The evening of June 5th 2012 will remain forever a part of my memory as one of my greatest experiences. I had the greatest honour of being asked to photograph/ support my oldest friend through her labour and birth of her second baby. To be honest I had no words to describe how much that meant to me.
Bridget called me at 10pm, June 4th to let me know her waters had broken and to get the labour plan into action in case it all happened that night. I called my miss two minder and I hopped into bed at 11:15pm to wait… I was SO excited, but I must have drifted off to sleep as it was soon midnight and I was woken to the most exciting message on my phone.
“Jake here, we’re heading to hospital in twenty minutes”
On the wild stormy and windy night, I pottered towards the hospital full of emotions. Excitement, anticipation, terror, nerves, joy and pride.
I met Bridget and Jake at the hospital entry and helped to carry anything I could. Jake and I had a few giggles on the way up the stairs – Bridget didn’t want the lift. My friend of 100 years was in the labour zone and hiking her way up three storeys of stairs.
Breathing away, concentrating and silently, calmly taking each wave as it came and breezed through it. She went straight through the delivery reception area concentrating, mumbling to herself and headed to her delivery room.
I couldn’t help but laugh at the looks on other soon to be parents faces- they were so confused by her manner. No yelling, no screaming or climbing walls. Just deep long breaths. For anyone terrified of birth, this would be a birth to change your mind.
She was simply amazing to be around.
When I pottered in the room a few steps behind, I did a little happy dance in the corner (I think the happy gas might have leaked a little) and got to work on my camera. I looked over to see Bridget looking asleep through another contraction and Jake gently rubbing her hand and kissing her head.
As the following hour progressed, I took a step backwards and watched with awe. This gorgeous mum showed gracefulness in her determination and pure grit. My bestie was surfing those labour waves like a pro- I was a little extra proud to know her.
I snuck around to be next to her head and was allowed to help support the final stage of delivery. I felt in some small way that I was finally able to show my love of our friendship by being there and just encouraging her. Reminding her to relax, keep breathing and how amazing she is.
She had me in tears a couple of times out of pride and amazement. I knew she was strong mentally and physically, but tonight she blew me away.
Within the hour of arriving at the hospital, Bridget had successfully added a gorgeous baby boy to her brood. Ewan John Chalmers had been welcomed into the world in peace and calmness. To show his little personality off from the start, he had a quick squawk to announce his arrival and fell straight back to sleep. Nearly half an hour later he woke to have a look at his new surroundings and opened his eyes for the first time.
With big brother (Mr 2) waiting at home, they headed home later that day to an ecstatic Mr 2. I know he will be an amazing big brother to Ewan.
I cannot express to you both EVER how much I appreciate the experience, the friendship but most of all the love you share everyday with me and my family.
If you could pick your family, Bridget, you’d be my twin.
Congratulations to you all, I can not wait to watch your little brood as they grow and develop into gorgeous young men.
Love you forever,