Why birth photography?

Well, why not? If you’ve ever given birth or witnessed a birth, you know how completely incredible the experience can be. The moment you become a mother is utterly life changing. At that point, you begin to devote yourself to the well being of another. And the process your body must go through to grow said human is nothing short of miraculous. I, myself, became a mother on February 9 this year, when I gave birth to my (not so) little Penelope. I couldn’t have been more terrified. I took the classes at the birthing center and the more I learned about giving birth, the less terrified and the more excited I became.

Before I gave birth, I did some research on birth photography and found two outstanding birth photographers in the area and fell in love with their work. Every day during my pregnancy I sifted through their photos and was moved to tears by their images. They captured such raw emotion and strength that I wasn’t sure I even had yet. Ultimately, my husband and I decided we couldn’t possibly afford to hire either one of the photographers. And I couldn’t bring myself to ask them to budge on their prices.  However, looking back on the day there are already so many details that I don’t remember about the day I gave birth. I know it was sunny, I remember my midwives names, I remember what songs were playing….but how did I do? How did I handle myself?  I never got to see any images of myself and how powerful my transition into motherhood was. My body was preparing to pass another human being. I was my most terrified, ecstatic and powerful self all at once. And I don’t have a single photograph of myself in that state. Not one. Not. ONE. I, like every other mother, did what had always seemed so unfathomable to me. I gave birth. And the only pictures I have are a few that the midwife took with my camera. Since I didn’t prepare ahead of time, my camera wasn’t even set correctly. So the images are blurred. (Just like my fading memories of that day! Argh!) I kick myself every time I think about how I didn’t hire a photographer for that day. We could have come up with the money somehow. And I sincerely wish we had. My husband was my rock throughout the delivery and I couldn’t have done it without him. But how was he responding to becoming a father? I can’t remember the look on his face when he saw Penelope for the first time because I was staring at her, too! I’ll never have a picture of myself seeing her for the first time. Did I look terrified? Relieved? Exhausted? Ecstatic that I finally got to see the beautiful girl I had been growing inside of me for the last nine months? I wish I could have witnessed Penelope’s birth as an outsider, to see how quickly we became a family after hours of laboring. If you do choose to have your birth photographed, I would capture all of these moments for you. Coming soon to Laura Trebesh Photography, I will be offering birth photography services. I will capture how incredibly strong you were throughout your labor, how supportive your partner was for you, the details of the day, your room and your doctor or midwife, and finally the love overflowing out of you as you meet your child for the very first time. It’s going to be one of the greatest days of your life. I want you to remember it!

This past week I had the incredible honor of photographing my good friend’s daughter’s first few hours of life. Her labor went so quickly, that I was just minutes too late to document her birth. However, what I was able to document was incredible! There were so many emotions in the room, the outpouring of love was palpable. I witnessed a family of three become a family of four. I documented a big sister meeting her baby sister for the first time. I even photographed both girls breastfeeding at the same time! These were moments that I will never forget. And neither will they. Because I was there to document it for them. Here are a few images from that day:

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