Hi and welcome to my blog.
This is the place where you will find sneak peeks from my sessions and lots of updates from my own family life.

Please drop by often for the latest, specials and other fun stuff!

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~Keila June

Jaydon 3 months - Keila June Photography

Jaydon Marley's Birth

When I was a young girl, my biggest dream and prayer was to experience pregnancy and become a mommy. Boy did God answer my prayer... three times over! Not only that, he gave me the most amazing man to join me in this adventure!! :)

I was inexperienced for my first labor/delivery and didn't know what to expect.  And like everyone else, I was taught to be scared of childbirth, because hey... it hurts like heck, right?  But thankfully everything went smoothly even when given pitocin and an epidural.

My second baby came out like a bullet a year and a half later!  But this second birth was so fast 2.5 hrs from start to finish, I was scared to death of the pain and begged for an epidural but it was too late! So I did have him unmedicated all-natural, but I screamed for most of my laboring with fear. We thought we were done, we had a beautiful little girl and a healthy little boy!

Well... surprise, surprise... 5 years later, God wanted to grant me another wish!! To have a truly natural and unmedicated birth, the way I thought it was meant to be experienced. You see, I really tried to educate myself on the subject, and I wanted to see where I had gone wrong with my birthing experiences.

I've since heard of women having a pain free birth.  I was confused... how so?  Then my searching began!!!  That's when I stumbled upon hypnobirthing, along with other encouraging sites/blogs and FB pages, such as Skeptical Mother, Birth Without Fear, etc.
It immediately clicked: "That's it! I know I got this, my body was made to birth, I trusted my body's ability to do so - it's how God designed it.  I wanted to stay focused, relaxed, and in control.  And of course, experience as little pain as possible."
So I started reading the affirmations in hypnobirthing sites and it all made sense to me...  Some people, including my mother, thought I was a little nuts for being EXCITED for the upcoming labor and finally the delivery of my baby boy.  Honestly, I just couldn't wait to truly experience this one last time!!! :D

So for the story....

On the evening before I went into labor, I had some J. Alexander's mac & cheese at 10pm for a snack... and by 1am, I thought I had food poisoning!!!!! I was so queasy, and had the most awful runs!  Turned out the mac & cheese wasn't to blame at all... I thought, let me just fall asleep and hopefully this icky feeling will be gone by the morning.

Yeah right!

Just as I started drifting off to sleep, I had a massive contraction!!! So, holding on to the dressers and walls (and my breath!), I rushed to the bathroom at 2am.  There came another contraction, and another, and another.  I still didn't think much of it. Full blown denial still :)

Being that it was in the middle of the night, I didn't want to start waking people up with a "false alarm".

About a half hour later, I went to the bathroom for the 22nd time (lol), only to discover what a "bloody show" looks like.  That's when I woke up my husband and told him, "Call my parents!! And Brooke (my photographer and close friend), and my OB....  like RIGHT NOW!"  I KNEW we were going to have a baby!  And very soon actually!! I felt rushed suddenly.

I waited for my parents to arrive and they took the kids in their car, while my sister and my husband enjoyed their little ride to the hospital with a laboring woman in the car! hahaha  ;)

But believe it or not, it wasn't so bad for them, I breathed calmly through it all.  My sister was timing me and my surges were 1-2 minutes apart!  I was relaxed and happy that with each surge I was one step closer to meeting my baby.

Did I say how relaxed I was yet???

Totally cool and collected!  And honestly, I was finally beginning to understand what they mean by "pain free".  You see, if you FEAR labor, you will tense up and experience PAIN caused by the constrictor hormones, making labor longer and more intense.  If you learn to relax deeply and enjoy the ride, you release more endorphins, the "feel good" hormone.  So although it wasn't totally painless, I definitely felt calm and safe, making me only feel "sensations" in my body, and not technically "pain".

{P.S. Swaying my hips REALLY helped open up! And my ball, oh how I love that ball! LOL}

After I checked in to the hospital (around 4:45am), I was surrounded by my whole family.  I felt the support and love all around me.   They checked me and I was 7-8cm!! "Woah!!"  I thought.  So I just kept swaying my hips side to side and barely made a sound.  Just breathing deeply through those sensations.  I was so calm in between surges, I could literally fall ASLEEP!!!!

But then... I threw up... four times!  Who knows why, but I kept trusting my body to do what it had to. (I was just told that this is a sign of transition, you see!!)  So I laid down as I was told, to clean the mess off my legs and feet.  And sadly, from there I didn't want to move anymore.  My OB arrived and gave me some counter-pressure massage on my lower back.  That, my friends, felt heavenly!!  They soon checked me and I was fully dilated with my water still in tact!!

But there seemed to be a problem, and I think it had to do with my position.  I'm pretty sure if I were standing/squatting this baby would've came out a lot faster than he did.  My doctor kept asking if I was pushing, or if I needed to push.  But no.  I wasn't.  Laying there, fully dilated and not feeling the baby come down.  That's when I told everyone to "shut up" (or so they said) lol.... this part took a while.  And I kind of panicked since I didn't think I was progressing anymore.

I prayed.  I asked God to continue giving me strength and PEACE.  I also kept talking to my baby, and I told him "Soon baby - soon this will be over.  Hang in there, I know you're working really hard too.  I can't wait to meet you!"

Maybe like 45 minutes went by, and I was still laying there fully dilated. :\

Well then it came... lots of pressure, lots of pain on my bottom, and a sudden INVOLUNTARY urge to push, so I went with it!  I wanted to stop and breathe, but my body didn't let me.  It was pushing ALL on its own, I couldn't believe it!!! The sensation was out of this world.  So with that one strong push, there he was, his little head was out!!! Everyone said "Look! There he is!"

At this point my doctor gave me the best gift of all!  She told me to touch his head and with that, I felt another totally involuntary push coming from my core.  With her help, I found my way under his arms and PULLED MY BABY TO MY CHEST.... OH MAN!!  This was the most incredible and empowering experience ever!!!  I had done it!!

The feeling of my son's body on top of mine was refreshing.  I was so relieved.  I lost track of time and didn't know where I was.  Pure bliss!  I was enjoying feeling his very warm skin, the top of his head, smelling him, and admiring his curly blonde hair.  Waiting for that moment when he opened his eyes for the very. first. time..... I just wanted to freeze that moment forever.  I was in love and knew this little boy completed our family!

What a MIRACLE.  The whole process is a miracle.  Don't you agree?

So as the sun rose and lit up our room, everyone was sleepy from breaking night.  Not me.  I was on a high.  LOL I got up and started taking pictures (the photographer in me couldn't stop me).  My husband took over my bed (as he usually does), so it's not like I had a choice.  But I was feeling incredible!!  I had some friends and visitors stop in, and Brooke too - to edit some of the pictures of course!! hahaha

It was like I never even gave birth 3 hours earlier. :)

Sure, I had my doubts during pregnancy.
What if the baby wasn't in a favorable position, or breech? What if I didn't go into labor on my own... or by the "famous" 40wk mark?   What if, what if, what if... but I kept surrounding myself with positive stories and pushed all else aside.  And mostly, I kept trusting God.

I didn't follow hypnobirthing to a T.  I only used what I thought was useful for me to manage pain.  And it really worked.  My mom even said, "you had everyone fooled towards the end, we couldn't tell if you were still in labor or ready to push...." I was practically sleeping in between!

I'm actually hoping that my experience can help someone... even if it's just ONE other mama out there. It can be done!  And it can be done in a hospital too ;) ;) ;)  One important tip is if you're not into home birthing, then you need to find a family friendly hospital where they encourage natural labors, breastfeeding, rooming in, etc, etc... and the hospital/center I went to was a true blessing along the way.

Our first family photo, taken a few minutes after Jaydon joined our crazy crew!!

Here's a 10 minute slideshow with TONS more photos!

Jaydon Marley's Birth Story in Photos from Keila Gonzalez on Vimeo.

Jaydon 2 months - Keila June Photography

Jaydon Growing Bub - Keila June Photogrphy

And some loving from Big Bro!

Transformation Tuesday - Keila June Photography

Sydney - Keila June Photography

Sydney was such a natural in front of the camera!! <3 Mama said she might go into modeling... I couldn't agree more.

Rapha & Julia - Keila June Photography

Sweet and Stunning Siblings, Rapha and Julia <3 I have been feeling VERY pregnant lately but this duo was totally worth the running around and squatting! :)

Ryan - Keila June Photography

This is little family was just amazing!  Super fun and relaxed with the sweetest boy ever!!  I truly enjoyed hanging out with them!!!!!


Here's a quick look at the whole process of my work.... behind the scenes, a straight from camera image and after the final product...

Sienna - Keila June Photography

This amazing little girl is the fourth daughter of fellow photographer Marissa Johnson!
She was so sweet while letting me pose her during "beachy" conditions... you know because we all love the wind and sand! ha!  But at least the ocean waves were the best white noise ever! <3

Jake & Abbey {TWINS} - Keila June Photography

Happy 2nd birthday to these gorgeous twinsies!!!

How adorable are these two??? Seriously, I totally melted when I laid eyes on them!!!!


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