birth story

Birth

Eliot Says Hello | A Birth Story | Milk And Hannah | Columbus Birth Photographer

When I met Sasha and Corey for the first time, I stayed long and we talked much.
Birth, politics, cats, crime, philosophy, books, weddings, dentistry, college, real estate...
 It was dark when I left, and my heart was happy. 
We were a really good fit for a client-photographer relationship.
And as, like, friends.

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Sasha was sitting at 40 weeks and 2 days when I got a text message one Friday night at 9:23 PM. 
Two lovers had spent their afternoons at the Ohio State Fair walking and eating and not riding rides (because pregnant), and she was feeling pressure and pain that were different than the Braxton Hicks she'd been experiencing. She said she'd start timing them and circle back with me.

A 2:39 AM check-in reveals the contractions are consistent- but not so painful that she's ready to head into the hospital- and that she was resting in between.
Perfect.
I let her know that I'd check in with her in the morning.

8:26 AM: 

 
 

D E A R   S A S H A  :

You are an incredibly determined, loyal, loving, hilarious, glorious, cool as a cucumber woman
snd I want to be you when I grow up.
Thank you for inviting me into your sacred space. For allowing me the honor of documenting it. 
Eliot is lucky to have you as Mama, Corey is lucky to have you as his teammate and partner, and I am lucky to know you, and call you friend.

All my love.

______________________

Birth Support: Sasha's Mom, and her husband, Corey.
Birthing Location: Riverside Methodist Hospital, Columbus, Ohio
 

Birth, Breastfeeding

The Birth of Elliot | Columbus Ohio Birth Photography | Milk & Hannah Photo

I walked through the doors of The Well to meet Jessica for the first time.

She had e-mailed me near the end of her pregnancy and we squeezed in a "hello-nice-to-meet-you" before a "hello-I-will-definitely-see-your-vagina-hopefully-we-like-each-other".

I arrived early, found a table in the corner and slumped into the curves of a modern wooden chair stationed across a twin of itself. I said hello to the owners, and ordered myself a dirty chai smoothie-my very favorite-while I awaited her arrival.

She walked in glowing, Her spirit was so tall, so wonderful.
She'd didn't know they served coffee, and held a near-empty Starbucks still hot and sitting in her palms. (I liked her already.) Having reached her caffeine limit for the day-she grabbed a homemade vegan chocolate peanut butter bar sitting in a basket by the register. And as she finished reading the label, we ventured back to the table to see if we were a good fit.

We so were.

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She labored quickly-mightily.

I arrived into her room right in the midst of her epidural- I excused myself to the waiting room while they finished up.

Beside the nursery a small slotted magazine rack was affixed to the wall.
The Boxcar Children squeezed in front of Time and Entertainment magazines.
I chuckled.

Her Mama and Daddy were perched on stools under the windows. Her father held in his eyes a weight of something only described as deep-deep love for his little girl

Once back in the room- her labor progressed rapidly, I began taking an account of the space around her. Accounting photographs for all the details lost while focusing on something much greater than the ticking and buzzing around her.

She was complete. She was ready. She grabbed some extra breaths and sent them to her baby.

Her mother spoke encouragement and admiration in Spanish. An intimate gift-only for the two of them- two mother's ears.

And soon enough--

an

She saw his sweet face- and he hers.

in awe of his beauty...

And as their skin meshed together under the warmth of white sheets...

They fell madly in love.

To my empowered, wonderful, kind, badass Jessica:

You are an incredible Mother.
Thank you for allowing me the honor of photographing the birth of your Elliot.

All my love.


 

Birth, Lifestyle

The Birth Photographer's Birth | Berger Hospital | Milk & Hannah Photo | Central Ohio Birth Photography

When I became pregnant for the 3rd time, it was at a crucial moment.

We were in a time of transition in life, marriage, parenting.

She was the silver lining in never-ending rain clouds. She was a sure-fire promise of hope, renewal, goodness.

On March 10th, 2016, on the 7 year anniversary of my relationship with my husband-the day we leapt like lunatics deep into love- our second daughter, my third wombfruit, Ruby was born.

I decided in my last month of pregnancy to photograph the birth with help from my birth supports, my husband and momma. I wanted a different viewpoint into birthing and loved the intimacy that could be accomplished in my birth space.

With the amazing backing of my creative husband, we brought along more gear than we did products for me and for baby. What started with high expectations of photographing the entire process really began to take shape as a different story while we filled in for one another when we were able. Drew took the camera while he had the free hands to do so. My mom took the camera when she had the free hands to do so, and I took the camera... when I could.

The last photo taken was 45 minutes before she was born.

I needed my husband and mother more during those moments than I needed those first "emerging" photos, and as a birth photographer who truly values first photos of baby, that took a lot of time to come to terms with.

Those photos are beautiful memories in my mind. Memories of my husband's hands catching our daughter and placing her on my chest. Memories of the pain and pressure of birthing. And memories of my daughter being born exactly the way I always wanted.

Here is "The Birth Photographer's Birth".

The birth story of Ruby Francine.

She is so very loved.

 

Hospital: Berger Medical Center in Circleville, Ohio

Midwife: Barb Poole

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