I thought I might have a friend present to take pictures of baby # 3s birth. That seemed to make the most sense. Then it happened...I got two offers from photographers who wanted to take the photos. Both were new on the birth scene so it'd be experience in return for professional looking photos of my baby's birth. It got me thinking. Did I want another person I don't know well present? Would they be a distraction? Would I be okay with wearing a top? --serious question since I didn't share my daughter's freshly born photos that showed a little boob.
After talking to friends and thinking about it I finally decided I'd give it a go. I became even more comfortable with the idea after supporting Sophia (of Three Plus Studio Photography) during her own water birth. When I saw the photos her husband captured I knew she was the one for the job. She not only was familar with the sensations of birth herself, but she could draw on her husband's experience with lighting, equipment, and angles which put me at ease even more.
When the big day came my labor took on a very different pattern. Most of the evening we hung out like any other night since my labor was so mild and sporadic. Then when things kicked into to full force my awareness to what was going on around me went out the window. I didn't even realize Sophia was there taking pictures! You can read the full story here.
Once my team had cleaned up and gone I noticed that my body felt over heated. We discovered I had a fever which spiked from 101 to 104, and it continued to go up and down like that the entire day. This totally wreaked havoc on my body and ability to nurture and bond with my baby in the first week. I longed to see the photos Sophia took since my memory of it all was so hazy given the rocky recovery.
When I got the photos back I wasn't let down. Sophia captured some incredible, amazing moments. Through these photos I saw the fun we had. I got to see my strength during the times where I thought I was losing it. I got to see the love that permeated each moment she captured.
Most importantly I got to relive the moments all over again which was nice considering all that happened after the fact. I never really got my babymoon and these photos helped me move on from that.
I now see what is so special about birth photography. You get to see the raw moments instead of what gets imprinted by the mind as a result of our judgements and gained/lost expectations. Which is nice considering how sneaky the mind can be with making us doubt and be hard on ourselves.
Here's a slideshow I put together of all the pregnancy, birth, and postpartum photos that Three Plus Studio Photography took. I hope you enjoy the photos as much as I do.