, all cancerous. Treatment with chemo would likely kill a baby this young, and surgery is futile since they cannot remove it all and it would likely grow back quickly. The neurosurgeon recommended that we take Abigail home and cover her with love. So we did and pediatric hospice will help us navigate the journey to come. We have smothered this little one with love and kisses and will continue to do so every moment we get. This situation is tragic and unbelievably difficult. It feels like we are living someone else’s life, some other family that you read about on the news. We don’t want to lose our daughter. We want to see her laugh, dance, fight with her sister, ride a bike, go to school…we want to see her life. But most likely, her whole life will be weeks or months, not years. Our hearts are broken and ache for the time that we don’t have. We stand on this – our God is good. He was good before we knew what a fetal brain tumor was and He is good now. He has shown up and will continue to show up. He will keep us standing and moving forward. He will carry us when we cannot walk another step. He will bring joy through sorrow. He will heal Abigail, in our arms on this earth or the moment she breaths her last breath and is embraced by her Heavenly Father. His promises are true and we rest in Him.

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  • First Birthday Photographer Jacksonville » Jacksonville Newborn Photographer | 8.08 Photography - […] baby.  I’ve been blessed to work with several Buddy Basket recipients.  Anyone remember Abigial? : […]ReplyCancel

  • Linda - What a tragic story. I feel terrible for your family. What a beautiful little girl. I’m happy for your family that you understand God’s hand in all things. You will see your daughter in the next life and she will be happy and whole. God bless your family and your sweet, sweet baby girl.ReplyCancel

  • Tina - Dear Erika & Stephen –
    I’m not sure if you are reading the comments on this site but hopefully someone will see this and pass it along to you. I too have a daughter with down syndrome and 4 years ago she was also diagnosed with brain cancer. She was 6 years old at the time but they are not sure when the tumors first appeared. She had Non germinoma germ cell tumors and it is possible that she had it in utero and they grew slowly. When we discovered them at age 6, the tumor had metastisized and she had 3 tumors across her brain. We first started noticing problems when she was around 2 which leads me to believe that they were there early on. Today, Alessandra is 12 years old. she goes to school, attends dance class and is our precious little girl. I am writing to you to tell you to not give up hope that she will pull through this. Our children are incredibly resilient. We did do chemo and radiation but we also did a lot of alternative medicines including Reiki. I believe these made all the difference. It was incredibly hard for us to find other families to speak with since tumors in children with down syndrome are incredibly rare. I posted across all the DS websites and only found 4 children with DS that ever had any kind of tumor. If you would like to chat – please email me at – I am sending all my love towards your precious Abagail that she can beat this and that the doctors are wrong. You can believe how often they are. You can read Alessandra’s story at

  • Michelle Eschler - Thank you for capturing such a beautiful amazing family! It broke my heart as I too have a little girl with Down syndrome. She is healthy now, but hasn’t always been and i can remember feeding tubes and oxygen. Thank you for your faith and increasing mine! I will pray for your family.ReplyCancel

  • Jamie - Oh man, that baby is beautiful! They will have such a precious gift to be able to raise her someday after this life. What a sweet angel they get. 🙂ReplyCancel

  • Sandro Boneberg - While there is pulse, there is life, there is hope.

    Best RegardsReplyCancel

  • Sandro Boneberg - Hello
    Probably family have tried many alternatives for healing. Keep trying.
    To search on Rene Quinton, uses seawater to cure many diseases.
    There are many plants that heal and prevent cancer, such frangipani (janauba) or melon are Caetano. Continue the research.
    Best RegardsReplyCancel

  • Leanne - What a gift baby Abigail is to your family! She is absolutely beautiful and so precious. May God’s peace and comfort be with you always. And those little lips…(sigh)she is just adorable:)ReplyCancel

  • Lynn - She is so beautiful, so pure. Though her prognosis is not what you would hope, she is a miracle and blessing others. You are lucky to have her for as long as God wills.ReplyCancel

  • Gaylynne - Thank you for sharing your pictures of beautiful Abigail and for blessing her family with such sweet memories of love. You are truly gifted and inspired to help the Jones family. May the Jones family feel the peace, understanding and love of our Heavenly Father to comfort them during this time.ReplyCancel

  • Hilary - How very blessed you are to have two beautiful daughters, and how blessed are they to have such loving parents! God is good, and you are loved. Thank you for sharing such a heart touching beautiful story of love and devotion.ReplyCancel

  • Patricia McCormick - ESSIAC – a tea made of four plants, used by Ojibwe First Nations, Canada for cancer. My father drank this tea for prostate cancer and his doctor expressed amazement that Dad’s cancer did not spread to his bones, over a time frame of almost 30 years.
    Burdock, one of the four plants, has been and is being tested and it does kill cancer cells.
    Please pass this info to the Jones family.
    The History of Essiac and Nurse Rene M. Caisse
    Burdock success versus cancer
    I suggest finding a Naturopath who knows about Essiac.
    God Bless You Jones Family – PatriciaReplyCancel

  • Nicole - You did an amazing job capturing this family 🙂

    They will cherish these memories forever.ReplyCancel

  • Julie - Thank you for sharing your beautiful daughter Abigail with us. What a precious gift you have been blessed with. Praying that the time you have together will be truly wonderful. May God bless you with His peace.ReplyCancel

  • Kristin - thank you for blessing this family during such a difficult time. what a precious gift.ReplyCancel

  • Jo - Dear Erika and Stephen,
    My heart goes out to you. Bless you as you love on little Abigail. I cannot imagine what you are going through but I pray that the God of all comfort would comfort you and strengthen you throughout this time.
    I too am a parent of a precious Abigail, who has Down Syndrome. Did you know the name means “Father’s Joy” ?
    God bless you and your little family

  • Nathalie - Abigail is so beautiful and perfect.ReplyCancel

  • Marian Kaye Harvey - Your faith has truly healed my faith!!! I will keep you and your family in my prayers. Abigail Noelle Jones, is truly a miracle of healing and faith. Thank you so much for sharing your miracle!!!
    Marian Kaye HarveyReplyCancel

  • Dr Twana L | Family Opens Up About Newborn’s Inoperable Brain Tumor - […] The Jones’ thought she might die shortly after birth. She didn’t, and a few days later professional photographer Mary Huszcza took the photos seen […]ReplyCancel

    • Susanne B Ljungren - One only has to look at a few photos to know what your mission has been. I cannot imagine any one else having been given this gift of Abigail and been able to show the pure life and love for this tiny and perfect child! When the Lord comes for her, I can visualize her, in all her perfection, looking down on you and all her family and seeing how well-loved she was in her first home. And by sharing your photos, so many other families can believe that they can make it through this very difficult time, giving and receiving the love and support that they can share. Thank you for allowing your precious gift to be shared. God Bless you,
      Susie Ljungren

      Sorry, I don’t know what a URL isReplyCancel

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