"I've never felt closer to God than I do when a child is about to enter this world.
It's almost as though you teeter between here and the other side of the veil."
When the call came in that it was baby time for the Howden family and that Courtney was in labor, I knew that I didn't have long to get to the hospital. I was in bed and had just fallen asleep after photographing a cesarean birth, when I heard that contractions were 'pretty unbearable' and that they were heading in to have their baby soon. When Courtney and I had our initial meeting and were getting to know one another she had said that she only labored for 3 hours with her first son. Not wanting to risk it, I jumped out of bed, brushed off the fact that I had only gotten just 1 hour of sleep, grabbed a banana and ran out the door. I arrived first and snuck in a few shots of the outside of the hospital before going inside to wait for the Howden Family. Grandma and Ryder, their son, arrived to play in the waiting room while mom went back to labor with dad in their l&d room.
Soon after arriving in her room, Courtney told her nurse that she was feeling pressure and asked if she would check her cervix. After a quick exam, her nurse announced that she was 9cm and her doctor reassured her that that could change very quickly when Courtney seemed discouraged that it wasn't yet time to push. Courtney had one more very intense contraction and exclaimed that she felt more pressure and sure enough, one strong surge was enough for Courtney to be complete and ready to push!
Not long after, mom and dad both learned together that their beautiful new baby was a BOY. Grandma and big brother joined them in welcoming little Ezra to the family and big brother was so sweet and said hello by playing peek-a-boo and snuggling up with mom and baby on the bed. Ezra had an intense and fast delivery, but it sure was wonderful to witness. Thank you for having me, Howden Family and congratulations!
"I'm so happy I had Hillarie Mae Photography come document my labor with Ezra. The pictures are so raw and real. I chose to have him without any drugs, like I did with Ryder. This time seemed so much harder for me- or maybe I just forgot. I struggled for a bit after his birth...I was cross with myself for not "handling" it as well as I felt I could have and not being as prepared for it. But then I look at these pictures and realize I did something really hard. Something that really hurt. I'm not sure there's a pain much greater (Or at least I hope never to experience anything greater). Our bodies are amazing. And I'm actually amazing. I'm so grateful for this strong and healthy body of mine. I've never felt closer to God than I do when a child is about to enter this world. It's almost as though you teeter between here and the other side of the veil. During both of my labors I remember asking out loud for help from my Heavenly Father. It was one of the hardestand best days of my life. And a day I'll remember with much more clarity thanks to these pictures."