Happy Weekend, everyone!!!! I can't believe it's already the middle of February. Time is flying!
Exactly two weeks ago, literally the day after I got back from Florida, a good friend of mine called me and said "I'm at 8cm, you can come to the hospital now!"
She had been in contact with me while I was in Florida, telling me that they were going to induce her on Friday, Feb 3, 2017. Just in the nick of time for me to come back to Ohio, recharge my camera batteries and head to the hospital to shoot my first labor and delivery.
Now, these friends of mine...I have GOT to tell you about them. I love these people.
Rewind to Whitney (myself) being about 9 years old, hanging out with my Dad while he was working with his friend Dwane. I'm just hanging out, doing my thing...and then Justin comes along (I think he was like 12 or 13 years old...) Justin was cousins with Dwane's son, Jeremy. They were pretty close cousins, which was cool because I got to see the two of them pretty frequently!
Justin and I have been friends ever since that moment. He and I didn't go to the same high school, nor live in the same city most of the time, but we always stayed in contact as much as possible. He's been like my brother for almost a decade. Justin introduced me to so much music. He doesn't know it, but he had a huge impact on what I music listened to then and now! Jamiroquai? Anybody? You can thank Justin for that suggestion (and for my epic dancing skills when Jamiroquai is played). Fast-forward to the past 2-3 years. Justin moved to Columbus and met this awesome woman, Christina. On February 13, 2015, these two amazing human beings got hitched. As soon as I met Christina, I LOVED her. Her and I have bonded as great friends the past few months, especially through photography and their son, Oliver. These two are probably my favorite couple on Earth. They're perfect for one another...Christina supports Justin's music passion and she sticks by his side no matter what. I admire her. Justin always has great things to say about his wife and quite frankly, I can't blame him. He scored a needle in a haystack!
As I mentioned before, Christina and I stayed in contact about her birth plans. After asking her if I could do a newborn session, she mentioned that her sister got a session for a gift after Oliver was born...then we started talking about a Labor and Delivery session. I had never done one and I informed her of that. She and I talked about it and it was definitely up in the air. She didn't know how she felt about it, I didn't know how I felt about it...the feeling was mutual. When she called me and said "Whit, I'm 8cm. You can come to the hospital, but if there's any point in time that I'm not nice or ask you to leave, please forgive me!" I said "Woman, I'm just grateful that you're allowing me to capture such an awesome part of your life. Even if I have to leave. I respect you and I appreciate you." Hoofed it to the hospital!
Upon arrival at the Dublin Methodist Hospital, I began to feel all the feels. I got nervous. I started to get sweaty palms. You know, the weird things that happen when you're feeling out of sorts...I didn't feel this way because I was uncomfortable, I felt it because I was about to photograph a HUGE part of someone's life (three lives to be precise)...I was responsible for capturing the "in between" moments. This responsibility had me very intimidated, but I was confident that I could successfully capture this because I love these human beings and they love me too. (I'm not assuming that. They've told me! Promise!)
I stood by Justin and Christina during the Labor and Delivery of their son. I got to the hospital around 11am and Christina SLOWLY dilated to 10cm by around 4pm. She started pushing with her contractions as I stood behind her hospital bed and cheered her on. By 7:45pm, Christina had enough. She had been pushing for almost 4 hours and felt like she needed some assistance. The doctor, who was pregnant herself, was very accommodating to her wishes and at 8:03pm, Oliver James Moegling was born with a full head of hair, 10 fingers and 10 toes, healthy as can be!!!!
In 9 hours, I think I went through every positive emotion possible in the human mind. I watched Christina and Justin work together as a team to deliver their son. I watched her push, without complaint for 4 hours. I watched her face as she pushed. I watched Justin look at Christina while she laid in that bed, doing the work that it took to bring a life into this world. I watched Christina's mom hold her head up while she was pushing through her contractions. I watched Christina use the word "fudge" instead of swear words when the pushing got tough. I witnessed RAW. Raw everything. I wanted to stay out of the way as much as possible and I hope that I nailed that. The worst things for a new mom is any type of crappy distraction. I think we made it happen and I couldn't be happier for Justin and Christina. Oliver is perfect and so are they.