So it has been a while since my original post of “Where The Story Begins” and this is my third and final instalment of that series. (You can read the first here, and the second here). It shows the beauty of another little life entering the world. And the moment where a family of three, becomes four. And a young girl becomes a sister. Those previous stories, lead to this finite moment. It showed me the places within me I hope to reach. The dreams I’ve yet to accomplish. It looks a lot like this place…
People often ask me, what would possess me to think that women would ever want to capture images of their birth, and why do I want to do such a thing? Well the answer is quite simple really, why would I not?? There’s a beautiful quote by Laura Stavoe, that reads; “There’s a secret in our culture, and it’s not that birth is painful. It’s that women are strong.” After witnessing countless women give birth in a number of ways, I can say this to be true. Whether a home birth, a hospital birth, a “natural” birth, a caesarean; women have strengths within them, that until that moment, they have often rarely noticed. Why would you not want to show women the depth of the reserves they carry?? And that moment – that first glorious moment where little lungs fill with oxygen, and babes pink up, as though the love dancing in the room colours them in – why would you not want that written down to see for eternity? I also strongly believe that the more women see how “normal” birth is in the context of life, the less they will fear it. The less fear centred on the process of birth, the more easily birth will happen. The more peaceful and calm a birth, well who can really say how far reaching those effects may be felt. So yes, for this, and myriad of other reasons, deduced from my career spent as a midwife, I think it is important to capture the truth of birth. It’s a beautiful, emotional, and quite personal tale for a family – but it is also a universal truth that just may help shift the fear that surrounds the birth process. If there is one thing I have learned in my time as a midwife, no birth – no matter the mode of journey taken for a little life to enter the world – is easy. Birth is hard. It stretches women to the peaks and edges of themselves. But time and time again, women are able to navigate the widths and depths of their courage, their love, their compassion, their tenacity, and their womanhood. What a beautiful thing to witness. What a wonderful thing to share.
M&B, thank you for sharing your story with me, once again. A story of love, life, and strength.