Birth Photographer: Capturing Raw Intimate Images of Motherhood
These Raw Photos of a Mom Delivering Her Preemie Are a Reminder of How Powerful Birth Really Is
All the scariest parts of having a baby — like, you know, pushing something the size of a watermelon out of your vagina, for starters — a seem compounded when that baby decides to come six weeks early. And that's what Shannon Waters experienced she went into premature labor with her daughter Atira earlier this spring. The physician, 40, was reading a bedtime story to her six-year-old daughter when her water broke unexpectedly.
Even though Waters' birth experience didn't go exactly as planned, her birth photographer Ashley Marston was on hand to capture the entire day.
After Waters delivered Atira, the baby was quickly taken into the NICU for observation.
"I got a chance to hold her for like a minute before they asked the pediatrics team to take her and check her."
"I was worried, but I knew we were in a good hospital and she looked good when I held her. So I tried to stay calm and sat there with the physician as they were stitching me up. It was probably about half hour to 45 minutes before they asked if I wanted to go and see her."
When Waters finally did get to see her daughter in the NICU, it was incredibly emotional moment.
"I'd just gone through this extremely intense experience — my water broke around 8:30 at night, and I think the baby was born a little after 3 a.m. — and then I saw her in an isolette," Waters said. Atira was on antibiotics for the first 48 hours after her birth and stayed in the NICU for two weeks. Luckily, since then, she's been totally healthy.
Despite the unexpected nature of her delivery and the general chaos surrounding it, Waters said she's grateful she has photos to remember this moment in her daughter's life.
"Even telling this story now, four months later, the intensity of the experience has faded a little bit," Waters toldHuffPo. "But when I look at these photos, I'm immediately back there. It's empowering to see these and know that I did everything I could at that time to help bring our girl into the world.
Video: Raw Pics Of Mothers Helping Daughters Give Birth
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