{Las Vegas Birth & Newborn Photographer | Kingman Birth & Newborn Photographer} The Birth of Baby Jude

This is the story of baby Jude’s birth, from my perspective.  Robin has been a dear friend of mine ever since I did her maternity and newborn pictures for her last baby.  We immediately clicked and have been friends ever since.  Robin found out she was being blessed with baby #4 when Hope was just 6 months old.  I remember how shocked, but excited she was!  We had discussed birth photography a few months ago and I offered to do it (if it happened at a convenient time…lol).  I have nine of my own children, so I was cautiously hopeful that Robin would go into labor when my husband was home so I could escape for a few hours and document Jude’s arrival into the world.

We ALL thought Robin was due late July/early August.  Her friends had been tormenting her (I’m totally guilty here as well) as the days passed and no Jude was to be seen.  Haven’t you had that baby yet?  Are you STILL pregnant?  How far over-due are you?  Poor Robin!  I should know better and keep my impatience to myself – in reality, we were all excited to meet him but I can imagine how irritating this  was being 9 months pregnant in this horrible Arizona summer heat.  Tuesday the 14th came – a few of us noticed that we hadn’t seen Robin post anything on Facebook that day.  Of course, everyone started suspecting that she MUST have given birth (or be in labor).  She secretly sent me a private message letting me know that she had been having contractions since 4am that morning, but that they were not regular and to PLEASE keep this information to myself. lol  I did, but kept pestering her for details.  I was scared to leave the house – I didn’t want to miss the phone call!  I messaged her and asked if I should take my kids to soccer practice that day, or maybe hang around closer to home instead.  She told me to go about my life, and that she was still having contractions but that they were not regular or close together at this point.  So…I did. :)  I still had that funny feeling that something exciting was getting ready to take place.

I went to bed early that night, just in case.  I set the phone on the nightstand next to my bed.  Sure enough, at about 12:15am, I got a call from Bill, Robin’s husband, that she was having contractions, and that they were about 10 minutes apart.  It still might be a while he said.  I got up, stretched, threw on some clothes, brushed my teeth, and took off with my camera bags (and speedlight that I barely know how to use) in tow.  I arrived at Bill & Robin’s house at about 1am.  She was obviously having painful contractions when I got there, and I was a little nervous about getting in the way or being an annoyance with my camera.  This was something I’d never witnessed from the outside, despite having 9 of my own children.

Robin was laboring in a birthing tub set up in the master bedroom.  It was very dark – none of the usual abundant natural light I’m used to working with.  The only light was coming from the adjacent closet.  Everything was very calm and peaceful – nothing like the hospital births I myself have had.  Total side note here, but if I ever have another baby, a home/waterbirth will be a very real consideration for me. :)

I cautiously crept into the room and took some pictures of my sweet friend in labor.  I was amazed at her calmness and ability to control what I know well is very immense pain!  Bill was standing by and applying counter-pressure on her back to help ease her contractions and helping her to breathe through them.  They really make an amazing team – it’s no surprise as they teach Bradley Natural Childbirth classes here in town. :)  Things were obviously progressing quite quickly – poor Grandma was worried that the midwife was not here yet – she had a few hour drive and was on her way still.

Laboring mother during a home waterbirth
A mother to be labors in a birthing tub
A woman in labor in a birthing tub.
These photos are some of my favorites – the calmness and presence of mind is so evident here…
A woman prepares to have her baby at home.
At this point, Robin had announced that her water had just broke.  The midwife was still on her way.  I knew she wasn’t going to make it.  I could see the baby crowning!  Bill did an AMAZING job delivering his own sweet son into the world.  Never once did his calm demeanor change – he was so level headed throughout the entire birth.

This photo is truly amazing to me – a new life enters the world.

A laboring woman and her husband prepare for a home/water birth.
Mom looks around to see her new son for the first time…
Dad catches his newborn baby in this home/water birth!
Mom meets her new baby for the first time.
Jude Thomas was born on August 15th, 2012, at 1:53am…
The time on the clock at the moment a new baby was born.
A mom snuggles her newborn son for the first time.
One of my favorite photos I’ve ever taken – and that’s saying something.  The look of pure joy, relief, exhilaration – all wrapped up into one.
The look of joy and relief washes over a new mother
A new mom gets to know her newborn baby boy.
A new mom and dad meet their baby boy for the first time.
A new mother cries tears of joy after giving birth to her new baby boy at home.
A new mother snuggles her newborn son for the first time.
A mother snuggles her son after a waterbirth at home.
A mother meets her new son for the first time after a home water birth.
A mother dries off her new baby boy after a waterbirth.
Mom gets her post-delivery glass of orange juice, and baby Jude’s umbilical cord is cut. :)
Mom and Dad get to know their precious newborn boy.
A proud father cradles his newborn son…
A proud father holds his newborn son for the first time.
A proud father and grandma hold their new baby and grandson.
I should have gotten Jude’s weight in this image, but I got his little (very cute) feet instead (the midwife arrived approximately 20 minutes after Jude did…lol).  He was 8lbs, 11oz, and 22.25″ long.  A tall boy!  This was the very last image I took before I headed home, very tired, but on an amazing high.  This was, without a doubt, one of the most amazing things I have ever witnessed.  It was such a HUGE honor to be asked to be here for this birth!  I hope that these photos will be looked back upon as the years pass and Jude grows up with great joy and wonderful memories.  Congratulations to the W. family – you guys are truly blessed and little Mr. Jude is SO lucky to be a part of your loving family.  I can’t wait to do his newborn pictures on Sunday – stay tuned for what is sure to be some incredible cuteness! <3
A brand new baby boy gets weighed after being delivered at home in an all natural waterbirth.

August 16, 2012 - 11:11 pm

Marie sant - Seriously, is there anything you can’t do? Put a camera in your hands and magic happens. I had goosebumps while I read this. What a beautiful and touching story.

August 17, 2012 - 12:01 am

Kel Ward - Absolutely amazing. These photos brought a tear to my eye.

August 17, 2012 - 12:31 am

Christine Dibble - So beautiful! Your talent amazes me! Was all of this without a flash?

August 17, 2012 - 8:57 am

Anne - These are so strong and so moving. Beautiful, just beautiful.

August 17, 2012 - 9:52 am

Robin Wilkins Sr. (Bill's Mom) - I was so proud of my new grandson, and your photos made us feel like we were all there. Tears and all. Thank You!:)

August 17, 2012 - 10:10 am

Katie Louise - Oh wow, these are incredible. I had a tear in my eye at the first photo of little Jude arriving!

August 17, 2012 - 12:57 pm

Susie Moore - Lisa, this is one of the most beautiful and moving sets I’ve ever seen! And your journaling is just wonderful, and I’m sure Robin and her husband will treasure this forever!

August 17, 2012 - 10:00 pm

April - Absolutely amazing! I can only imagine what an unforgettable experience this had to be!

August 17, 2012 - 10:39 pm

Krista McPhee - You captured the raw beauty of child birth. Your images are gorgeous.

August 18, 2012 - 4:10 am

Jessica Reischel - Oh my! I’m moved to tears. If only – I could have had my birth photographed. Welcome Jude!

August 18, 2012 - 4:28 am

celeste pavlik - WOW Lisa! Those are amazing!! I cried! So emotional and beautiful.

August 18, 2012 - 5:24 am

Laura Morita-Yeun - Oh dang, girl. Leave it to you to still get glorious lighting in a dark bedroom. These are so amazing. What a wonderful team they are! Love the emotion. Congratulations to your friend. Welcome, little guy!

August 18, 2012 - 11:50 am

Fran Barker - Such incredible images, story and people. Great job!

August 18, 2012 - 6:42 pm

Jonni - Lisa,

You did such a beautiful job capturing your friend’s birth. Amazing as always! :)

August 19, 2012 - 6:41 am

Carrie - Absolutely breathtaking!!!! Breathtaking!!!!

August 19, 2012 - 7:32 am

Shelby - What a great story and amazing photos that I’m sure will forever be cherished.

August 20, 2012 - 12:53 am

Taryn Boyd - always a dream of mine to capture something like that…jealous you did it and so beautifully!

August 20, 2012 - 6:54 pm

Kristin - These are fabulous! What a treasure and such raw emotion. LOVE!

August 22, 2012 - 2:11 am

Alison - WOW…. amazing

August 23, 2012 - 5:05 am

Lindsay Faber - Lisa I love these so much. You captured all of the details that tell the story perfectly. The emotion in all of these is palpable and now thanks to you I think I need to work on baby #2!

September 20, 2012 - 2:18 am

Deborah Turner - I felt as if I was right there. Beautiful!

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