THE HEART OF MY STORY
There are many paths that I have both dawdled and run along to get me to where I am in this very moment. They’ve shaped me as a a friend, a daughter, a sister, a wife and a mother. Most importantly, they’ve shaped me as a woman. I’m not yet at my destination, nor do I actually intend on reaching it ever. I’m not concerned about the destination. All I see is an infinite number of pathways, winding roads, twisted trails, all writing my story with no ending.
If you traced my steps back along the pathways that led me here, you’d find a playful childhood on the sunny Gold Coast with a beautifully loving and generous family, school years filled with academic and creative ambition, a background in fine art, make up artistry and nursing, an obsession with Harry Potter, a marriage to my best friend and secret childhood sweetheart, a lust for travel both abroad and in our own backyard, and a transition into motherhood that has been everything I could have dreamed of and more, both undeniably challenging and magical at the same time.
I fell pregnant for the first time in 2017 and had my baby boy, William, via an emergency caesarean following a ‘failed induction’. The circumstances that led to my induction were a little dubious and my birth experience was so excessively far from what I had envisioned that I grieved for the loss of what I believed at the time, to be a rite of passage into motherhood. My caesarian delivery was immediately followed by a severe postpartum haemorrhage and for a short while, I was quite unwell. At the time, I wasn’t overly familiar with birth photography, but I was still captivated by the raw emotion it invoked and so I asked our wedding photographer to photograph our birth. But as I could foresee my birth becoming more and more medicalised, I cancelled her just before I was induced for fear of being photographed in such a vulnerable state. I lost sight of what birth photography meant to women, and I regret that every time I look back on my blurry iPhone pictures of that day. I will never forget the feeling of my birth experience. It will stay with me forever, though I can now accept that and put those memories aside. I don’t doubt for one second that to have had those images as a therapeutic tool would have been invaluable in my healing journey. All those little details are lost forever now. And I desperately wish I could get that back.
My journey into motherhood is what ultimately sparked my interest in birth photography specifically. I am a creative, a photographer and an occasional portrait painter. I am a nurturer. I am a lover of nature and an advocate for holistic health. I am incredibly passionate about women’s rights in the birth space, midwifery-led care and breastfeeding. I am an avid podcast listener, a foodie, a cappucino drinker and a tea addict lacking self-control. I love adventuring in our caravan, sitting in my husband’s lap under the stars, in front of a warm camp fire. Every day, I wish time would stand still as I hold my wild little boy in my arms as he falls asleep, tracing the contours of his face. All these things, amongst a sea of emotions, quirks and connections, make up the nitty gritty of my story. I photograph women, their births and their families, unravelling the nitty gritty of theirs.