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Pregnancy photo of military couple separated by 7,000 miles goes viral (PHOTOS)

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And we can't help but love dad's outstretched hand.

Part of the joy of welcoming a first child together is sharing nine months of intimate moments: the growing belly, feeling for little kicks, and imagining a future together as new parents. But what happens when the couple has to experience the pregnancy separated by a large ocean, continents, and a huge time difference? Well, they get creative, as Texas couple Nicole and Wesley Bedwell, a hospital corpsman in the US Navy, proved in their recent pregnancy photo shoot. Photographer Traci Lynn Fugitt helped them capture the pregnancy with both parents for future daughter Pyper, even while dad was posted 7,000 miles away in Japan.

“Nicole expressed how upsetting it was that he was deployed, so we decided he needed to be in (the photos) somehow,” Fugitt says in ScaryMommy.com. So Nicole persuaded her husband to pose with an outreached hand, as if touching her growing belly, and then sent the image to Fugitt to edit with a picture of her in a field of flowers. Although the photographer could have superimposed Wesley onto Nicole’s picture, she decided to “put them side by side to show the difference between the locations in different countries,” Fugitt explained. And the result is both beautiful and poignant, as we remember how hard it must be for those in the military who miss out on those key family moments.

Luckily, the Navy serviceman managed to get home on time to welcome little Pyper into the family, even though she came a few weeks earlier than expected. As part of the “belly to birth package” Fugitt offered, she was there to capture the new family in those special few days they had together before Wesley had to fly back to his assignment. We’re sure that in years to come Pyper will look back at these photos and appreciate the sacrifice her mom and dad had made.

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