How To Write Your Birth Story
DFW Birth Photographer and Videographer
Writing your birth story soon after the birth of your child is important for many reasons. It helps you lay out a timeline of events, it can help you process a difficult birth, and it can provide a very special keepsake for years to come. You can write it as a story from your point of view, or as a letter to your newborn baby so he/she can read it when they get older. Whatever your reason may be, the steps below may help guide you into writing your birth story.
1. Start as soon as you can.
Whether you write it with a pencil and paper, or type it on your computer, try to jot down as much as you can as soon as you can. The longer you wait to write, the more details you’ll forget! The first few weeks with a newborn will be a big blur later on and will more than likely create difficulties remembering the birth. Don’t worry about sounding professional, heck, I write these blogs all the time and I don’t have a clue what I’m doing!! 😉 joking!
2. Get Detailed
Write as many details as you can. Sometimes it helps to look through questions and try to answer them while you reflect. Example: What day/time did your contractions start? When did you start timing them? Who was with you when labor started? What was your family/significant other doing? What was the weather like? If you had to travel to your birthing location, what did that feel like? What was the traffic like? When you hit transition and into pushing your baby out, what did that feel like? Who was there for you supporting you? Where was your husband/partner? What thoughts did you have the minute you laid eyes on your baby? What feelings bombarded you? Did you have any fears?
3. Ask for help.
You probably had a support team there with you throughout labor and birth, whether it was your husband or partner and/or doula… Maybe you also had a sister, best friend, or other family/friends present as well. No matter who it was, ask away and get more feedback! The more perspectives you get, the more you can piece together the faded memories. Shoot, if you had a birth photographer present, there were there and experienced it with you!
4. Request your medical records.
No matter where you decided to birth your baby, the odds are high that your medical provider took birth notes. Sometimes these notes can be very detailed with times events happened (such as waters breaking) all the way to some words you said while in labor.
Fact: After 3 years I finally decided to ask for our birth records from the San Antonio Birth Center. There were so many details!!! It’s like I relived my past! A little less than 2 hours before my daughter was born I said “I want to die. Dying sounds good right now.” I laughed and cried when I read that!
5. Look at photos/videos
If you had hired a birth photographer/videographer, or had your doula and/or family take cell phone photos… ask to have those and view them. Look them over and read into the photo to find out more information. Look for a clock on the wall or someone wearing a watch – does it have the time? If you have a video, listen for sounds in the background – what else was happening?
6. Save it! Share it!
Save it in a safe place so you never lose it, or print it out and put it in a scrapbook. And if you want to inspire other soon-to-be-mothers, share it! If you’re a client of mine and you’d like to share your birth story with me, email it to me or submit it below and have it featured on my blog!