This woman is an absolutely incredible human. She is kind, selfless & giving, easy to talk to, and an amazing friend. When I miscarried 3 years ago, she was simply a woman that cared, that knew what I was going through, and sent me a beautiful card and bouquet of flowers to know that she was thinking of me in this time. I dried those flowers and still have them to this day, look at them fondly, and often. It was an honor to be asked to not only document her story through pregnancy, but to doula for her upcoming home birth as well. I truly don't know how to express, with the proper words, how happy it makes me feel to be asked into someone's birth space.
I came into her room quietly, as she was laboring so well by herself. Swaying her hips through each surge so naturally. She then took turns bouncing on the labor ball, walking around, and the double hip squeeze, which I and the midwife assistant provided for her. When the contractions came harder, she got into her own bed with a peanut ball, held her husband close, and eased through the transition phase like a total champ.
Before we knew it, she was feeling that urge to push, and letting her body take over...
James came into this world already so incredibly loved and adored, especially by his proud big sister, who had stayed for the delivery and was in complete awe the entire time...she couldn't wipe a smile off her face after he was born (but let's be honest: neither could mama & papa, and I don't blame them)! The admiration stage...the moments right after the baby is born when they are cozy on mom's chest, looking up and connecting with their family...seemed to last a lifetime, which was heartwarming to watch.
Mom was able to latch him right away, the placenta delivered, and sutures administered (all while listening to Jim Gaffigan's Mr. Universe '4 Kids' skit. If you have a minutes for some laughs, check it out!). The midwife checked the baby's vitals on mom while she nursed him, quickly got his weight & footprint, and gave him to dad so that mama could take a nice warm shower. By the time she was out of her shower, everything was as it was before the birth, clean & tidy, plus she had a fresh, healthy meal prepared for her.
Another successful home birth, and another gorgeous addition to their already-beautiful family. Watching this family grow & become outnumbered was such a pleasure, and many tears were shed during this birth...I just hid it well behind my big camera.
Congratulations 'P' family!! Much love to you all.
Natalie Bee is a Birth Photographer and Doula, a mother of four wildlings, and coffee junkie. She captures the beauty of motherhood and birth through a passionate photojournalist approach.