A woman's body goes through significant changes, but externally and internally. As your belly grows your heartburn intensifies, you dread the appearance of stretch marks and added pounds. The plus? You get a cute little baby at the end of it all.
Whether you have an eventful pregnancy or a seamlessly easy one, every woman has certain fears going into labor. Will your water break while you're in line at the grocery store? Will your lady parts every be the same? And the most popular question: How bad is pushing this baby out going to hurt?
Once it is time to push, it's hard to stay calm. Without or without an epidural, your mind is racing and one of the last things on your mind is the pain. You're about to meet your baby for the first time, and that brings a flood of emotions.
Meeting your bundle of joy for the first time can bring a monsoon of emotions. First off, your hormones are all over the place. Secondly, you don't know what your offspring is going to look like—so it's all a bit of a surprise.
Depending on your own personal birthing process and the position of your body, his or her appearance may be a little different than you imagined. Coming into the world through that birth canal takes a lot of pressure, and your baby's head—which is not fully fused—takes the brunt of it.
Vaginal birth can cause some unexpected and rather dramatic changes to a baby's head as they are born. Birth photographer Kayla Reeder recently had the opportunity to catch the birth of a couple's baby that proves how extreme this effect can be. These images definitely put things into perspective!
Nikki—the woman who Reeder was to scheduled to photograph during delivery—went into labor on February 14th, and Reeder made her way to the hospital. “Her husband and I both raced to the hospital. I pull in the parking lot 45 minutes later and her mom calls me, she's nine cm. I make my way upstairs with haste,” Reeder stated. Merely an hour later it was time to meet their little man!
“Finally Graham made his way into the world! He is BEAUTIFUL. Mama had immediate skin to skin with him and Dad showered them in love,” Reeder revealed about the baby boy's arrival. Everyone rejoiced, but no one could help but notice the newborn's most distinct feature. An hour of pushing completely morphed his appearance.
The strain of labor did a number of the roundness of Graham's head, but it was no cause for concern. “It’s no cause for alarm or concern in this case and his birth was in no way traumatic because of it," Reeder stated. One key factor contributed to his unexpected cone head.
10. His Position Created His Exaggerated Head Shape
This newborn was a bit sideways in the birth canal, so it took a little extra effort for Nikki to push him out. "His head was tilted a bit to the side so the molding isn’t centered and it caused his mama to push for a bit longer than if he would have been in a better position," Reeder revealed. Although a dramatic example, it didn't take long for Graham's little noggin to form correctly.
“Soon after birth the moulding went down and by few days old he had a perfectly shaped head," Reeder revealed. Although his head had an awkward start, it only took a few days of life for Graham's body to completely repair. This is definitely not an uncommon experience, for babies of all shapes and sizes.
It is no surprise that a newborn's head can encounter a little bit of push and pull since their skulls are not yet fully formed. A newborn's head is composed of plates that are connected by sutures, a malleable fibrous material that benefits baby during his trip through the birth canal. Sutures help baby push through the birth canal, and they allow bones to shift and move to make labor a success.
Babies are also born with soft spots on their heads, which also alleviate any damage to the skull during birth. Newborns aren't the only one changing and shifting for labor, as a woman's body completely transforms when pregnant. This includes the intense shift of her internal organs in order to house her bundle of joy!
Even though Graham was in an inconvenient position for birth, the couple wouldn't change a thing. “The love and adoration and relief that he was finally here radiated through them. Graham was perfect in every way. Right down to his little cone head," Reeder stated. Little Graham's birth was perfectly imperfect.
“It was a blessing to witness,” Reeder said in reference to the birth of baby Graham. Birth may not be easy or stress-free, but it's so worth it. Here's to the power of the human body for making it possible!