When Sara first e-mailed me, I could tell immediately that she had it together - she knew what she wanted, and was putting in the effort to make it so. She and her husband Evan wanted their story documented for reasons close to their hearts - the love between them is a truly a joy to witness. When we met before the big day, they were sitting a mere foot from each other, and still they were smiling and blowing kisses through the air towards one another. As their photographer, I was pretty stoked at about every level. I crave that connection and it's what I am drawn to most about birth photography. Most people I've talked to about what I do expect the moment of birth to be the climax, and maybe for some it is.. But not for me. I relish in the details, the moments of connection, and all the strength and love throughout labor and delivery. I love watching dad step up to the plate as he supports his beautiful wife while she's doing one of the most amazing things on earth. I love watching mom wrangle all the strength within, and still somehow exude an air of loveliness throughout. I've never seen love as potent than moments after birth when each parent lays eyes on their babe for the first time, and also when mom and dad look into each others eyes with pride and gratefulness. It's amazing to witness, and fulfilling to shoot.
So when I heard from Sara that their birth plan was being thrown to the wind for reasons I won't go into here - I was worried. I was worried for her, and looking back - I think I mourned for the experience they so badly wanted, and had planned so diligently for. It's heartbreaking to do everything right, and somehow still have things fall apart.
Amazingly though, while I was at home worrying, Sara and Evan were taking it all in stride. They were going with the flow, and baby stayed happy throughout a three day induction. Although I had joked with my husband about camping out in the hospital waiting room, I patiently waited until I was summoned to head over. When I arrived, Sara was at 3 cm dilation and within one hour, she was at 10cm and ready to meet her beautiful girl. Talk about good timing ;)
I can't thank the birth team at Harrison enough for all the love and care that was provided to this family during labor and delivery. I was reminded yet again, that there are no certainties in life. It just take one person to elevate a situation from so-so, to wonderful. The nurse in these photographs, Wendy, was literally the best nurse I have had the privilege to work with. Not only did she treat Sara and Evan with compassion, empathy, and respect - she welcomed their Doula (Jen Watson) and I both onto her team with open arms. I left feeling hopeful about this hospital, and for that I am grateful.