Tag Archives: birth

welcome baby kai!

birth is a journey, a crazy, unpredictable, wild journey!  no one can tell you how long labor will be,  when it will begin, or what the path will look like.  my midwife, bj snell, has told me several times, “if i had a crystal ball and could tell when this baby will come, i would be a rich woman!”  it’s true!  many people would pay big bucks to know this kind of info!!!  for those of us who have had the privilege of carrying our babies to full term, it’s the end that is often the most difficult!  i remember feeling so uncomfortable, not being able to sleep, only have 1 shirt that i felt decent in, and just waiting and wondering and trying to figure out… would today be the day i would meet my baby?  early on when i heard of women who scheduled c-sections without any medical need i felt so righteous and smug for my choice to go natural, but near the end i envied those women who could look at their calendar and know that on monday the 28th, an hour or so after 10:15am, they would be holding their babies!  there is little else in our life that reminds us of how little control we truly do have, than birth!  we are painfully aware of our lack of control and it is not easy to tollerate, to just ride the waves and trust that our bodies will work, our baby will come… perhaps not as early and quickly and easily as we had hoped (or maybe so!), but in the end, there is always a baby… a tiny, slippery miracle that with it’s first breath cries out, “i’m here!”…tears flow and all are in awe and nothing is ever the same!

i met pete and krista when they were pregnant with their baby boy, and looking into hiring me : )  for me, the connection was instantaneous!  and i have just LOVED the opportunity to get to know this beautiful family, through their {before baby} session we did, 21 hours of me hanging out at their place while they birthed their baby boy (see pics below), and then a {with baby} session that i still need to blog : )  plus many texts back and forth about life and photos, surfing and breastfeeding!

they had a homebirth and as you will see, their home is AMAZING!!!!  there is beauty and inspiration in every crannie of their house, but i believe it’s the beauty in their relationship that really makes this place magical.  i hope you get a glimpse of the beautiful connection that pete and krista have cultivated!  for 21 hours i photographed and laughed, drank refreshing water from wide-mouth mason jars and glass bottles, listened to stories of when krista was a little girl, looked at baby pictures, ate yummy fish tacos, witnessed many tender moments (a mother’s tears when telling her daughter how proud she was, krista’s tears during an emotional part of labor, the intensity of seeing his son for the first time, a couple clinging to each other when things were getting difficult), and all the while i sought to capture the beauty and connection that was oozing everywhere i looked.  i have never taken so many pictures!

can i be honest?  sometimes it feels awkward to bring my camera up to snap a shot of someone crying, or another tender moment.  like, what is happening is so real, so intimate… the person is being so vulnerable and trusting, dare i risk marring it with the click of my lens?  yet i tell myself, this is why i am here, to document the truest parts of this journey!  i have been invited here to do this!  heck, i have been paid to do this!  i will not shy way, but will continue to be present and engaged.  and although it can feel strange, it also is why i LOVE my job so much!  i get to be a part of one of life’s most real and raw experiences!!!  when true character arises and pretending isn’t possible any more; where it’s normal and natural to need others, and for some reason help seems a little easier to accept than it usually does.  i feel so incredibly blessed to be able to do what i do!

thank you pete and krista, for the honor of spending kai’s birthday with you (and for allowing me to share his birth story)!  what an amazing team of people you brought around you to love you and support you and walk with you through this birth journey!  you both endured and persevered so well!  and your baby boy, kai edward, is so precious… such a gracious gift from above!

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born at home at 40 weeks & 6 days gestation, after 24.5 hours of labor, 9 pounds 11 ounces, 22 inches long

 

BIRTH TEAM

midwifes: bj snell & vickie alston with beach cities midwifery and women’s heathcare

doula: cathy weinstein

first assistant: michelle snyder

 

 

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gavin scott, welcome!

this mamma & her amazing man have been two of my very best friends for the past 17 years!!!  suz and aron and i met in high school, 17 years ago and we have all come a long way!  from pimples and soccer games to kids and ministry!  we have seen each other through spiritual crisises, witnessed each other’s marriage vows, been pregnant together, cooked for each other, prayed together, shared recipes and fears and maternity clothes, and have watched and learned from each other about this crazy & wonderful thing called parenting.  but the most incredible thing that suz and aron have done for me is help me believe in love!

i remember in high school when suz would feel insecure about herself, and would wonder if she looked good enough, or was smart enough, aron would ask her to say out loud, “i am a diamond!”  so she’d whisper it.  then he’d ask her to say it louder, “i am a diamond!!!!!”  and she would say it louder!  then he woud have her yell it, as if to tell the deepest part of her soul that it was true, “I AM A DIAMOND!!!!!” and she would!!!  and it still makes me cry!

before these two, i had heard that love like this exists, and i had hoped that it did, but i had never seen it!  god gave me the gift of sitting in the front row and seeing aron love suzanne so sacrificially and unconditionally, and watching her accept and receive his love and then love in return… and i am forever changed!  not only that, but these two have supported, encouraged, pursued, initiated, given, sacrificed, cared… basically, loved me so well throughout the years, that i am able to more deeply believe that i really am loved and cared for!  what a gift from God this family is!

well, with all that to say, i was more than overjoyed to be able to photograph suz & aron’s fourth baby coming into the world!  (how blessed this little one is to be born into such a family?!)  what an amazing night that was!  the hospital room was filled with anticipation, love, and awe! see for yourself…

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