The Harris Family | Glencairn Garden

glencairn garden portraits

The Harris Family | Glencairn Garden

Around the time I was first getting started in photography, BJ Harris reached out to me regarding some Christmas photos for her family.  I’ve known BJ and her husband Brian for many years, but never had the chance to meet any of their three adorable children.  Their session was one of my all time favorites, and even though my style has evolved a good bit since then some of their photos still rank as some of my best.

glencairn garden portraitsI was so elated to get the opportunity to work with the Harris family again for some updated photos.  Since our last session their family has gone through a difficult time, dealing with middle son Evan’s devastating genetic disorder that caused him to have to have surgery after surgery.  Seeing them go through this struggle via social media, and how so many people in our community rallied together to support them was truly heart warming.  Thankfully Evan has come through on the other side of all of this as a fighter.  His recovery has been amazing and his spirit is so positive you can’t help but to smile when around him.  Little sister Riley was a natural in front of the camera, posing and giving her signature smile.  While big brother Brice is going to be a heart-breaker, and possibly a model, in the making.

glencairn garden portraits

glencairn garden family portraits


I had such a great time catching up with them and seeing Evan’s progress, but aside from just writing about another session of mine I wanted to share their story, from their perspective.  So here, in the words of mother BJ, is their story…their testimony:

On Monday April 20, 2015, our son Evan was experiencing symptoms of a stomach virus; however, on Wednesday the 22nd, things changed drastically which resulted in Evan being admitted to Levine Children’s Hospital in Charlotte, NC. Preliminary tests detected lethal amounts of ammonia in Evan’s blood stream, which severely affected his nervous system and rendered him unresponsive for a period of time. After extensive testing, Evan was diagnosed with OTC deficiency. Ornithine transcarbamylase (OTC) deficiency is an X-linked genetic disorder of the urea cycle that led to elevated levels of ammonia in the blood.  Due to the toxic levels of ammonia, Evan was faced with life threatening health issues.  We were told that “if” he survived, Evan would never be the same due to severe brain damage. We were told that it was very likely that our child would never walk, talk or think or function in a normal way.  As you can imagine, this was the most difficult thing our family had ever experienced.  Even after the recent loss of Brian’s mom and my dad, this hurt trounced upon like nothing we had ever experienced before.

During this time our little family was tested and stretched to the max but our hope was in God.  We couldn’t see a light at the end of the tunnel but we had faith that the light was there. We prayed, fasted and trusted God for a miracle but it didn’t come overnight.  Evan was hospitalized from April 22nd to June 15th.  During his stay, Evan underwent many surgeries and numerous tests. He also had to go through extensive therapy to learn to talk, swallow, chew, smile, walk, recognize colors, letters, use his fingers, hold his head up, etc.  Our family was in a storm.

This was such a tumultuous storm but as we approach the one year anniversary to this trying time in our life these pictures of our family remind us that God is a Healer!  It confirms in us that we MUST walk by faith and not by sight.  These pictures sanction in us that trials come that we may be strong.  We hope that the sight of the smiles across our faces reveal to you that weeping may endure for a night but joy comes in the morning. We hope that you see in our eyes through these pictures that we are overcomers and that you too can overcome any situation.

glencairn garden family portraits



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