It’s that time. The time to go to the hospital because the baby is coming. You have been waiting months and it’s finally here. You have a plan & you’re ready to see your baby. I get a phone call and all of the sudden I am ready too. I get all giddy inside – a sudden rush of excitement comes over me as I take the drive to the hospital. Most of the time it’s too early or late to stop by Starbucks to grab some liquid pick me up. So I have to wait for the hospital’s cafeteria to open. I get some fuel and snacks that usually help me get through hours of waiting along with my mommy until crunch time.
I’ve decided to share with you all the first birth session I ever witnessed/photographed. Every time I look through the pictures I am reminded of that desire I had to fully become a motherhood photographer. I used to think, “if only someone would let me come in the delivery room with them to capture the welcoming of their baby”. Years later, here I am, not only have I been working as a birth photographer but with babies of my own. Time and willing families is all I needed to grow. Every time I go out and shoot another session, the kind where my heart is free to create and observe, I feel as if I take little step towards becoming a better observer.
In all of my time as a photographer I have never felt as privileged as this day… the day I photographed my first c-section birth. I wasn’t only allowed to be there when dad came in, but the whole time they were prepping her. Back then I was working with Woman’s Hospital on a special campaign and they hired me to document the birth of their model mom for their annual Baby Grand event, Aimee. Aimee not only was the prettiest preggo mom I had ever met but the sweetest. We had coincidentally met in the waiting room while I was photographing another birth. We talked about how we were both participating in the Baby Grand event and little did I know at the time she would be one of the moms that I would be photographing.
I had never photographed a birth where the couple had hired a doula before. Something about that profession has always caught my attention. It may well be that my family has a long time friend that is a doula herself and I have always admired her kind spirit. Coincidentally I would be working with one of her friends, Rene Johnson, owner/doula of Birth Help in Baton Rouge, LA. (For those of you that may not recognize the term doula: A doula is a trained professional that helps mothers during the labor process and ensures that they know all of the choices that are available during their delivery. They attend to a mother’s emotional and physical comfort as well as making sure things run smoothly during the birth along a doctor or midwife.) Candice and Cameron had all their plans set on meeting little Jack with Rene’s assistance.
The arrival of a little one is always cause for great joy in a family. Love, laughter, tears and excitement… it’s one of those life changing events that we will always make reference to and remember. “On the day you were born…” How does your birth story start? Have your parents ever told you the story of what it was like on your birth date? Capturing photographs of this special day is one of my favorite aspects of my photography. Doing so for Gisselle and her family was just as much of a pleasure as it was a learning experience. This was my first time photographing a birth at Mercy Hospital. Whenever I am new to the hospital I like to make sure to ask a lot of questions to my pregnant mommas who will then ask them along to their doctors or medical professionals.