When Sarah first emailed me about shooting her son’s birth, I knew exactly who she was and began feeling nervous/excited. Sarah is a wonderful family photographer here in Birmingham, and whenever I shoot for a fellow photographer, there’s all kinds of butterflies in my stomach. Usually they can tell what kind of shot you’re going for, what the light is looking like, what your needs are…it’s like you’re both working at the same time. So when we finally met and talked over the details of Cas’s birth, I was delighted to not only make a new friend, but also because she placed her total and complete trust in my process. “I trust you” is music to any photographer’s ears.
Her due date hovered right around Thanksgiving and the Iron Bowl, but luckily baby Cas let us all have a birth-free holiday weekend. After experiencing a fast labor and delivery with her first son, Garner, we were all expecting an even faster second delivery. The day of induction came and all was going accordingly as I made my way to Grandview Medical Center around mid-afternoon. The afternoon light poured into the delivery room and we watched as cars made their way down 280 on the drive home. Contractions came and went, family came in for one finally hug and encouraging word, and as the sun was setting, Sarah could feel the pressure of her contractions growing. It wasn’t hard to figure out that this baby boy was close to being born. She took on those waves of pressure beautifully.
As she began to push, I squeezed myself behind her bed and stood beside her wonderful husband, Charlie. As I shot with each push, I was shocked by how quickly this baby was coming. FOUR fast minutes went by and Sarah and Charlie’s precious boy was here! We were all prepared for a fast labor, but the delivery was really the showstopper. Charlie’s reaction was a mixture of happiness and comedy (make sure you check out his look back at the camera). Sarah’s reaction was pure happiness and relief through tears. It’s one of my favorite birth reactions I’ve witnessed and I’m so thankful to have been present for Cas’s birth. Cas proved early to be a very “chill” baby; not too concerned with being weighed or measured and latched easily for his first feeding. Let’s hear it for those laid back babies!
After some weighing, nursing, cuddling, and diaper changing, it was time for big brother, Garner, to meet his baby. Garner raced down the hospital halls wearing his “Super Big Bro” cape, ready to hold his brother. Older siblings coming to meet baby can be tricky because there can be so much to take in all at once. Mom is hooked up to an IV, there’s lots of extra people in the room, the baby could be crying…so you can’t blame them for falling silent or showing a hint of jealousy. Garner was an absolute champ! He immediately talked to the baby, gave Cas a gift, and cuddled with Charlie and Sarah while he talked about their new family of 4. It was a perfect birth to photograph and I’m thrilled for this precious family.