It is no surprise how much I adore First 48 sessions. They are easily my favorite thing to capture. If you have followed my work for any amount of time, you have heard me gush over just how magical these sessions are. I kid you not, I get SO EXCITED every time someone hires me to photograph this super special time. And every time I walk into a hospital to meet a new baby I am just giddy with anticipation.
If you are expecting and on the fence about whether or not you should hire a photographer for a hospital session, let me try to convince you that you absolutely, 100% need to do it.
1. You won’t remember it.
Whether you are a Mom or Dad, the birth of your child is arguably the best moment of your life. There are so many little details that make up your experience in the hospital. Everyone’s emotions are running high. Family and friends are probably at the hospital with you, not to mention all the doctors and nurses. No matter how peaceful of a birth you aim for, things actually get pretty chaotic at some point. And then comes the calm. After your baby arrives, it is just you, your spouse and your new bundle in this hospital room for a day or two (or three). Before you are thrust into the world where you actually have to care of a child on your own, you are in a bubble. Doctors and nurses are caring for you around the clock and your only real job is to love on your baby. Seems like you would be able to soak in every detail and remember it forever, right? Wrong. Did you forget that you just had a baby? One that needs to eat of average every 2 hours. And that needs diaper changes. And you are in pain and need constant care and medication. Oh, and both of you still need care through the night- here is where the sleep deprivation begins. Trust me when I say, you will not remember the details of your hospital stay.
2. You don’t want to be burdened with taking the photos yourself.
You just had a baby. Sure, I know you are totally going to take approximately 1,000,000 selfies and iPhone photos of your new little one. That is a given. But do you actually want to have to remember your camera, on top of ALL the other stuff that you need to bring to the hospital. Not to mention if you do remember your camera, are you really going to want to get out of bed to create a make-shift photo session in the hospital? This is where I want you to think long and hard about how that baby is getting out of your body- I don’t care which way it comes out, it will hurt. And you are going to be in significant pain. And sleep deprived. And emotional. Hit the “easy” button on this one and just hire someone.
3. IF you take the photos yourself, you aren’t in them. Duh.
This may seem like an obvious statement but if you are taking the photos, you won’t be in them. I mean, sure, selfies are great and all but do you only want selfies to remember THE GREATEST DAY OF YOUR LIFE? Sure, you are probably also thinking that you won’t look your best after having a baby so you are cool with not being in the photos. Let me stop you right there. I could write an entire blog post about this because I feel so strongly about it. You need to be in photos with your baby. No matter how tired. No matter how much extra weight you are carrying. No matter if you got a shower or not. Get in the photos. You just birthed a baby. The least you can do as a gift to yourself is hire someone to capture the momentous occasion. Not only do you owe it to yourself, you owe it to your child. As they grow up, they will absolutely cherish seeing YOU in photos with them as a newborn. They will adore seeing the overwhelming joy in your eyes. Your children deserve to see you in these photos as much as you do.
4. This is guaranteed to be the most magical 48 hours of your life.
This is a bet that I will definitely win. I have had three children and all three of my hospital stays were some of my favorite days of all time. Sure, there are moments of annoyance and inconvenience… I mean nurses do come check on you super frequently and doctors do start their rounds at 5am BUT even knowing that, I promise it is magic. You have assisted childcare. The nurses are there to help you care for and learn how to care for your little one. You are waited on hand and foot. Someone brings you food, water and drugs on command. Amazing! You are not working and have zero responsibilities other than snuggling a newborn baby. Your spouse is probably the sweetest, most doting that he has ever been. Family and friends are sending you flowers, balloons and sweets. You get to nap as you please. All of these things are great and help make this magical bubble what it is. But the real reason that the hospital is so magical is that you aren’t home yet. You haven’t been thrust into the world with expectations and responsibilities. You haven’t been sent out into the world with an infant that you have no idea what to do with.
5. You will never regret having them done.
Above all else, you will never ever, EVER regret hiring a professional to capture your family in the hospital. Is it an added expense to an already expensive endeavor? Yes. Is it one more thing you have to coordinate? Yes. But I promise you, these images will mean more to you than anything else. You will never look back on them and think, “Why did we spend the money to have these photos taken”? Think back to your wedding day. It was an overwhelming, emotional, chaotic day that was absolutely everything to you. It was the best. Would it have ever crossed your mind not to hire a photographer to capture it? No way. So why on earth is this any different? This is a bigger day than your wedding. This is more memorable. Sure, you won’t have professional hair and makeup or look like a princess but you will HAVE CREATED A HUMAN. Ladies, that is a way bigger deal.
After all of this convincing, if you still aren’t sure, let me just tell you that I practiced what I preach here. When our 3rd was born, we did a hospital session and it was absolutely a dream. Those are some of my most cherished images and I have never once regretted the choice to do them. My kids LOVE looking at those images as much as I do. Trust me here ladies, you want this time frozen. If you are interested in more information or want to reach out to talk about the magic that is First 48 sessions, please reach out to me here and let’s start the conversation.