I believe I first met April as she was getting ready to bring her 3rd baby into the world. Years earlier I had followed her and her families story via facebook about the loss of her son, CJ. When I learned she was pregnant my heart just poured out to her. A new baby can't ever replace the loss of a child, but new life is a beautiful gift. I was drawn to their story and was inspired to reach out. I contacted April just one short month before her due date to offer my services to her. She happily accepted. I was so happy because I truly believe I attend every birth I'm meant to. A few days before her due date she contacted me in the morning to let me know she was in labor. Her labor picked up so quickly I nearly didn't make it! Jackson Connor was born on a beautiful June afternoon at the Concord Birth Center.
Go to www.rememberingcj.com learn more about April, her family, and the wonderful foundation they started to help families after the loss of a child.
Early Wednesday morning I get the text "It's baby day!" Her water had broken and light cramping had begun. I was so excited to be able to attend the birth of my sweet friend and former neighbor. I was so excited for her to be able to birth at Concord Birth Center after having to transfer with her daughter who arrived too early for midwives to be able to deliver. She stopped by the River Guild so to say hi while we had our weekly playgroup. She went off to walk herself into labor at a local park. The next I heard from them was "Kate thinks Caitie's in transition" and off I went! I showed up not too long before she was ready to push.
Waiting for her brother to arrive.
Looking up at her daughter moments before her son was born. When I showed her these she didn't remember or believe she could have had such a smile while in labor. Birth is SO amazing. Such a range of emotions.
It's been so long since I've been able to post a blog! I'm excited to jump back into it with a sweet newborn for you!
This is 11 day old Hadley. We started off our session in a less than sleepy mood. But she had the cutest little grump face for our first set up.
After some mama milk to top her off she was finally a little more sleepy. She liked being swaddled.
Her big brother got some mama snuggles in while I was snapping a few photos.
These little guys were the best big brothers! Lots of kisses for little sister.
I started off really liking lifestyle newborn sessions. But now I LOVE a good combination of setting up a really nice posed newborn photo and snapping sweet moments in between set ups. Everyone should have a little of both!
Just as I was about to pack everything up we noticed that Hadley had fallen into a deep sleep. So I took my camera back out and captured some of my most favorite photos of this whole session!
Happy Fall Everyone!
September marks 4 years since I took my first doula training and 3 years since I attended my first birth! I want to give away a Newborn Session to celebrate!
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I have photographed this little lady and her family many times now. I'm finally excited to share some photos from her newborn session! She was not sleepy for me at all!
Newborn sessions are unique to each family/baby and casual. Nursing/feeding breaks are always welcome and encouraged! There is no pressure as I know newborns are unpredictable. Some sessions are more posed and some are more about just capturing real life moments. I love both types of photography!
I have been incredibly lucky to be part of Ada's journey. Ashley and Andy are amazing parents. They not only have patience, creativity, and passion in everyday parenting, they take on challenges with grace and comedic relief.
They have allowed me to share their whole experience from finding a new provider who can support a breech birth, versions (see Part One), to their labor and delivery. The pictures shown are both beautiful and graphic in showing a breech birth up close and personal.
Ashley's water broke around 6pm on Wednesday evening. Her previous labors started the same way with contractions following a few hours later. So we all headed to the hospital because it was an hour away and she wanted to get comfortable before labor really started.
I arrived around 9pm and we were all pretty excitable. Ashley's wonderful midwife Kate instructed us all to sleep so we could be rested for when she really needed our support.
The next morning was the time to get active in trying to encourage some contractions. Lots of walking, yoga, squats, nipple stimulation, resting, red raspberry leaf tea, more walking. We tried the rebozo, the miles curcuit, and more walking. All of these things several times and nothing seemed to get things moving.
After nearly 27 hours after her water had broken they decided to encourage some contractions by starting with the very lowest dose of pitocin. It really did the trick and she labored beautifully.
She told us she was in transition. She laid down to rest. The birthing stool was set up. That's where she said she would like to push her baby out. And soon she was ready. "I have to push." She got right up out of bed and onto the stool to push.
Again, the next photos are of a graphic vaginal birth.
Labor is hard. But it is beautiful and worth every second. The strength of this family is amazing. I am so honored to have been part of their journey.
This little ladies story is very special. She has an incredibly strong mama and powerfully supportive father. Surrounded by people who wholeheartedly believe in the natural birth process. From a homebirth midwife to the last minute addition of an OB who was experienced and supportive of a breech birth plan.
Version (medical): the manual turning of a fetus
in the uterus to make delivery easier.
Ada's birth was originally planned to be a homebirth. Her older sister was vertex and born in a hospital. Her brother was born at home and was a surprise breech delivery! Ada seemed to like the position that her brother imprinted into mom's uterus. She was cozy and not willing to budge on her own. So a version was scheduled to encourage her move head down.
Baby in breech position, happy positive mama, belly all lubed up and ready to go! Turn baby, turn!
This little lady has moves! Do you see that doctors GIANT hands? She slipped right under them. Twice. Look at how peacefully mama uses her hypnobirthing techniques.
The first version was unsuccessful. They moved her very nearly head down and she wiggled her way back to her comfy breech position. There were some moments of feeling defeated and not knowing the next step. But they never gave up! Their midwife got them in touch with a doctor who will support a breech birth about an hour away. Farther than they wanted to travel. But for the chance to deliver her baby the way she wanted to, it was worth it.
The next step was to try a version with a spinal. They would be able to work a little harder and it wouldn't be as painful to try and maneuver her to a head down position.
Sniffing some peppermint to calm her nerves. Making daddy chill out a bit too. Dad directing her to focus! Get this baby head down! This couple is literally hilarious.
In the OR ready to go!
They really put their effort in! Each time after they tried they monitored Ada's heartrate and gave her a chance to calm down a bit. She handled all of this very well! She was just a stubborn little lady who knew exactly how she wanted to make her entrance.
She was turned twice. And as soon as hands were off she flipped her cute little tushie back into mamas pelvis... TWICE! She was happily breech and that is the way she intended to be born. Mama was in good spirits though... as you can see. They had a plan!
Read about Ada's entrance into the world in PART TWO.
I recently got to meet 6 day old Adeline! She was just adorable. She was more than happy to sleep, nurse, sleep, poop, nurse, and sleep some more. It made for a very fun session! Plus her THREE big siblings were so excited to pose for me as well.
Look at these cuties! They totally posed themselves like this. Looks like someone got onto Mom's pinterest!
Niamh and I have been friends for a while now. She let me capture some beautiful moments a few months ago and is now letting me share them! Tandem nursing is hard work and so rewarding. Niamh makes it look easy and glamorous! And her girls are just adorable.
Niamh is a Mary Kay Consultant and you can check out what she's all about here!
I had the honor of shooting 11 day old Zachary's newborn photos. What a sweet little guy! He was so calm and alert! He has the best big brother that loved posing along with him (until he got too loud!) He is my first newborn that I've gotten to work with. I look forward to a lot more practice with newborns in the upcoming months. Including the possibility of learning from a really. really great local newborn photographer! Enjoy!