Baby's Huntley's Dallas Home Birth
dallas home birth photography

I can't believe another one of my birth babies is already a year old!!! I was thrilled to attend the home birth of Huntley (how cute is his name) last August. As a Dallas area birth photographer I attend births in hospitals and birth centers but more and more families are choosing the comfort and freedom of home birth. This particular family had a home gym and it ended up being mama's favorite room in the house to labor and birth. 

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When I arrived this strong mama was such a champ during her contractions, trying out many positions to move her baby down and be as comfortable as possible. 

homebirth mom surrounded by support in labor

Her birth team included midwife Kasie McElhaney of Dallas Birth Center and doula Melissa Espey-Mueller of North Dallas Doula Associates. They surrounded her with hands on support as she powered through her fast and furious labor.

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parents are overjoyed to see their baby for the first time

I will seriously never get tired of parents' reaction faces, so much love and excitement. And if you didn't catch it, her sports bra says "badass", and a badass she definitly was!!!

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Those first tender moments with their new son.

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And a celebratory glass of champagne. 

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Happy Birthday sweet Huntley. I hope you and your family had a great first year.


Doula - North Dallas Doula Associates, Melissa Espey-Mueller

Midwife - Dallas Birth Center, Kasie McElhaney

A Letter to the Guy who just Became a Dad
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Hi there, new dad. Congratulations! Can you believe it? Months dreaming, planning, painting, assembling furniture, and now your baby is in your arms. 

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Not that many years ago dads stayed far away from the birth space. But not you, not anymore. You held your partner's hand, you kissed her forehead as she powered through labor. You grabbed the water bottle, the wash cloth, the chapstick. You were there every minute of the hours long process. You even tried to help fix her hair.

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You were unsure at times, as anyone would be. You might have doubted your role and what you had to offer. Despite your discomfort you stayed present. You rubbed her legs and whispered words of affirmation. I see you push through the uncertainty and continue to show up for your partner. It’s a stunning thing to witness.

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And then, there she is! You reached out as her head emerged and caught your baby. Your hands are the first thing she felt outside the womb. She will return to them again and again to find familiarity and comfort. You are a dad now.

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Your expression, it says it all. There are photos to prove it. You are melting inside as you see your baby, the one who came from you. You are the one who will see her first smiles, her first steps. You will teach him how to kick a ball, give him rides on your shoulders, wrestle him on the living room rug. You will hear all of her thoughts as she grows into a chatty toddler and you will send her off to school. It’s just the beginning of the incredible journey of fatherhood.

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The new way you look at the woman who grew and carried your baby, it’s breathtaking. She just overcame one of life’s biggest challenges and now you know she is a badass.

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I see you studying those tiny features. I notice you slide your thumb into that tiny hand. Your tender strength is on full display and it’s the most beautiful thing to see.

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Your eyes glisten with joy, your giant arms swallow up your tiny baby. 

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Welcome to the greatest journey of your life. You’re already a natural. 


Kathryn J Birth Stories is a birth photographer in Dallas, Texas. She loves photographing dads seeing their baby for the first time, it’s one of her favorite moments in each birth story.

C-Sections Can Be Gentle and Family Centered | The Reflections of a Dallas Birth Photographer
 
family centered c section birth in dallas
 

when I say all births are beautiful, I mean it. 

But I do think there are valid reasons c-sections have gotten a bad rap. They are crazy overused in some places, doctor's have been known to push them just for convenience, but mostly they don't necessarily consider mom's experience as an important priority. A healthy mom and baby shouldn't be the only goal. How about we set the bar a little higher and strive for happiness too :) 

After witnessing births all over the DFW area I am happy to say some hospitals are changing for the better. 

Places like Baylor University Medical Center, Texas Health Presbyterian Dallas and Texas Health Harris Methodist Hospital Fort Worth are providing incredible, gentle, family centered c sections. They are listening to families and the results are more positive birth outcomes. 

Some of the things I'm seeing in more and more c section birth spaces are:

Having additional support (photographer, doula)

Music

Low lights

Lowered or clear curtain

Delayed cord clamping

Skin to skin

 

 
 The moment of birth is not something women have historically witnessed when they have a c-section birth, now with a clear or lowered drape more and more families are able to witness their babies first moments. 

The moment of birth is not something women have historically witnessed when they have a c-section birth, now with a clear or lowered drape more and more families are able to witness their babies first moments. 

 

I just love knowing the belly birth process is starting to include more of these mom and family-centered options.

Its amazing how simple little adjustments can make a families birth experience more positive. Allowing an additional support person, like a birth photographer, can be invaluable. 

I find that with my belly birth mamas, birth photos hold an extra special meaning. Inevitability, there are more things that c section moms miss out on so being able to look back on all the details of their babies birth is really special.

Birth photography can also play a powerful role in helping heal birth trauma that is caused by things not going according to plan. Being able to look back on the moments when you faced and overcame such an obstacle with grace and beauty is truly priceless. 

Plus it's pretty cool to imagine these babies as tweens who one day see my photo and say how cool it is to see themselves in that first instant of life on earth.

 
  Baby is lifted so mom can catch a quick peek of the baby she's carried for 9 months . Kathryn J Birth Stories

Baby is lifted so mom can catch a quick peek of the baby she's carried for 9 months. Kathryn J Birth Stories

 

C section mamas, you are brave. Your strength and sacrifice is admirable. Your birth is beautiful.  

Pregnant mamas, know that gentle, family centered c-sections are possible, just be sure to talk to your provider and choose your hospital wisely.  


Curious what birth photography for c-section birth looks like?

 
 

For more images click through the slideshow below.

 
 

If you're expecting in the Dallas Fort Worth area I would love to connect with you! Contact me here, I'd love to hear more about you and your birth plans. 

If you're looking for a photographer outside the DFW area, here is a directory of professional birth photographers worldwide.

 

Why Hire a Birth Photographer?
 
 Your family's love and connection deserves to be remembered like this

Your family's love and connection deserves to be remembered like this

 

A few years back, when I was expecting, the thought of hiring a birth photographer crossed my mind. Then I started thinking about all the reasons not to hire one (like my fluffly mom bod) and I quickly convinced myself it wasn't necessary. 

But then I gave birth.

And the thing about birth is that it is SO fuzzy and blurry after the fact. Regardless of your birth, epidural, c section or drug free, you turn into a beautiful pile of mushy gushy oxytocin bliss and everything is just so fleeting, its easy to forget all the special moments. Thankfully I have a few photos my doula took, but MAN do I wish I had hired a professional so I could revisit those powerful, life changing first moments as a new family. I wish I could see the way my husband held my hand, my smile when I heard that first cry, our reactions to the moment we first saw our new little guy.

So don't mind me as I nerd out about how meaningful it is to have photos of yourself and your family facing and overcoming one of the greatest challenges of your life. And bonus, it turns out professionals do know how to make it photogenic! As birth photographers, we are equipped to handle whatever your birth journey throws our way. I've trained with the top birth photographers in the world, with a mission to catch every pivotal moment of your birth.

Without further adieu, here are some of my favorite birth photography moments that make the investment in birth photography truly priceless. Click on any image to see it larger.

 

Strength

Look at you overcoming that intensity with the support of those you love!  See how selfless and brave you are. 

 

The first moment you lay eyes on your baby

The energy and emotions of this moment are just more than words can describe. 

 

Your "I Did it!" Smile

Yes you did mama, yes you did.

 

Cutest baby award

Babies change so quickly, you are going to want to remember how adorable they were!

 

The way your partner kisses your forehead

He is beyond proud of you.

 

Such gorgeous details

Wrinkly baby feet and incredible umbilical cords.

 

Your partner's reaction to becoming a dad

I mean, that small person in those giant arms. *swoon*

 

So. Much. Love.

Your baby is finally home in your arms.

 

Your other babies meeting their new baby

And instantly becoming giants! Such excited big brothers and sisters.

 

Your parents meeting your baby

One of my favorite reactions to photograph. I mean, c'mon! They just burst with love and pride.

So there you have it. Some of my favorite birth moments to photograph. I seriously love what I do. 

No matter how many births I shoot, every time I enter the birth space with camera in hand I get a bit giddy.

Giddy that I get to give the gift of documentary birth photography to another sweet family.

Giddy that I can enter the birth space as a fellow mama and supportive sister.

Giddy that this mama has recognized how incredible it is to have her beautiful birth story told in photos.

And if I am blessed enough to have another child, I will definitely be hiring one of my fellow Dallas Fort Worth Birth Photographers. No way I am going to let my body image insecurities prohibit me from documenting such one of a kind, best day of your life moments. 

 

If you're expecting in the Dallas Fort Worth area I would love to meet you! Contact me here, I'm excited to hear more about you and your birth plans. 

 

Kathryn Johnson is a Dallas Fort Worth Birth Photographer who celebrates motherhood through maternity, birth and newborn photography. 

If you're looking for a photographer outside the DFW area, here is a directory of professional birth photographers worldwide.

2017 Birth Favorites - DFW Birth Photographer

As 2017 comes to an end I couldn't be more thankful for the wonderful families that trusted me to be their birth photographer.

2017 was filled with so many amazing births, all across the Dallas Fort Worth area. Intimate home births, empowering hospital births, peaceful birth center births, and some beautiful belly births.

Each birth was filled with moments of strength, beauty and love and I am so excited to share my favorites with you. 

I would love to capture your birth story! If you're looking for a Birth Photographer in the DFW area, contact me, I'd love to get to know you. 

Kathryn Johnson is a Dallas Birth Photographer who celebrates motherhood through Maternity, Birth and Newborn Photography. 

 

Kathryn Johnson Comments
Happy Birthday Baby Miles | Forth Worth Birth Photography

The birth of Baby Miles was one of my very firsts as a DFW Birth Photographer. It taught me a lot about birth photography. I got a real taste of what the on call life is like, and even though I already knew, it reminded me just how unpredictable birth can be (I was with this sweet family for 18 hours). But most of all, it deepened my love of birth and further instilled my belief that women are so strong and so brave. 

This beautiful birth story started out as a peaceful home birth in Fort Worth, Texas. When I arrived the amazing mama was working hard and had a wonderfully supportive husband and birth team (Midwife - Katie Perez and Doula - Delilah Ray). 

As the night went on, labor wasn't progressing as expected so the tough decision was made to transfer to Harris Methodist

After a full night and long day of working so hard, baby just wasn't coming. It was decided that a caesarean birth was needed to ensure the safe arrival of their little one.

He's HERE!!! 7lb 2oz baby boy. 

First moments together. 

Happy 1st Birthday Baby Miles!! It was an honor to capture your birth story!

I would love to capture your birth story! If you're looking for a Birth Photographer in the Dallas Forth Worth area, contact me, I'd love to hear more about you and your birth plans. 

Kathryn Johnson is a Dallas Fort Worth Birth Photographer who celebrates motherhood through maternity, birth and newborn photography. 

Kathryn Johnson