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Giving birth to my current youngest child, I found myself on the floor, on all fours, ready and willing to push my baby out in that position. Too bad my doctor wasn't into it. Luckily, I was able to labor standing up, which I thought was the most manageable way to deal with the pain, as I swayed and shifted my weight, and the waves ripped through me.
Laboring and giving birth standing up felt best one Virginia mom, so she just went with the flow. The photos of her baby's dramatic home birth were captured in fascinatingly-raw form, by birth photographer Michelle Lynn.
In a post on her blog, Michelle sets up the scene for how this baby burst into the world in spectacular fashion. (The mother prefers to be referred to as Mrs. A). "After a little while of laboring in her living room Mrs. A moved into her bedroom and decided that she would stay there for the remainder of her labor. She moved from hands and knees to standing between sets of surges." She managed the pain with hypnobirthing methods.
Keep scrolling and check out the photos of Mrs. A's brave, home labor.
As the end of her labor came closer she leaned on her husband for support.
"One surge came and her body pushed for the first time," Michelle recalls on her blog. And then, THIS happened.
"The amniotic sac was still intact at this point and covering his head. The midwife reached with one hand to get the sac off his face and Mrs. A pushed again and the whole body was born in one giant gush."
"The midwife had her hands on baby the whole time," Michelle reassures those who are perhaps shocked by the intense nature of this birth. "Mother and baby were never in danger during this delivery," she adds.
"There is no greater joy than seeing a family be born," Michelle says.
"I am still in awe today looking at these images and remembering how calm and collected this mother was," Michelle wrote on her blog.
And we, Michelle, are in awe of these incredible, telling images as well. Because that, is birth. Unedited, uncensored, real, raw, and quite simply, breathtaking to behold.
And to Mrs. A, all I can say is, damn mama! You are a warrior, for having the birth you wanted, for doing it your way, for embracing the most natural, beautiful thing a woman can do, with such wild abandon. Yeah, I'm still not over it.
Learn more about Michelle Lynn's gripping photography on her website, and Facebook page.
This post was originally published in November, 2016
Opinions expressed by parent contributors are their own.