This was a very special and very awesome birth. I feel a deep connection with this sweet Momma and love her to pieces. She has such and wonderful heart and fun spirit and that is going to make her the best mom she already is. The birth was the final transformation for Rae into motherhood. It was so sweet because she told me to text her that I made it home safely after the birth and again after their home newborn session.
This is the first birth that I was a doula for as well as the birth photographer. I do have to say sorry for the first few video clips as there was some lights in the room that were making those lines in the video and I tried a few different things before figuring out what was causing it so bare with me. One of the fun parts about being a birth photographer is the technical challenges to the craft you face when it comes to hospitals (cramped spaces and not the best lighting just to name a few).
Since Dad was playing at a football game that night and would be at the hospital till 1am (GO FALCONS!) I didn’t want Rae to be alone and smuggling her necessities into the hospital. I picked her up around noon and we grabbed a bite to eat and then got the call from the hospital saying her room was ready. We arrived at the hospital around 3:30pm and did some walking around and getting situated until the start of pitocin which was about 7pm. We had a visit from one of Rae’s best friends Amanda, who actually has some responsibility for how we got into this whole thing in the first place ;]. Amanda was Rae and Jeremy’s match maker. Amanda and Rae had a two hour long trial of trying to get Jeremy’s game to play on any device that would. So that is why you see them canoodling on an array of apple products. Unfortunately it didn’t happen but Dad was safe and made it to the hospital and we had some fun entertaining Rae with some Mad Libs.
I really never thought labor and birth could be really really fun. I mean its amazing because of what a miracle it is and all the neat moments, but one of Rae’s coping techniques was cracking jokes. I have never laughed so hard at a birth and I think it was a first and a last. There are many memorable jokes. So Rae decided to get things moving along and had her waters ruptured around 10pm. Rae believed she turned into a crazy person but she really didn’t. She was very calm, relaxed and in control. I know it might have not felt like that in the inside though.
Dad arrived on time when he said he would and that’s when things picked up a little shortly after. One of my favorite parts was when Jeremy climbed in the hospital bed with Rae (he is close to 6″9) and the nurse came in and he immediately said “I was told to do this” like he was going to get in trouble. I don’t think anyone is going to tell someone his size what to do. Parents snuggling really helps get that natural oxytocin flowing and progress things. After a little bit of that it was about 3am and Rae decided it was time to get her epidural and get some rest. Though the sleep was on and off we all got up and moving officially for the day around noon. I grabbed a quick lunch, came back in and Rae was complete.
Dr. Arona is completely awesome. She let me stand where I needed to, to get my shots, and always explained what she was doing very thoroughly to Rae and asked for consent. That made my job as a doula very easy and wish there were a lot more OB’s like her. We were also blessed with fabulous Nurses to work with as well. Sweet little Avery made her transition to earth side at 2:21pm weighing in at 7lbs 1oz and 20 inches long and mom was very happy she had a perfectly normal size head since she had been told it was going to be a big one.
I am so proud of Rae and how much of a trooper she was. So if she tells you she turned into a crazy lady while telling you her birth story, she really did not. That was just all in her head. She was strong and calm. I loved that Rae’s first words to little Avery were “Oh, I love you so much”. After spending her golden hour on momma’s chest Avery got her bath and then it was Daddy’s turn. Jeremy is so in love with his sweet girl and got to do some skin to skin time with her. Its all over his face in the photos and when he was holding her. He lovingly joked that he was going to set a 30 minute timer for Rae so they had even holding sessions. I am so thankful for this sweet family and awesome birth experience and cannot wait to see Avery grow. She made her way to some wonderful parents who love her dearly. Here are some of my favorite photos and why!
Loved Dr. Arona, and little Avery did too! You can see her smiling!