Utah Birth Photography | Lilly and Logan’s Twin Birth
As photographers, we usually share for two reasons, because an image is good technically speaking or because it’s good emotionally. This unique Payson, Utah twin birth story is an emotional one and after nearly two years, I’ve decided it’s more important to share for the emotion and power within it than to worry about everyone judging my images.
This was my first birth story as a photographer and second photo shoot I ever did (first one being Emily’s maternity pictures). I shot it in automatic mode. It wanted to record my best friend’s twin birth and had no idea I would later be doing this professionally.
Please read through this story not for the amazing pictures, but for the emotion within them. Be warned that I included some of the c-section images in color. I know there are many of you who also had births that ended up in emergency c-sections and I wanted to bring to life the reality of that with my photos.
The Birth Story
Words cannot even describe Emily’s excitement upon hearing the news that she was pregnant. After 10 years of infertility and adopting 2 sons, Emily was finally going to carry a baby of her own. A few weeks later, joy overcame her family once again when she learned she was having twins, yep, not just one baby but twins!!!
Although Emily knew there was a chance of her miscarrying the babies, she couldn’t retain her excitement and told every stranger that walked by. Fast forward to 20 weeks pregnant and Emily and Rocky learned the gender of their twin babies, a boy and a girl!!! To celebrate, Emily brought gender suckers to all her college classes so all her peers could share in her excitement as she announced the genders; Logan and Lilly were on their way.
A seemingly perfect twin pregnancy lead to an induction on July 13th, 2011. Emily was 38 weeks and very ready to meet her babies.
When Emily was 6cm I drove the 30 minutes from my home in Provo, Utah to meet her at the hospital in Payson.
Upon arriving to the hospital to photograph the twins birth, everything was going perfectly. Emily had already received her epidural and was resting comfortably.
This is Emily’s beautiful mom, Diana, who unexpectedly passed away when the twins were 2.
*I’ve just recently added this into the post because I think it’s important to remember her presence. *
Emily’s mom was always right by her side.
After over 24 hours of labor, Emily was stuck at 8 cm dilated and was faced with the decision to have a c-section or wait it out a few more hours, risking an infection. Her and her husband took it to the lord and felt that a c-section was the best thing for her and the twins.
Within minutes of this decision, Lilly’s heart rate monitor read 48 and they rushed Emily and the babies into the operating room to perform an emergency c-section. I quickly pulled a nurse to the side and permission to stand outside the operating room to photograph the birth through a glass window.
As Emily’s mother and I stood by waiting for the arrival of these precious babies, seconds turned to minutes as they struggled to get Lilly out.
After 17 long minutes, they were finally able to get her heart beating again and eventually it was beating by itself. Throughout the morning you couldn’t walk by a doctor or nurse who wasn’t distraught and crying.
Lilly was alive but her outcome was unknown. She would have to be life flighted to Primary Children’s Hospital in Salt Lake City, Utah where she would undergo various treatments and observations.
After Emily woke up from the anesthesia, Rocky and the doctors slowly broke the news of Lilly’s condition. Before taking Lilly, they brought her into the room and allowed Emily to meet her daughter and say goodbye. Tears streamed down the faces of family, friends, and doctors as we listened to Lilly’s dad give her what will likely be the first of many priesthood blessings.
(Don’t worry, keep reading on and I will have a happy update of Lilly)
At the time I was so lost on what to do. I felt that staying for such a private event was an intrusion, but I knew that coming out of the anesthesia, Emily wouldn’t remember much without my birth story pictures… so I decided to hold back the tears and continue shooting.
After Lilly was life flighted, Rocky, was able to go see Logan.
Rocky pushing Logan past Emily’s OB as she takes a break on the couch and Emily meeting Logan for the first time.
Lilly is now doing great and you can follow her story here
, on the Facebook page I setup for her and Emily.
If you were touched by this post, please use the share button below to help spread Lilly’s story!
If you’d like to donate to help Lilly (she’s currently raising money to help get a SleepSafe Bed), please click here. All donations $10 and above will receive one of these awesome Prayers for Lilly Cerebral Palsy Awareness bracelets.
For those of you who are photographers, I will be doing a follow up post on vicarious trauma and how to cope when faced with situations such as this.
Farner Photography is based out of Salt Lake City, Utah and serves maternity, birth and newborn clients across the Wasatch Front.
If you’re interested in booking your Utah Birth Story or to purchase a gift certificate for an expecting friend, please contact us at