Eliza Grace- a photographic birth story

19 Feb

Eliza’s birth was quite a whirlwind! You can read the full story of her birth here, but this is the story in photographs. A special thank you to Joy Crampton at San Antonio Birth Photography and to my best friend, Catherine Esser, for these special photos of our sweet Eliza’s arrival!

40 week bump pic. 40 weeks came and went…
At our 40 week appointment (which was officially at 40 weeks, 4 days). My water had broken the night before, but I hadn’t had any contractions yet, so we went in for our normal checkup. We had to do a non-stress test to make sure everything was okay with the baby. Everything looked good, so we went home to wait for things to start moving.
A full day and a half after my water had broken, we inflated the birthing pool and waited. I had had a few contractions.
Out for a walk (in my jammies, lol)! Trying to get things moving and enjoy the beautiful day!
Here we are curb-walking through a contraction. They picked up in frequency and intensity while we were out. I left our house in early labor, but definitely transitioned to active labor while we were out! (in a mere 20 minutes-time)

Hitting another contraction and taking our very last bump pic!

Everyone waiting at the house while I went on my walk. Daddy holding our baby, who wouldn’t be our baby much longer!
Everyone laughing after we walked in the door. “Go for a walk, they said… it will be fun, they said.”
That first contraction after walking in the door that was waaaay more intense. (Transition time!)
Shelby helping me breathe through it.
One contraction later and it dropped me to the floor. She was crowning here- poor Shelby was scrambling through all the birthing supplies trying to find what she needed.
Catherine trying to comfort me.
“Trent, assume the position” aka “Get ready to catch your baby!”
Sweet words of encouragement from a dear friend. This was as I was mentally wrestling with (and letting go of) my expectation to give birth in the pool (which only had about two inches of water in it). She’s letting me know that it’s okay. I’ve got this.
Daddy and doula helping baby girl ease out.
4:56pm. Eliza is born. Daddy holding her while our midwife looks on via FaceTime. Things happened so quickly that she didn’t make the birth.
Drying her off and waiting for her to cry.
Whew. Taking a moment to breathe while waiting to see my baby for the first time.
Those lungs work!
My mother-in-law became the official “timekeeper” for the birth since Shelby was the only one there. Eliza’s time of birth and first cry.
The umbilical cord was still attached (the placenta was delivered later), so getting turned around to hold my baby took a little fandangling, but this was the first time I got to see or hold her! Such an intense flood of emotions!

Getting acquainted with our sweet girl.

This photograph is particularly special because within minutes of her birth, she reached up and grabbed my necklace. It was a gift from my dear grandmother, who passed a few years ago (right before Levi was born). It was like a sweet hug from heaven.
“Good job, momma! You did it.”
Midwife on phone, “Did anyone check to make sure it’s a girl?” Me- double checking. “Yep! It’s a girl!”
My midwife Nikki, still on FaceTime

Mommy and her sweet girl!

Hi baby!
At this point, Shelby’s assistant Vanessa arrived and Catherine brought Eliana in to meet the baby.

Nikki arrives and meets Eliza!

Replicating the look from Levi’s birth as we walked down the hallway to the bedroom. Haha! I love my midwife!

Getting all my vitals checked in the comfort of my own bed.

Sweet baby toes!

Sneaking a kiss!

A congratulatory hug between father and new (again) father.

Meanwhile the kids were still playing outside, oblivious to the fact that their baby sister was here!

Taking some time to get to know her before all the kids came in.

Skin-to-skin time with daddy.

Levi happened to wander in. He climbed up on the bed and was quite curious about everything that was going on!

Levi watched on as Nikki checked out the placenta and we took the last few photos with it still attached. It is amazing what the body can do! Women grow an entirely new ORGAN to grow their babies!

Daddy cutting the umbilical cord.

Weighing our sweet lil chunk- 8 pounds, 8 ounces of pure perfection!

At this point, the older boys wandered in as well. I honestly didn’t even think to send for them, since we were still taking care of all the details and they had been happily playing together outside. We all watched on as Nikki finished checking miss Eliza out.

The boys getting to officially meet and hold their baby sister for the first time.

So grateful for Shelby and that she’s been a part of each of our children’s stories. Particularly grateful that she was here to help deliver Eliza!

Eliza with her Nana and Popo!

What fun to have a few extra admirers! Elijah and Eliana loved Eliza. They will be such good big siblings to their baby in a few more weeks!

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Posted by on February 19, 2021 in Uncategorized


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