Williamsport {Home Birth}



Let me tell you a story…




On a warm almost-summer’s day I got a message that a baby was coming.  By late morning I arrived at their home, a house in a neighborhood that bumped into a big green park, and was let inside amid whispers of welcome & anticipation.  I readied my camera.

There I found a blue pool, a great-grandma knitting, a doula soothing & supporting, a midwife reading a book with watchful eyes on her client & her assistant in scrubs jotting down times in a detailed log.


Nicole Dolan PhotographerNicole Dolan PhotographerNicole Dolan Photographer

She labored in deep breaths, often on her elbows on the edge of the couch, eyes closed in concentration & mindfulness.  When it felt right, she stepped into the pool.
Nicole Dolan Photographer


Her husband listened & stroked, her midwife waited, her sisters & mother & grandmother said silent prayers with quiet compassion, her doula waved calming essential oils under her nose.Nicole Dolan PhotographerNicole Dolan PhotographerAs the baby’s birth seemed more imminent, she leaned into his hands.Nicole Dolan Photographer Four pairs of strong hands helped her fall back against the pool walls as her baby’s head began to crown.  The passive work of labor had progressed & she was ready.

Nicole Dolan PhotographerThat Moment:

The incredible rush & the incredulous relief of holding your baby in your arms at last.  Everyone in the room felt the emotion written on his face.
Nicole Dolan PhotographerCovered in soft baby-frosting, she was held in her mama’s arms as the midwife listened to her heart & blanketed her with a towel.Nicole Dolan PhotographerSoon, she found her dad’s finger & held on tight.

Welcome to your world, baby girl.  Nicole Dolan PhotographerNicole Dolan PhotographerNicole Dolan PhotographerWhen big brother & sister went down for a nap their mom had a baby in her tummy & when they woke up they had a new baby sister!Nicole Dolan PhotographerNicole Dolan PhotographerNicole Dolan Photographer
Nicole Dolan PhotographerNicole Dolan Photographer

It didn’t take long til their delight brought a big smile to their mom’s face.Nicole Dolan Photographer


Nicole Dolan Photographer

After a long snuggle and a snack for both of them, her mostly empty cord was cut & she was plucked from her mama’s arms for a good inspection… Nicole Dolan Photographer

… much to her absolutely adorable dismay.
Nicole Dolan Photographer

Rather than having her cord clamped several inches from her body after birth and then trimmed her midwife applied a tiny, unobtrusive cord ring making for a very pretty little belly button.Nicole Dolan Photographer

Dark hair & soft beautiful pink skin, she was examined & documented by midwife & family alike; camera phones, belly circumference, weighed, fingers to flexing toes, & Oh that cold stethoscope.
Nicole Dolan PhotographerNicole Dolan PhotographerNicole Dolan Photographer


So that mom could get some healing attention, grandma was more than happy to love on her new grandchild.  After fussing for a minute she settled into her arms, blinking at the afternoon light filtering through the window until she closed her eyes to rest.  Being born is hard work for babies too.Nicole Dolan PhotographerNicole Dolan Photographer

She was still snoozing when her aunt took her for some heart-to-heart with her nieces.
Nicole Dolan Photographer


When it was finally her big brother’s turn to hold her, his eyes lit up as he reached for her.  His dad said, “You can give her a kiss” and so he did.  But the best part was the discovery of her tiny perfect fingers.


Nicole Dolan Photographer

Amazing.Nicole Dolan Photographer


And once he found them he didn’t let go either.Nicole Dolan Photographer

Newly promoted to big sister she seemed unsure of this new baby…
Nicole Dolan Photographer

…. til she was placed in her arms.Nicole Dolan Photographer

Tiny fingers come with even tinier little finger nails.Nicole Dolan PhotographerNicole Dolan Photographer


Thank you Melissa & Donnie for sharing your peaceful birth day with me & inviting me to come photograph such an important time in your lives.  This is just the beginning of her story.



                                                             Happy to be so,blogsign








As I got ready to leave big sis & baby sis needed some comfort nursing & I got my favorite shot.

Arms full.

Nicole Dolan PhotographerUPDATE!

I’m so happy to include the contact info for the wonderful midwife & doula:

The midwife pictured here is Lisa Beherec, a CPM offering homebirth and waterbirth services between Williamsport and State College. She can be contacted at lstldn@yahoo.com


Offering comfort and introspection on your sacred journey Lisa Mael Birth/Postpartum Doula lemael@ptd.net (570) 784-2580 Bloomsburg, Pa area



Reader Interactions


  1. Beautiful, Nicole! You did a nice job recounting the birth in words and pictures! It was an awesome experience and your story brings back great memories of that day!

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.