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My Very First Photo as a New Mom

  • Courtesy of Deborah Skolnik

    Deborah Skolnik, Parenting Senior Editor

    After 20 hours of labor, I needed a C-section at 4am. I was so spent, I almost fell asleep right after. But once they put my daughter, Clara, in my arms, I couldn't stop stop looking at her. I'd somehow thought I'd be having a black-haired, brown-eyed boy—I couldn't get over my blonde, blue-eyed girl!  PS: That necklace I'm wearing? I spent the next 3 weeks *wanting* to take it off, but feeling too tired to reach behind my neck and unclasp it, no exaggeration.

  • Courtesy of Melissa Taylor

    Melissa Taylor, Class Notes blogger

    Giving birth was a surreal experience—40 hours of labor! I felt very
    overwhelmed (and tired) when I first held my baby, then thought why did I spend so much time reading books about pregnancy? I should have read books about being a mom! It took me years to realize that I could trust myself, and that I knew what to do all along. Anyway, nothing can really prepare you for the adventure of motherhood; it's just something you have to live.

  • Courtesy of Melanie Rosen

    Melanie Rosen, Senior editor

    This is one of the very first photos taken after Ben's birth, a whopping five years ago. I was prepared with some of the material things, like the nursing bra shown here, but wholly unprepared for being a mother. I felt exhausted (17 hours of labor, through the night on no sleep), overwhelmed, terrified by the thought of having full responsibility for another human being... and elated that Ben was finally here.

  • Courtesy of Heather Gumbley

    Heather Gumbley, Parenting Associate Publisher, Marketing

    After 6 weeks of bed rest and an emergency c-section, I was definitely
    ready to meet my baby (although I would have been happy to wait a few
    more weeks to let her grow a bit more while in my tummy!).  It wasn't
    until about 24 hours post-surgery that our first "snuggle" finally
    happened—this photo captures our first family photo in the NICU. I
    am looking equal parts exhausted and elated, a feeling I had for about
    the next 6 months (and sometimes still have almost 3 years later!) and
    I can't believe how tiny—and strong—our daughter was.

  • Photo Courtesy of Christine Coppa

    Christine Coppa, Mama’s Boy blogger

    Reunited and it feels so good! I had a planned C-section due to a major spinal surgery I had at the age of 16. After surgery, I stole a quick kiss and my Mom accompanied JD to the nursery. I headed to recovery, heavily drugged on morphine where my Dad was waiting for me. By the time I got to really hold my sweet JD, he was chilling and sucking his thumb like he owned the place. Atta boy! I mean, Mama's Boy!

  • Courtesy of Sasha Emmons

    Sasha Emmons, Executive Editor

    It had been a very long and exhausting day of labor and pushing that ended in an unplanned-for C-section. Moments before I had been at the end of my rope mentally and physically, but then they handed Chloe to me, and all that went away immediately. I literally could feel no pain. All my husband and I could keep saying was we couldn’t believe how much we loved her already.

  • Courtesy of Jen Geddes

    Jennifer Geddes, Parenting Senior Research Editor

    All moms are exhausted after labor, but Isabel Grace, at 8 lbs 9 oz, left me reeling! Still, I couldn't believe her beauty and how in awe of her we both were. An OB on staff offered to take this picture for us andpostit on the hospital's site. His father (also an OB) had done the same thing to document the babies that were delivered in his hospital. I loved the tradition he was passing along and was happy to sit for this shot.

  • Courtesy of Kim Hays

    Kim Hays, Babytalk Executive Editor

    Counting and kissing her tiny toes.

  • Courtesy of Taylor Newman

    Taylor Newman, Natural Parenting blogger

    There isn't much of my face in this photo, mostly Kaspar's, which brings me right back, because it's what I saw. This face, these eyes, looking at me. I'd known he'd be there, because he'd been there in my belly for those nine months, but to hold a real human baby, look into his eyes, hold hands (which I hadn't realized we'd done instinctively until I saw this photo)--it took my breath away. When this photo was taken, I know exactly what I said. I whispered it, looked right into those eyes, and said, "Hi, little one. Welcome." I was relieved, overjoyed, and... terrified. 

  • Sarah Preston Gorenstein, Fertility Files Blogger

    From the minute Preston came out, via scheduled C-section (due to marginal placenta previa), I was a total goner. He was the most perfect little newborn, and barely made a peep when he came out. All I could do was stare at him in awe -- I made him! I was in pain from the surgery (a lot of pain) but other than that, those four days in the hospital were such a blast: round-the-clock care, a revolving door of family and friends, and great food! (We're Jewish.) See that little foot--his feet are still my favorite body part. And I hate feet!

  • Erin Zammett Ruddy, Mom Without a Filter Blogger

    I had just had drug-free birth and felt like a rockstar. Nick was still in the corner of the room not sure what to do because it all happened so fast. I had intended on having an epidural after laboring at home (and in the car en route) until about 7 centimeters, but by the time the anesthesiologist got there it was too late. One of the reasons I want a third kid is because I find the birth experience so freakin' cool (despite being unbelievably painful!).