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I Regret Not Having a Birth Photographer

A few weeks before my second daughter was born, one of my closest friends asked if I was interested in having her photograph the birth. Not only is she a dear friend, but she's also an amazing photographer. But it just seemed a little weird to me and I declined her generous offer.

Now I've spent the last two and a half years wishing I'd taken her up on it.

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1. I don't have any great photos to look back on

I've seen so many gorgeous birth photos since then and I regret that I don't have any of my own. I have a few photos my husband took at the hospital, but none of the actual delivery or first moments of my baby's life. When I look at photos that so beautifully capture the intensity of labor and the amazement of the first time you see and hold your baby, I am so envious that I don't have any to memorialize those moments in my life.

2. I was induced

My second daughter's birth was induced a week late (since my first daughter was induced a week late too, I knew this would probably happen), and the whole thing was amazingly calm and peaceful (not to mention fast—four hours from the time I walked in to the hospital until I was holding a baby in my arms). An induction makes it so easy to arrange for a birth photographer.

3. I don't know that I'll ever have another friend I feel comfortable photographing a birth for me

We've now moved across the country, so I no longer live anywhere near my friend. And I'm not very confident that I'll find another friend who I feel comfortable having in the delivery room with me and is also an incredible photographer. It's not impossible to find a good friend or a good photographer, but someone who is both? That seems pretty rare.

4. If I have another baby, my delivery might be too fast

My first daughter's birth took about eight hours. My second was four hours (and that was with an induction, which tends to be slower). With my third daughter, my water broke unexpectedly and she was born less than two hours later, too fast for an epidural or even to get to a regular delivery room—she was born in triage! With a fourth baby, I'm a little panicked I might deliver in the car. Maybe I should be more worried about having a doctor on hand for a next birth than having a photographer there.

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5. Now, even if I had another birth photographed, it wouldn't replace the ones I don't have memorialized

All three of my deliveries have been so different and totally distinct to me, so even if I did have a birth photographer for a fourth baby, it couldn't make up for the moments with those first three babies that never got captured.

Have you had a photographer present for a birth? And if not, do you regret it now?

Image via Janssen Bradshaw

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