For those of you who didn't know, today is Father's Day in many countries around the world. And there's a very simple reason why this day is so widely celebrated, and that's because dads are awesome. Check out these professional pictures of dads in the delivery room to see what we mean. They'll make you laugh, they'll make you cry, but most importantly they'll remind you, if you ever needed reminding, that dads deserve to be spoiled today for being there for us, and there with us, since the very first day we were born.
“This baby’s mom had just handed her to her father for some skin-to-skin ... and this sweet girl was clearly absolutely smitten! At less than two hours old, she was raising her head to look straight into his eyes.”
“This couple had really, really wanted a baby for several years. While I was waiting for the baby’s father to come out from the OR, his sister said, ‘I can hear him crying from here!’ One minute later, we saw him — covered in happy tears and holding his baby girl.”
"Just before a gestational surrogate gave birth to their son in Kingston, Ontario, a midwife screamed “shirts off” so new dads Frank Nelson and BJ Barone would be ready to hold their baby against their bare chests for skin-to-skin bonding."
"I adore this image of my sweet husband. In the midst of pushing I told him (strongly) "Do not move!" His head was the perfect resting spot for my foot. Throughout my entire pregnancy and birth he told me: I know you can do this. You're going to be absolutely amazing. He's been my rock again and again."
“As the pushing phase progressed, this first-time dad grew more and more excited to meet his daughter. As her head started to emerge, he repeatedly covered his face in wonderment and awe. Her first breath certainly took his breath away!”
“This dad was injured severely in an accident in Afghanistan just three months before the birth of their second baby. He wasn’t able to support his wife physically, but he found other ways to help and hold space.”
That tattoo on his chest was done after their first miscarriage, and now his daughter lies her sweet head against it. Both of them a reminder of triumph.
“This dad’s pregnant wife and unborn daughter tragically passed away years ago. He has their names tattooed on his ring finger, which is visible in the photo. Later, he met and fell in love with his wife. This is their first son, Jude. Holding him for the first time skin-to-skin was a very emotional moment.”
“These dads waited for so long for their baby — born via surrogate at a birth center — that they were just completely overcome with joy when they finally got to hold him.”
"When you just realize that after two boys...you finally have a girl."
"And she opened her eyes and found him. She arched back her neck so that she could see or sense him better. Her father. The beginning of lifelong love."
“This dad wanted to make sure no one touched his baby’s umbilical cord until it had fully finished its job, so this was one way to guard it against being cut too early! This family knows how to have a good time any place, any time — this wasn’t staged at all! (They did use scissors to cut the umbilical cord.)”
“This mother had been laboring for about 12 hours at this point and was absolutely exhausted. She was entering into transition, so each contraction was getting even more intense. Mic, the father, leaned in to pull her in close as she came down from the last contraction, wiping her tears from her cheeks. It was truly one of the sweetest moments I’ve ever captured between a mom and dad.”
Trusting my body and my baby, I recognized when a fearful thought would arise and chose to change it. Absolutely it was incredibly hard, but I was strong - stronger than maybe some skeptics had believed when they found out I was doing a home birth. And sincerely, people's doubts never offended me. I just felt sad that they didn't realize the full feminine strength that all women posses. I got to experience it in all its fullness yesterday, and my reward was birthing, not only a baby, but also a mom. _ Bonnie started letting me know she wanted to come meet the world at 5:00am on Monday, January 2, and my astounding husband and mother helped me labor until about 12:45pm when I got in our bathtub to push. My little sweet sister joined us then to squeeze my hand and help document the journey. Our midwife, Emily, from Lovers Lane Birth Center, was calming and made me feel strong and safe. The last push was something I'll never forget - a defining moment in my life. She came out into the water at 1:59pm and she was perfect. _ Ben and I got a moment alone with this new little angel and I fell even more in love with my sweet husband. I'm reliving yesterday in my head over and over again. It was amazing, and if you are at all interested in a home or natural birth, I'm thrilled to help provide any insight or resources. _ Our little Birdie is 7.5lbs and 20in long with hair already long enough for pigtails. She pooped on me three times in the first two hours of her life, so we know she's for sure Ben's daughter...
“These two dads are just about to meet their son for the first time. They traveled to Canada from Barcelona, Spain, (where surrogacy is illegal) to be there and support the surrogate mama in labor and delivery.”
"At 12:21am an AMAZING mother and INCREDIBLE father delivered their precious baby in the front seat of their car! I am still in awe of their strength, their sweet baby could not wait another minute to come into this world and his father delivered him within minutes of putting his car in park. No words can describe how amazing it was to watch this miracle, more to come as I was able to capture it all! Birth photographers dream, what a wild night it was. So in love with this family! Welcome to the world sweet babe."
“There are those moments in life that you know will change you forever. And sometimes in those moments, you just can’t keep it together!”
"This is the couple’s first live birth, they had a still birth just over a year and a half ago. This mommy went through 24 hours of labor, and then everything stopped for just over a week. Her water then broke and she was in labor for 30 hours before their son was born. When the baby arrived, they both broke down crying when he took his first breath."
A normal part of life and an honor to catch your own baby.
“It was a long birth for these first-time parents, but the father not only encouraged his partner, he also talked to his baby throughout labor. It was beautiful to witness.”
"And he reached down and delivered his own baby. Look at the tenderness in his hands, his face. This is family. This is love.
“This couple had decided right after getting married that they would have kids via adoption, not because of any physical constraints, but because that was what was in their hearts. Their first daughter is 2 years old and they adopted her the day she was born. So it came as a huge surprise when they moved to Hawaii and, at the same time, found out they were pregnant! This father was his partner’s rock throughout the whole labor, both physically and mentally. When she pulled her baby to her chest, their reactions were so different — but so awesome!”
“This was this couple’s first girl and their last baby. It was also their first home birth and it just all came together for them. There was so much love in the room. This baby is daddy’s little girl for sure.”
“This is a rainbow birth. This couple had several miscarriages and stillbirths. This mom wrote in a blog post on my site: ‘My initial thoughts were: that hurt and I’m glad it’s over. Then it hit me, he’s here and he’s alive. We are bringing a baby home from the hospital! Still seems like such a dream.’”
“This dad had been emotional from the moment the midwife told his partner it was time to push. He supported her through every second of her painful labor — and two epidurals. There was so much anticipation and lead-up to this moment that when the time came, his emotions utterly overwhelmed him in the most precious and authentic way. I can’t imagine how much his daughter will love seeing this moment when she’s older, knowing just how much her father loves her.”
“This dad is holding his son for the first time, after waiting for his girlfriend to nurse and to have her time with the baby, skin-to-skin. Even though he was so patient, you could also see he was excited to finally get to hold his baby.”
“Complete happiness! This was the couple’s second daughter, born at home.”
“Moments after watching his first child be delivered, this father tearfully gazes at his wife with such love and admiration.”
Matt meets our daughter Story for the first time on January 30, 2009.
"He reached down and pulled his baby up and out of the water. Incredible."
Catching his baby at home. I'm remembering him saying something along the lines of, "This is so cool!"
“This moment! If any couple has really labored together, it was them. Watching them bring their son into the world and meet him for the first time was so moving.”
“This dad was so shocked that the birth of their second baby happened so fast that it took him a few moments to realize what had happened. Even though you know you are about to have a baby, that moment is still so big and shocking!”
“This dad labored through intense contractions alongside his wife. Sometimes I’d look at him and know he was feeling her pain, too!”
"I love seeing a dad meet his baby. There is something so powerful and healing about seeing men embrace fatherhood."
"The way they looked at each other... From the first contraction to the moment they held her in their arms... Took my breath away. This is love. This is family."
"One of my favorite "dad moments.""
“I adore care providers who allow partners to be such important parts of their baby’s birth. Allowing dads to have this opportunity — or encouraging them to sit skin-to-skin just after birth helps facilitate an opportunity for instant bonding with their babies.”
“This dad is helping his wife through her ‘surges’ or contractions as they were getting closer to meeting their first child.”
"We just got our birth photos from @elisethephotographer and I don't even have any words to describe how special they are to me. Each so intensely beautiful and powerful in its own way, I wish I could share every single one of them! (I will definitely be spamming loads of them today!). I can hardly believe it's already been three weeks since we brought our sweet girl earth side. It feels like just yesterday, but then it also feels like a lifetime ago. Time is the strangest thing like that. Seeing these photos now and watching our video, it's totally like a dream. An incredibly amazing and perfect dream. I am so grateful to her for being there to capture these priceless moments. We will forever cherish these photos!"
“As this mama worked through a contraction, her partner was by her side offering his love and support.”
"Isn't it incredible when dads catch their own babies?"
“This dad is a firefighter and paramedic. Part of the couple’s deal was that if they were going to have a third baby, he’d get to help with the delivery. The amazing OB-GYN was super supportive of him being involved and when it came time for mom to push, basically walked dad through the delivery. He was completely hands-on, delivering his baby boy!”
"The dance, the connection. Labor is both a solitary act... And one that requires you find your deepest and truest support."