Brisbane Birth Photographer – Oliver's Birth Story
I have to pinch myself alot to remind myself how extremely lucky I am to have such beautiful clients that allow me to capture their most treasured moments in their lives. To be in the room when their first child takes his first breath is incredible! To see the parents supporting each other through the labour journey is nothing but amazing to witness. To watch the partner not leave mums side the whole entire labour is truly the most loving thing to see. The bond that grows even stronger over those hours is something youll never forget. When Cassie and Jamie asked me to capture the birth of thier first child I was elated to say yes! When they both came over to chat all about it I could tell how excited they were and just how much this baby would be loved by his/her parents.
The day couldnt come fast enough so I could capture the most beautiful loving moments between the two of them through out the whole labour. I have to say that Jamie was the best support person I have ever seen. He did not leave Cassie's side at all the whole time. He was rubbing her back, getting her drinks, holding her hands including getting nails digging into him but he still did not even bat an eyelid at being there through every step of the way! It was so beautiful to see them be so loving towards each other especially Cassie right up to the moment she started pushing.
I can tell you its the first birth Ive been to where mum is singing to the songs on the radio when shes about 8-9cm dilated lol. Couldn't even wipe the smile off her face inbetween contractions. It was so funny as the midwifes didnt actually think she was so far into her labour as Cassie's personality was just so beautiful al the time.
I asked Cassie if she wanted to share her side of the story and she was very happy to so I have posted it below for you all to read also along with a series of images from the journey to welcoming their first baby boy Oliver Allan earthside.
"As he grows, may we always remember those tiny toes, the tiny cries and his big love.
2am, 27th May: I woke up as I have done so many nights before since finding out we could expect a brand new and tiny life to make a very big and very welcome impact on our lives. However tonight is different. I have a pain in my hips that is ebbing and flowing but it is not the pain I was expecting for when our boy decided it was time to make his grand entrance. I am suspicious but try to dismiss it and go to sleep. I do not sleep.
3am, 27th May: Still awake. I text Jamie to let him know that I might be in labour and to prepare to possibly have to come home. For something so life changing, it is the most casual exchange of messages. With the pain still mild, I am not confident it is early labour, as I was told you will know when it is time. I did not know.
12pm, 27th May: The timing between contractions slows enough for me to catch about 30 minutes sleep. At this point, I figure that we will not be meeting our son any time soon and suspect that what I have been experiencing for the morning has simply been a cruel trick of my body. I am disappointed, so desperate to meet the little man we will call Oliver Allan Hockley.
9:30pm, 27th May: Jamie has gone to sleep, anticipating another workday. Sleep continues to elude me, the pain had been increasing over the afternoon but the timing between them has been erratic. I’m thinking, “I’m going to be so mad if this isn’t labour!”
I am walking through the milder contractions and rocking my hips on all fours through the stronger ones. I am tired, nervous, excited and anxious but I am no scared. On one of the many trips to the bathroom, I pass my mucous plug. I am confident he is now coming. Surely. I message mum, dad, Mel, Dan, Kristy, Claire and our birth photographer. Their excitement is palpable through the written word and I am more determined.
12:30am, 28th May: I don’t know it now but I will meet Oliver today. The contractions have stepped it up again and I have been using a hot shower for pain relief. I am thinking about meeting my son and running out of hot water. I am running through every pain relief technique I have heard, foolishly I had believed they would have more of an effect than they did, I’m not sure if it’s really pain relief, It hurts so much but I make it through each contraction. Every time, I am stronger than before. Jamie is due to get up to go to work, but I don’t want to be alone. Not sure if I am actually ready to go to the birthing suite, I call the hospital to see if I can come in. My motives are to keep my husband with me, guilt free hot showers and to not be caught out with an in-home labour. The midwives are reluctant but let me come in for a dilation check, I am talking through my contractions and they do not think I am ready. We grab our hospital bags, head out the door and call Angie, our birth photographer. We will meet her there.
2am, 28th May: 24 hours have passed. We make it to the hospital and wait in a room to be checked. I bounce on the exercise ball in the room and kneel on the ground through contractions. I am talking and laughing with Jamie and Angie. I am 60% sure I will be sent home. Enter Stephanie. Stephanie begins the check and it takes longer than I am expecting, she is repeatedly calling me a superwoman. I am hoping for the minimum 4cm dilation indicating active labour so I can go into the birth suite, but expecting less. Surprise! 6cm! A baby will be born today.
From here the timing is a blur; I focus on my body, on my son. Stephanie, encourages using the shower for pain relief for as long as possible. I am elated that she is not pushing meds. We all talk and laugh as labour progresses and at some point, I sing along to song on the radio. I am not scared, I am excited and I am determined. I think Jamie is the star of the show. He works tirelessly to support me through contractions, applying heat packs, helping me shower and letting me claw into his arms. I somehow love him more. At some point, I leave the shower and lie in the bed with the gas.
It’s around 7am when Stephanie tells me my contractions have slowed and some intervention is best. I have known her for mere hours and yet, I trust her and I love her. I can choose between drugs or breaking my water. I consider my options; I was excited to have a birth with the waters intact but more so I did not want the drugs. My waters are broken and instantly I regret it. The pain intensifies tenfold; I become terrified and uncertain of my capabilities. The midwives are changed over and I meet two new angels charged with bringing my son into the world, Claire and Kim. I don’t think I can do this. Claire, Kim, Jamie and Angie say I can. I don’t have a choice; I do what I am told by Claire and I do what my body tells me. I will do this.
The message to push that my body sends me is overwhelming and difficult to ignore. I am begging to push but I am denied. One more contraction. No. One more contraction. No. I go through that one last contraction and I am checked. 10cm. Let’s do this. I get onto all fours, ready to push. My contractions are still unusually far apart for so late in the game and I wait for one so I can do my first push. This experience I cannot explain. I don’t know if I can feel the pain of pushing but nothing can surpass the pain of the contraction; to make the decision to push instead of cry out is a battle of the mind, but I do it. I do this innumerable times. At first I do not think I am succeeding in doing anything. I am told the head can be seen but I do not believe it. When his head crowns I know it. I don’t know if it’s because I felt it in my body or in my heart but I knew. I cannot tell you how many pushes it took to have him in my arms and I cannot describe what it felt like to touch him as he crowned or when they passed him to me but I can tell you I was feeling the epitome of happiness and relief albeit still feeling pained. He is perfect. He is pink and perfect. Pink, perfect and screaming. Overwhelmed with all possible emotions, I hug him, I try to calm him. I soak in his newness and bask in the happiness of my husband. Jamie tells me he cried when he couldn’t ease my pain and he cried when he first laid eyes on our perfect son. In this moment, I know he is an amazing husband and an even more wonderful father.
8.35am, 28th May 2015: This baby, Our Oliver Allan Hockley, is born into love, he will always be loved and we will be forever happy in our bones. We need nothing but each other and now we know success."
Thank you so much for allowing me to be there with both of you Cassie and Jamie. It was my pleasure and have loved every minute of it. I look forward to future sessions with you both and baby Oliver to watch him grow into a young man.