Kirstie Perez is an experienced birth photographer, but this delivery surprised even her. During her pregnancy, the mom had been suffering from Hyperemesis Gravidarum, a condition characterized by severe nausea, vomiting, weight loss, and electrolyte disturbance. Her husband had been at her side throughout it all, including the 4 times the woman was hospitalized. The couple hired Kirstie to document the culmination of this experience at the hospital and she did a wonderful job. The photos are so powerful, they could easily compete for the top prizes at the most prestigious birth photo competition. However, when Kirstie told the husband that she captured him crying seeing his son he said, “That’s not why I was crying.”
“What allows me to create such intimate and powerful images is the relationships I create with each client throughout their pregnancy, delivery and postpartum,” Kirstie told Bored Panda. “They know what I stand for and my mission [is] to normalize birth and the traumatic experiences we go through as women. I genuinely love and am protective of all of my clients’ birth experiences.
The photographer said she was never okay with the phrase ‘it’s all about the baby.’ “I love babies, but I am definitely team mom,” Kirstie added. “It is much more than taking the money and showing up. The relationship is crucial. If I don’t click well with prospects during a consult, I will politely decline. I cannot, in good conscious, take funds from a mother who is vulnerable and could possibly be a better fit for someone else. I truly care about the emotional and psychological well being of my clients.”
“This time was different because this client happened to be my little sister,” Kirstie said. I watched her go through hell. <…> She was in constant pain. She could have died carrying her baby. There was no prior warning that HG was a variable in her pregnancy. I watched her fight and give her life for someone innocent. I watched her husband look on helplessly for almost a year. The emotions in the room were incredible.”
Scroll down to check out the unforgettable shots and learn why the husband was reduced to tears.
P.S. “I would like to add that birth photography is a ‘newer’ type of subject to document. It is still taboo in a lot of places. The goal of Kirstie Perez Photography is to encourage women and let them see different options of births and experiences. To let them know that they are valid and that their experiences are not simply equated to ‘well at least you’re ok.’”
“He helplessly watched his wife vomit profusely for 285+ days”
“He witnessed her lose 30 pounds in pregnancy not being able to nourish herself due to Hyperemesis Gravidarum & preeclampsia”
“She was hospitalized 4 times for dehydration throughout her pregnancy”
“Ate more dinners on the front steps of their home than he could count because any scent literally made her ill”
“After months of simply being there for her as much as possible, he supported her during birth”
“I told him I captured him crying seeing his son and he said, “That’s not why I was crying.”
“Puzzled, I asked what he meant”
“He teared up again and said”
“This is the first time I have seen her smile in 10 months”
“Men, please understand how powerful your empathy can be. To all of the mothers who have traumatic pregnancies and still find a way to smile…thank you for sacrificing yourself and enduring to bring your precious child into the world. That is no easy feat.”
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