Pregnancy is a time full of decision making and each one seems more important than the last. How will you decorate the baby room? Who will watch your child if you return to work? Where will you give birth? Do you want medication available during birth? Labor and delivery alone creates at least 100 questions you never knew you would have to answer and its up to you to spend time reflecting on what is best for your specific needs. I will tell you though, there is one decision I made for each of my three births that I have never regretted. The decision to have a photographer capture my birth.
Okay, be honest..who is picturing gory pictures of body parts nobody should ever see let alone snap pictures of? You aren’t alone. When I was pregnant with my first in 2011, Ashley Nuzum of Nuzum Photo approached me. She had photographed my engagement, my wedding, and my maternity photos and what had started as a strictly business relationship had become an unexpected friendship. That’s what happens when you are passionate about your business I would think. She wanted to know if I would be interested in birth photography. Let me say, it gave me quite the pause.
I wasn’t sure I wanted to add someone else to the delivery room. I wasn’t sure what kind of photos might come out of that adventure. I needed to think about it. I looked at the photos Ashley had taken for us over the past year or so, all of them meaningful and tasteful. I thought about the photos my husband takes (or lack thereof). I decided that this was a moment I would be interested in seeing on film. So, with no idea what exactly I was getting into (and Ashley got more than her share of involvement when she became my impromptu doula that first birth – having already had 3 kids of her own) I agreed.
This is a glimpse of what I got..
Baby Number Two
In 2014 we were preparing to welcome baby number two. My birth in 2011 was a first for me and a first for Ashley but by this point she had started to get on quite the roll because these photos are ones you never stop cherishing as a parent. I was quick to get her on board for the arrival of my second child. The plan is you go into labor, you get settled at the hospital and shoot your photographer a text to let them know things are getting revved up, and then when you know you are getting close you give another heads up and before you know it Ashley is there, a quiet presence in the background capturing moments you never want to forget. That’s how it is SUPPOSED to go..until they announce a week before your due date that the baby is breech and you need a C-Section. *sigh*
I got in touch with Ashley. What were my options? She said she would come to the hospital during the c-section and be in my room ready to take pictures as soon as we got back there. I was so nervous about this whole day and the surgery I could barely think straight but I knew I wanted her and her camera there. Somehow by the grace of God as we were wheeling in for surgery, Ashley handed my husband her camera. The doctor saw how big it was and invited her into the surgery room! I can’t promise that every doctor or hospital would allow this but Ashley was getting well known on the delivery floor and the staff at Methodist Hospital in Des Moines are amazing. Again Ashley did not disappoint…
And then you have my favorite photo OF ALL TIME..
I didn’t need any convincing with my third delivery that photos would be taken. I knew in my heart that these photos were ones that I needed. One of my first requests at my pregnancy appointments was that I be allowed to have my photographer present. I’m so glad because I got one of the most meaningful pictures I have ever had taken!
When my third was born the hospital had changed some of their c-section practices for the better. As soon as my child was delivered the curtain between us was dropped and this..was the moment I first touched my sweet third daughter…
These photos are ones that I can’t look out without feeling a tear in my typically non-sentimental eye. These are the babies I never want to forget bringing into this world. This decision to have these moments documented was the BEST decision I made about my labor and delivery.
For the record, I receive no compensation from the photographer for mentioning her in this post. She simply is someone who has recorded all the important moments in our life and who I endorse because her work takes my breath away every time. If you are looking to have photos taken – especially birth photos – please consider getting in touch with her at http://www.nuzumphoto.com.
What was your best Labor and Delivery decision??!