Finally, a peek at the third birth I photographed in April. Actually, it was the third within the span of a week. I don’t know if any baby could have been more highly anticipated. Eli is a dream that took years to realize, and I’m so, so happy that Mellissa and Jason now hold him in their arms. The joy and wonder and amazement in the room after Eli’s birth was more than tangible, it was infectious. I had tears in my eyes several times as I watched this family begin to get to know each other. Every baby is a miracle, but I don’t think I’ve ever seen parents who GET that as much as Mellissa and Jason early last Wednesday morning. It was beautiful.
Mellissa was due on Monday, April 23rd. I don’t give much credence to due dates, so I was surprised to be getting a phone call from Mellissa Monday evening. It wasn’t THE call, however. She told me that they had seen their doctor and had an ultrasound, and for several different reasons, the doctor had decided it would be best to schedule a Cesarean section for Wednesday morning. I could hear the disappointment in Mellissa’s voice; I knew she had been hoping to have a natural birth and experience all that has to offer. But I could also hear that she trusted her doctor and was resigned to this new reality. I jumped on board, added the C-section date and time to my calendar, and relaxed, thinking that for once there would be no surprises. Ha!
Tuesday morning Jason called me to tell me that Mellissa had started having contractions. He said they were not too intense and that the doctor thought they’d likely proceed with the scheduled C-section the next morning. I told them to enjoy their day and to of course let me know if anything changed. That evening I texted again, asking how the day had gone. Jason said the contractions had continued for most of it, though they’d stopped an hour or so ago and were just starting up again. I went to bed with my alarm set to get up and meet Mellissa and Jason at the hospital as they checked in. At 2am Jason called saying they were going to the hospital with intense contractions that were two minutes apart. I was happy to hear that Mellissa was getting to experience labor after all — a good thing for mama and for baby. Eli decided he was going to make things happen in his own way.
At 2:59, Jason told me to come to the hospital. They were proceeding with the C-section a few hours early. Jason and his mother got to witness Eli’s birth at 3:53am. I waited in the recovery room and got to photograph the beautiful after party. It was such an honor to be in the presence of so much love.
Congratulations, Mellissa and Jason. I couldn’t be happier for you and Eli.