Adoptive families get priceless family photos
OKLAHOMA CITY — Families who have adopted a child can tell you the process is taxing, both financially and emotionally. But at the end of the adoption process, some photographers are giving those families a priceless gift. Family photo shoots can be chaotic, especially for a family of 8. We watched as photographer Melissa Osborn snapped photos free of charge."I always give a wall print to all of my families," said Osborn. "They don't have to spend a dime with me if they don't want to, and they will have something on their wall afterwards." Osborn is part of an organization of photographers nationwide called Red Thread Sessions. Families with an adoption finalized in the last 3 months can get a free photo session. And because adoptions come in many forms, it could mean a shoot in courtroom, at the airport as a new family is united for the first time, or in the hospital delivery room during an open adoption. "It's just so nice because our family is done," said mom of 6, Tiffany Smith. "It's finalized. And it's been such a long process. So it's just such a wonderful way to celebrate." For the Smiths, their Red Thread Session marks the completion of a long and at times hard journey. After having 3 biological children, they felt called to adopt locally. They fostered, then adopted 3 more children. The adoption of their youngest just became official."It comes with a lot of stress, a lot of paperwork," said Smith. "But in the end, it's just the biggest blessing there ever is." Osborn knows exactly the emotions these families face. She adopted a son from Rwanda. So this is her way of giving back to other families, using her time and talent."It means the world to me," Osborn said. "I know what it feels like to come home. I know what it feels like to pray for a child and not be pregnant and want to tell the whole world, 'Look, this is us!'" Their Red Thread Session captured the beginning of a new chapter for the Smiths. They say they couldn't have afforded the photo shoot without the help. Now they have cherished family photo years in the making."We were just really excited to have the family photo," Smith said. "Finally." Right now, there are only 2 metro photographers participating in Red Thread Sessions and they say they need other professional photographers to step up and volunteer. Learn more at www.redthreadsessions.com.