The day you have your baby is a day you truly want to remember forever, although the intensity of labour and birth, those moments can soon turn into a blur. Hiring a birth photographer allows you to capture those memories to keep forever, pass on to your children and even one day share with your grandchildren. Every birth is so unique, to document the greatest miracle on earth is an absolute honour to me. If you’re anything like me you’ve heard the story a hundred times of the day you were born. I personally was one of the few breech born babies at Gosford hospital. My mum birthed in front of a room full of student doctors, midwives and anyone else who could come and watch! But other than the sweet after birth moments, there isn’t a photo of me coming in hot, bum first to my own live audience?! What a sight that would have been! I don’t think we realise just how strong our mothers are until we become one ourselves, gaining a newfound appreciation for them. Maybe, just maybe, our children will have some kind of insight if they see the journey beforehand.
My births of my sons went unphotographed too, and while I remember the details, there’s nothing to show for all the hard work I did. I know for a section of my labour my husband was singing and dancing around the room, something you wouldn’t usually see him doing. Labour does strange things to people. When we got down to business my eyes were closed, I have no idea what he was doing, the look on his face or the emotions he was going through. I pushed for two hours, that’s two hours I don’t remember. I remember Darian speaking to me the whole way through, coaching me at every push, I would give anything to see it for myself now. Photos last forever, to tell your story for you and remind you of the waves and sensations of labour, birth and meeting your new little person. They show you the moment you became a mother, but they also show you the moment your greatest support becomes a father. No matter how it begins, how it progresses or how it ends it’s a day that changes your life forever and so it should be kept, forever.
With Covid lingering for a long time to come, restrictions around who can meet your baby, who can be apart of your birth and who can share those precious moments with you from nearby or across the world has become very minimal. A photograph fills this void where no one else can. Yes, your husband well and truly can take a handful of pictures, but can we really trust them with a camera? As much training as we have put into working on his photography skills I still wouldn’t trust my husband with a camera (sorry Darian!), not for a moment like this. Not to mention, you want them in the picture, you want their support at every moment, you want your child to see the part their father played too, as the photos will tell the story of the greatest day of both of your lives.
The other benefit of having a birth photographer, if you pick the right one for you they become an extra support person in your room. Whether it’s just an ear to listen, a person to talk and distract you, or someone to help in supporting you and your partner through your journey, they are there in more ways than just to take a photo. My clients have quickly become friends, even before I have stepped into their birthing space. I have been along for the journey of pregnancy, labour, birth and everything in between. I am the person they message when they go into labour. Majority of my clients have spoken to me for hours before heading into hospital, with regular updates, someone to share the burden of what comes next. However, the most common comment I get, once baby is born and the room has calmed, is that they forgot I was there in the best way possible. I’m a fly on the wall in your delivery room. I’ve even had mums ask me if I took any photos, which always makes me laugh. I am forever grateful that I get to watch mums becoming mums and their babies grow!
So, if you can, hold onto these moments, they go by so quickly. Before you know it your babies are growing before your eyes, not so little anymore. Photos are the only way we can freeze a moment in time. And babies only take their first breath once, first cuddle, first feed, first moments as a family only happen once. From your husband coaching you through contractions, to the clock on the wall, there is so much more to birth photography than the crowning of your baby. A photographer documents things that you will have no awareness of, capturing the small details and the BIG moments. Allowing you to relive that day over and over again. It’s a time that we don’t do very often, once, twice maybe three times in our entire lives but it’s never the same. These are days you want to keep forever, once in a lifetime experiences, you can never get them back.