Luken Paul Bradley

What an exciting day this was! Mama was sent from her 40 week appointment straight to the hospital with a high leak in her water. They started her on piton and 2.5 hours later he was born! After two girls, mama was hoping for a boy and it was so exciting to hear dad announce “We got our boy!”.  What a sweet day this was.

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Liam Ryan

Liam’s mama and I have known each other for a LONG time. I’m pretty sure we took dance together when we were 5 but mainly we know each other from our good old CHCS days. I met Nick when I arrived at the hospital haha! It is so fun watching brand new parents with their minutes old baby. They were immediately in love with little Liam.

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Vera Fern

Miss Vera has impeccable timing. When we set up this birth we knew that there was a very good chance I would be at the beach and would miss her birth. As it turned out, she decided to come the day before! Her mama, Bess, had a tough labor with her older sister so we were all hoping for a successful VBAC. And boy did she get it! Vera was born within 2 hours of arriving at the hospital. It was so exciting hearing how different this birth was and how empowered Bess felt afterwards. The sweetest moment was when Vera cried and her sister Maeve said, “I think she needs me”. Big sister, she will always need you. It was such a joy doing this Fresh 48 shoot. I’ve known Bess for a very long time so being asked to come document these moments was very, very special to me.

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Hank Warren

Hank was born via c-section in April. His brother’s birth was full of excitement due to an emergency c-section. Hank’s was much more laid back. The section was planned and we all had the dates written in our calendars. I arrived at the hospital just a few minutes before he was born. Tori had asked ahead of time if I would be allowed in the operating room and standard procedure said no. Once she had some time to recover I headed back to get photos of Hank meeting all of his family. These are a few of my favorites from the day!

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The Birth In Photos

After nearly 6 months it is probably time to share my birth photos. If you want to read the story you can do that here. I think these speak for themselves. Also, I narrowed this down from around 200 photos so just know there are a lot more of these. I’m so glad we had a photographer. While I fully understand it is not for everyone, I don’t regret it for one second. My photographer was Fallon Curry and she was awesome. Click HERE to check her out!

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The Birth Story

This is a birth story so just know it will contain things that pertain to birth….it’s also a tad on the long side.

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Well it was a good thing I posted my 40 week update on my due date because this girl didn’t make us wait too much longer! Friday, July 10, Joe and I went out for sushi, a walk around Cabela’s and Target, and then home for a movie. Saturday, the 11th, my mom came and helped clean my house. Then we went to the mall with my friend Kim and her girls to do some walking. All that did was tire me out! I woke up a few times in the night not feeling very well. After a few trips to the bathroom I did remember that your body cleaning itself out can be a sign that labor is coming. I figured I just ate too much Chick-Fil-A and pizza that day! I woke up Sunday morning, the 12th,  still feeling pretty off and just not very good. I had plans to eat lunch with Kim and her girls and I needed to go to the grocery store. I almost canceled but went anyway. It was so hot outside and getting groceries was miserable. I got home, got them put away and laid down to take a nap. This is where the fun begins…

I woke up around 4:15 when I felt something pop. It was the strangest feeling. I immediately sat up and felt a small gush of fluid. I wasn’t for sure that it was my water but I was fairly certain I hadn’t peed my pants. I wasn’t having any contractions so we decided to just wait a little bit and see what happened. We went ahead and gathered the last minute items and called our family to let them know that we thought we were having a baby! After about an hour and a half the contractions started. Initially, they weren’t too bad and breathing through them was going ok. We watched 4 episodes of Gilmore Girls before the tv needed to be turned off. I also ate a piece of pizza and a granola bar (BIG MISTAKE).

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Around 9:30 we decided we were ready to head in. My contractions were about 3 minutes apart and lasting a minute long. The short 10 minute drive to the hospital felt a lot longer than it really was. We got to the hospital, got all checked in, and admitted to triage. They had to make sure it was really my water that had broken (it was) and needed to monitory my contractions and have us answer a bunch of questions before moving me to my room. At this point I was only a 3 and as soon as they had me lay down those contractions got so much worse. As we were moving to the labor and delivery room I told Joe that I wasn’t sure if I could do it. I knew I had a long ways to go still. He reminded me that I could do this and that he wasn’t supposed to let me change my mind. We got settled in the room and I asked if I could get up and move around. The baby’s heart rate was deceling a little with some of the contractions so they needed me on the monitor. Around 11:30 I looked at Joe and said “Please, I can’t do this. It’s too much.” And that is how I ended up getting the epidural. He was very quick to make sure that I wasn’t going to beat myself up later for getting one and I assured him that I would not regret it. (I don’t, not for one second) It took about 30 minutes and the anesthesiologist came in. He was 76 years old, has been an anesthesiologist for 40 years, and has done around 3,000 epidurals. The man was amazing. He was so fast and I really didn’t feel a thing. Before I knew it, my belly was numb and all I could feel was some pressure with big contractions. At this point I was a 5 and 90% effaced.

Once you get an epidural, they have you lay down and on your side. This is great except that it meant my heart burn was aggravated by laying mostly flat. The nurse brought me some Maalox and to sleep I went. About 2 hours later I woke up and knew I was going to be sick. I couldn’t even reach for the bucket fast enough so I threw up all over myself, the sheets, and the pillow case. Those sweet nurses came in right away and got me all cleaned up. They checked me again and I was an 8-9! We were getting so close! I got a little more sleep and then it was time to start pushing. My epidural was working great. I couldn’t feel the contraction but I could feel the pressure intensify so I knew she was moving down and it also helped me to know where to push. After just a few contractions my nurse said it was time to call the Dr. About 10 minutes later he was there. He let me know that her heart rate was deceling with each contraction still and we needed to get her out. He said if I wasn’t pushing effectively on the next contraction then we would need to consider assistance – basically the vacuum. That was all it took for me to really push with everything I had. One contraction later I was definitely feeling the ring of fire. Holy smokes, that is some serious burn and I was pretty numb! The next contraction we had a baby! I only pushed for 20 minutes. Rebecca Ann was born at 6:05 AM on July 13, 2015.

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Joe cut the cord and she was placed on my chest. She had a pretty short cord which explains why she was having a little trouble during those last contractions. We spent almost 2 hours with her doing skin-to-skin and breastfeeding. After that, she went to the nursery with Joe and he gave her a bath and got her dressed. They did the eye ointment, vitamin K shot and the Hepatitis shot. These pictures are some of my favorites. Joe is beaming!IMG_0781

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I’ve seen some of my birth photographer’s photos and they are amazing, I can’t wait to share them!

 

Wyatt Raymond Rees

Saturday, September 27 was a great day. The weather was nice, I did some birthday shopping with my mom and then came home to edit on some photos. I had eaten dinner, had Friends on in the background and was editing away when I got the text…”Heading up to the hospital, I’ve been having really strong contractions the last hour and a half. I’ll let you know if I get admitted.” I knew it was time!! I kicked into high gear, got my stuff together, changed my clothes and called my mom who was going with me. An hour later I got the text that said, “Being admitted!” which was quickly followed by “Dilated to 6, my water just broke”. I was in the car and on the road! I stopped in Joplin to pick up my mom and on to Springfield we went. By the time we got there Tori was an 8 and little man’s heart rate was dropping during contractions. Right after I walked in the hospital Tori was moved to the operating room and they were talking about a C-Section. Garret was given scrubs and we were able to see him and pray for a few minutes before he went back to be with Tori. I wasn’t able to be in the delivery room, but I was in the room when the new family was wheeled back in. It was so very special. Here are a few (and by a few I mean a LOT) of the moments I was able to capture.WyattBlog_001 WyattBlog_002 WyattBlog_003 WyattBlog_004 WyattBlog_005 WyattBlog_006 WyattBlog_007 WyattBlog_008 WyattBlog_009 WyattBlog_011 WyattBlog_012 WyattBlog_013 WyattBlog_014 WyattBlog_015 WyattBlog_016 WyattBlog_017 WyattBlog_018 WyattBlog_020 WyattBlog_022 WyattBlog_023 WyattBlog_024 WyattBlog_026 WyattBlog_028 WyattBlog_029 WyattBlog_030 WyattBlog_031 WyattBlog_033 WyattBlog_034 WyattBlog_036 WyattBlog_037 WyattBlog_038 WyattBlog_039 WyattBlog_040 WyattBlog_041 WyattBlog_042 WyattBlog_043 WyattBlog_044 WyattBlog_045 WyattBlog_046 WyattBlog_047 WyattBlog_048 WyattBlog_049 WyattBlog_050