On a warm summers day last year little Elora Grace made her entrance into the world. Photographing a birth had been on my list for a while and I was delighted when Sarah got in touch with me. Home births are increasing in popularity and lot of women are considering home births now as an alternative to going through the hospital system.
Getting to see a new human enter the world is absolutely incredible. Having had two C sections myself, I had never witnessed an unmedicated birth. A few weeks previous to Elora's arrival we throught she was going to make an early entrance- I ended up staying in their house for a couple of days, as we waited to see what would happen next.
Over those couple of days I got to know everyone a bit better. They say it takes a village to raise a child, and I believe this is absolutely true. Mark looked after the children while also working and Sarah's mum would arrive with the most amazing home cooked food for everyone. A friend came over and took the children out for the day too.
What struck me most about it all was just how family life continued all around, like the most natural thing in the world- it was all so relaxed. I got to take some gorgeous lifestyle photos of the family and even got to see them do a belly casting, which of course was a family affair! And I got to buy things from the Enything shop run by Anna which as the name suggests, sold anything from soaps to hot chocolates!
When baby Elora arrived, all of the children came into the bathroom where she was born in a pool, and they all gathered around taking photos and even little Isaac was bringing her gifts of teddies and balls, it was adorable.
Gail from Private Midwives was there all day to oversee the birth, she had actually delivered Isaac a couple of years previously, and it was lovely to see the bond between them too. I aimed to capture all the lovely details of what was happening around too, Sarah had handmade the tie for the umbilical cord and Anna got to cut the cord with Gail's help.
There was a gift for all of the children to give their little sister when she arrived, and as they didn't know at that stage whether they were having a boy or girl they had stones with babies names written on them, one for a girl and one for a boy, which one of was unwrapped after she was born.
The excitement was magical!
Birth photography is really becoming more popular as the awareness grows that this is a once in a lifetime opportunity to document it. There is a respectful, artistic way to take beautiful, emotion filled images of this life changing experience. If you are considering this then I'd love to hear from you!
You can see more images of this incredible birth story here.