This time last year we welcomed Kirby to the world

I feel honoured to share so many of your personal moments, I’d like to share one of mine from last year. Exactly one year ago, Louise was one day overdue expecting our 2nd daughter, the whole pregnancy had gone extremely well and if this was to be like the 1st we were expecting a long labour, Cassidy our 1st had taken 36 hours! Louise was very understanding of my desire to photograph the event, I appreciate most expectant mothers wouldn’t like a camera at this time and I really, REALLY appreciated it. At the last pregnancy I wish I’d had my camera as I would have loved to capture, the waiting at the hospital, the monitors, the cutting of the cord, the first few moments of the baby coming into the world and I thought the photojournalist in me would be able to capture all of it in stunning detail, in beautiful compositions, capturing those once in a lifetime moments. Life had very different plans though!

We went into the hospital on the Saturday night with what we thought were contractions and the start of labour, we were admitted to a ward and Louise was connected up to all the monitors, 20 minutes later we were told it was Braxton Hicks and to go home. A little bit deflated we went home, picked up a takeaway and even watched a film. Looking back on it now it seems silly to think Louise was in Labour being able to do all of that. We went to sleep …ok I went to sleep 🙂

Louise woke me up at 5am to say she thought she was having contractions “Are you sure?” – I never felt so silly as soon as the words left my lips. We phoned the hospital and they said the contractions weren’t close enough together or lasting for the right amount of time and to ‘relax’, take a bath and see how we got on. It was at this point I got my camera back out, trying to be as discrete as possible understanding that any wrong move could mean it’s banishment from a very emotional and hormonal wife about to give birth. It was a very magical time sitting in that bathroom and one of those times that you go through as a couple and strengthens your bond more than anything else I can imagine. I’m not sure Louise would agree with magical but I know she felt that bond at that time too.

It was shortly after that ‘moment’ that we decided we were going to the hospital no matter what and that we should just give the hospital a heads up that we were coming in. Louise was on the phone to the midwife and describing her pain and the feeling to push, Louise handed the phone to me to speak to the midwife

“Mr Bishop you’re not going to get to the hospital in time….”

GULP! I went into my calm and logical mode that happens when things get impossible, outwardly I can understand people thinking that I reacted quite well but inside I was screaming! I rang the emergency services at 7.28am, the paramedics were on their way and as per their instructions I got Louise ready on the sofa with towels and blankets. One of us remembered that our next door neighbour Shirley used to be a midwife. I ran next door and after the furious door bashing Shirley knew straight away why I was there and we both went back to Louise. The paramedics closely followed us in to see Louise was crowning, after Shirley quickly assessed that the cord was too tight around the baby’s neck and cut it loose Kirby was brought fully into this world! I declared her birth at 7.45am. Within 17mins Louise had given birth, without any pain relief whatsoever, I’m still absolutely amazed how she did it. It was only after it was all over I remembered my camera, my nerves shot to bits and even though the photos are far from award winning we’ll treasure them forever to remind us of that very special day.

So today we celebrate the anniversary of Kirby’s arrival in the world and words can’t go far enough to describe how very thankful we are to Shirley and the paramedics that delivered our baby girl into this world. Tx

(BTW The date on the watch in one of the pics is wrong, it should have said Sunday 20th, the time is right though)

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