Recently my good friend asked if it was weird to see the babies whose births I’ve photographed (I’ve been at 2:3 of her births).
Absolutely! It’s still a beautiful weirdness.
I don’t have that many births under my belt where I treat a birth shoot like a routine trip to the grocery. It’s still a Birth for me. It’s an honor. Yes, it’s weird to see these babies (many I saw even before their Mommas) grow into humans. I wanna squeeze their cheeks and say, “I saw you take your first breath. I saw you grab you Poppa for the first time! I saw the second you glanced at your Momma. I saw you born, Kid.” But they’re still babies and won’t understand, so I’ll save that for the special few I’ll still know as teenagers. Because I’m sure they’ll love that…
But here’s another little nugget that I also get when I see those babies…
I leave the families when they are swimming in a high only a birth brings. The pain was forgotten and the room swells with Superhero-ness. A woman morphed into the most powerful creature on earth. She’s in awe of what she just did and her partner is brought to his knees. She just pushed a child out. Simple words for an extraordinary event. There’s a high that is solely for these women and I get to dance around in it.
When I see these women, I’m reminded of that High and I think so are they. We get to retell a story that only a few can chime in and give details. We can talk about the funny things that happened during the birth. We can talk about how fantastic the room felt. I’m part of their birth story.
Today I got a chance to see one of those babies. Her Momma and I flipped through the photos (tangible evidence of her powerful transformation). We discussed why certain ones are our favorites most times for the same reasons. I saw a familiar face that had turned from a fresh newborn into an alert beautiful baby girl. She said lovely words about my photos and we talked fondly about the Midwives. We chatted about life after the birth which allowed us to meet less as customer/client, but more as women.
We spent a good time lingering in the high she created one night in May. I hope today she remembered the night she was magnificent. Because it was the most thing beautiful to witness.
Remembering the high.