We sometimes hear about women giving birth unexpectedly at home and having to deliver their own babies. While those are vaginal births, we rarely hear of a mum assisting her baby out of the womb during a c-section birth, let alone see it with our own eyes.
One mum in Kentucky, USA has done just that, and had professional photographer Sarah Hill on hand to capture the momentous event.
Emily Dial is a midwife and as soon as she knew she was pregnant, she knew she wanted to assist with the birth of her baby and enlisted Hill early on to photograph it.
The big day came and Dial scrubbed up at the hospital as she would for a birth she were attending in her job, the only difference being that her gloves covered her IV and it was her own baby she was going to deliver..
The birth went ahead as planned, with Emily's hands being guided by doctors to grasp her baby and gently pull her out of the womb. Emily remained behind the transparent sterile shield witnessing her baby being born.
Sharing the experience on Facebook, photographer Sarah Hill posted, "This was by far one of the most incredible days of my life. My amazing midwife Emily Dial not only had a C-Section today but SHE PULLED THE BABY OUT HERSELF!!!!!! It was unreal. To say that she is amazing, is an understatement."
Mum Emily shared her take on the unique moment.
"It was truly a full circle moment," Dial told LoveWhatMatters "It was tying together the two things I love the most: my family and my career. It truly was one of the happiest moments of my life."
While she was prepared for things not to go quite to plan, everything worked out perfectly. With all eyes in the delivery room on mother and baby, Emma was guided out by her mother's hands.
"She was in the right position. I felt good," she said. "I guess it's kind of second nature (to me) to pull babies out," she explained.
It was a sweet role reversal of sorts for the midwife and her photographer. Dial delivered Hill's youngest baby in 2016.
She also admits not everyone can and would birth the way she did, but that women, "...can have a great experience and really savour the moment, regardless of C-section or no."
Hill agrees, and has a message of encouragement for women.
"I have a new sense of how incredible we as women truly are. Be an advocate of your own body. You'd be amazed at the amount of women that don't know that YOU can control your birth and not just get told what to do."
Full of admiration for both Emily and the staff involved with the birth, photographer Hill finished her post saying, "She was meant to bring babies into this world and didn't let a little thing like a C-Section stop her from delivering her own! To watch her colleagues rally around her and make this happen was so beautiful. It was truly an honour to be there and capture this for her and Daniel."
See all of the photos of the birth on the Sarah Hill Photography Facebook page.