A baby story

New mom welcomes motherhood with positivity, faith and strength

Written by Sara Garrison | Photography by Allison Taylor Photograph

As an expectant mother in her first pregnancy, Candace Huslig has savored the joy and excitement of preparing for the arrival of her new baby. Her positive outlook is an inspiration to all as she welcomes her new baby girl during the tumultuous time of a global pandemic.

High school sweethearts, Candace and Landon Huslig, were married in September 2015. They were expecting their daughter, Norene, in April 2020 when their dreams for the final months of their first pregnancy and their new daughter’s arrival shifted.

“I can’t say that a global pandemic had ever crossed my mind. I couldn’t have imagined this being the way we welcome our baby into the world. I know for me, even just a month ago, my mind was full of dreaming of the normal end-of-pregnancy things. Our couples shower was nearing. We were putting final touches together in our daughter’s nursery and soaking up time with family and friends,” explains Candace.

“Covid-19 has changed most of those normal end-of-pregnancy joys. Whether that’s canceled showers; only one support person for delivery and closed waiting rooms at the hospitals; not getting to see or be with family and friends the last few weeks; fears of contracting the virus and separation from our baby girl; and the reality that family, friends and loved ones will be meeting her via video calls, photos or even through our front door,” says Candace. “Yes, these changes are hard to process, but I think for me the hardest part of all of it was the amount of unknowns that revolved around this virus and the daily changes it brought along with it.”

With the uncertainty surrounding Covid-19, Candace and Landon have an incredible outlook. They have chosen positivity over anxiety. They are relying on their faith to help them through these uncertain times.

“During this time, the feelings of sadness, grief, frustration and confusion all have come in waves. Being pregnant during a pandemic has opened my eyes to see this same faith and trust I have now has equipped me for the same faith and trust I will need to have daily as a mom,” says Candace. “I feel called to have a positive outlook during the last part of my pregnancy. We are still so blessed with this baby and bringing a baby into this world.”

Although Covid-19 has changed Candace’s pregnancy story, her excitement for motherhood and the future with her new daughter remains unchanged.

“I’m excited to experience loving my own child unconditionally and the sense of closeness I know I’ll feel the first time meeting her and seeing her face,” says Candace.

She is also so excited to share this experience with her husband and soul mate of 10 years, Landon.

“I couldn’t be more excited to start this journey of parenthood with him,” says Candace.

“I know he will always be there for Norie, have her back, be the best listening ear, a shoulder to cry on, be her biggest cheerleader, always be able to make her smile or laugh, help her with her math homework, choose her daily, guide her to Jesus, and make her feel like the most special and beautiful girl because that’s exactly what he’s done for me the past 10 years.”

“Our new baby, Norie, is our bright light in this darkness.” — Candace Huslig

When it comes to parenting their new daughter, Candace credits her family as being incredible role models in her life. She hopes to follow their example as she journeys through motherhood.

“My mom showed me firsthand what it looks like to put everyone else before yourself. She’s the most selfless person I know and she has the biggest heart. I can call her at any moment and know she will be there with a listening ear or helpful hand,” says Candace. “My dad taught me to be driven, confident and strong. I know my drive and determination in life comes from seeing the way my dad cared for and provided for us, and the sacrifices he made to always put our family first. My sisters are also two examples of incredible mothers in my life. Getting to see both of them step into the motherhood role with such grace and strength is something I hope to do as well.”

During such uncertainty in the world, little baby Norie has been a ray of hope and excitement for Candace and Landon.

“We had known for a long time if we were to ever have a girl, her name would be Norene, after Landon’s grandmother, and we would call her Norie for short. When we looked up the meaning of her name just for fun, we saw that it meant ‘light.’ That is exactly what our hope and prayer has been for her: that she will be a light when everything else seems dark. That she use that light for good and to know deep down where the source of that light truly comes from and that’s from God above,” says Candace. “We hope and pray her unique story will be used for His good and to bring Him glory. I hope she knows how loved she is by us and those around her, but more importantly that she grows to know the Lord’s unconditional love for her.”

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