Like all birth photographers our clients safety and happiness during their pregnancy and up to the lead up of their birth has them at the forefront of our mind. Those weeks when we go on call and we are checking in with each other nearly every day, its easy to form a bond and a friendship. The night of Kayla's induction i was all ready to go when i got the call. Kayla had gel that early evening and i somewhat expected a phone call during the night to come on in. But Nothing. It was then discovered mid morning that this little one had decided to turn footling breech and it wasn't safe to proceed with a vaginal delivery. I was heart broken for her, but i knew nothing had changed regarding what i was their to capture. I remember telling Darren on the phone for him to tell the staff I was going into theatre and he really needed to advocate for Kaylah. His reply to that was" They wont let you in.. its part of their policy.
Its always hard for us when it comes to theatre. There are NEVER any guarantees of being allowed in. There are ALOT of hoops we sometimes need to jump through to show staff ( usually the head of theatre ) why we need to be in there. WHY its important for the mother to have these images to reflect back on. They have the potential to heal a broken Mother
After alot of advocating to many staff It was literally only minutes before the operation when i was given the OK. The theater manager knew and understood all my reasons why. Why i had to be in there.
No matter the type of birth a woman has, she will never forget the day her baby was born, nor the way she felt during the moments of labour and of course the moment she laid eyes on her baby for the first time.
She may forget the tiny details, the names and faces of the midwives that came in and out of her room, the words of support and encouragement.
A mum will not forget the feeling of absolute joy and empowerment or the feeling of shock, grief or feeling broken.
As long as baby is healthy then at times the feelings of the mother are dismissed... ........
While a caesarean may be a “routine procedure” that is done day in and day out all over the world, for a mother and father is is so much more.
When i typed in caesarian into google this is what came up first on my list "A Caesarian also called Cesarean section, C-section. an operation by which a fetus is taken from the uterus by cutting through the walls of the abdomen and uterus."
That description to me is just so unjustified to not only the Mother who has to go through this major procedure but to the Fathers and Partners too.. whom are their to support their wives/partners through this ordeal.. especially if its not one that was planned.
Mothers are at times made to feel like they have done something wrong, or their bodies have failed them .... Like they are somehow less woman because they couldn't give birth "naturally" , causing mothers to grieve the loss of a natural childbirth. To grieve about the way she felt and feels long after.
Mothers matter. Their feelings and stories matter. Birth is more than a healthy baby. These mothers should be congratulated the same as every other Mother that has "birthed" their baby. The birth of your baby is a monumental, life-changing day.
This is the birth story of Harper.
“After being induced the night before I was eagerly waiting for the doctor to break my waters and to meet our baby. They did a quick examination and we discovered our baby was a footling breach. I needed a caesarian. I was devastated.
All I ever wanted was to experience labour and to birth my baby as naturally as possible. I wanted that moment captured. The moment I could feel our child enter the world after nine long months of waiting. They had never allowed photography into theatre where I was birthing but that all changed because of Alissa. She was determined to capture our birth story and her passion was felt by all involved in our care. The love and support she showed me as a client was exactly what I needed. She reminded me that every birth story is unique and may not always go to plan, but that my safety and the safety of our baby was all that mattered.
I love the images she captured in the theatre room and I am grateful that I had Alissa advocating for me that day. If it wasn’t for this amazing woman I would of never of had our daughters birth photographed and my feelings surrounding her birth would not be full of the positivity that I now have about having an unplanned c section.