***This post was originally posted on April 20th 2016***
Yesterday was the most amazing day of my photography journey to date. I photographed my first birth. I met the mama – Ashley – through a regular client, and we only met in person just over a month ago at their family/maternity session (although we’ve been in contact through Facebook since May last year). Despite being virtual strangers, she and her partner Toby took a leap – and invited me into the very personal space of their birthing room. Aside from my own four babies being born, I’ve only been present for two births – one natural delivery, and one c-section (although I didn’t go into theatre). So I knew that the invitation to capture this extremely personal experience for this couple was a huge privilege! And I seriously could not be more humbled and grateful.
We had a set date, due to a planned induction, so there was no middle-of-the-night phone call! I was able to get up in my own time, and arrive at the hospital at around 9am. Things got moving very quickly, as they do with an induction, and by 11am labour was established. The main thing that struck me about this couple was their strength and love for each other. Ashley had chosen to attempt a VBAC, because she wanted to experience everything that labour is, and she shone through the whole experience. And Toby supported her in such a beautiful, unwavering way. I was in complete awe of both of them.
As often happens in these stories, bubs had a different plan to mum, and it was decided an emergency caesarean was required. The room suddenly filled with what seemed like a cast of thousands, and Ashley was whisked away with Toby close behind (dressed in scrubs, of course!). Due to hospital policy, I wasn’t allowed into theatre – but I sent my back-up camera in for those shots to be taken by hospital staff. And they did a pretty good job too 😊. I waited with the family, and captured some shots of Michael, the soon-to-be big brother.
After what seemed like a really long time (but was only an hour or so!), the happy second-time parents emerged with their precious little bundle. Ashley was a bit spaced-out from surgery, and very tired. Toby was proud as could be, and his expressions were priceless. The family all had cuddles, and baby Eric was weighed and measured. The brothers were introduced, and Michael was not sure at all! Eric settled in for a feed and cuddle with mum, and I took that as my cue to depart. The last shots I took, on my way out, were of Toby and Michael having a much-needed catch-up and play.
Best. Day. Ever.
Now I want to do it again!!!
Beck – RJN Photography – Birth Photographer Adelaide