T H A T   F I R S T   B R E A T H
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Together with Premma Kandasamy and Padmanathan, the world welcomed Prathanna Padmanathan on January 25th, 2009 at 6.41am, weighing 3.55kg at the HUKM - Hospital Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (National University Hospital of Malaysia) in Kuala Lumpur.

 

Prathanna's story is heartwarming. Each of the photograph above details the timeline of what happened, from waiting over 9 hours for the delivery, to having the baby be placed in ICU, rendering the shoot on hold for a few days, to a lovely ending of the series. 

 

All photographs taken using Canon EOS 1N with Ilford HP5+ B/W Film. Processing by Morpheuse Esquire. Click on the images below to expand with further details.

 

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January 24th - 9pm
January 24th - 9pm

Received a call from Padmanathan, the father-to-be. Premma, the mother, was having her contraptions since morning and admitted to the hospital at approximately 8pm. Requested to be on standby. At 10pm, Premma transferred to delivery ward. Update sent via sms. Grabbed my gears. © Evan Hwong Photographs

11pm
11pm

Arrived HUKM - Hospital Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (National University Hospital of Malaysia). 11.30pm - Met Premma & Padma's relatives, and had a quick talk with Padma on what's going to happen. © Evan Hwong Photographs

January 25th - 12am
January 25th - 12am

The waiting game was unbearable even after a couple of hours. We only had the metal chair to sit on throughout the whole time. © Evan Hwong Photographs

12.15am
12.15am

Walked outside for a breather looking for a vending machine or somewhere to get coffee. Didn't find any. I should've packed some drinks. Fireworks in the distance as the Chinese celebrated the first day of the Chinese Lunar New Year. © Evan Hwong Photographs

2am
2am

Padma came out from the ward saying it may take a while; Premma's cervix was not ready yet as they have opted for natural birth. Do note that she was already over a week and a half overdue. 3am - Gave up looking for something to drink - went for tap water. 4am - A somewhat distraught and anxious Padma appeared again to check if I'm still good to go. It has been 7 hours of waiting. I gave the thumbsup. © Evan Hwong Photographs

5.40am
5.40am

Doctor announced they will have to do a Cesarean section fearing the baby's defecating in the womb. I sensed everybody's patience was wearing thin as things got dragged on almost till sunrise. © Evan Hwong Photographs

6.41am
6.41am

Baby Prathanna successfully delivered. Mother was wheeled out from the ward first. © Evan Hwong Photographs

7am
7am

Premma was wheeled out to the corridor to wait for the baby to come out. © Evan Hwong Photographs

8.05am
8.05am

Baby taken out from nursery - note the time since delivery at 6.41am. Something's not right... © Evan Hwong Photographs

8.10am
8.10am

Padma's anxious. Premma's exhausted. © Evan Hwong Photographs

8.20am
8.20am

Premma finally wheeled out from OR and reunited with baby. © Evan Hwong Photographs

8.21am
8.21am

First bond. © Evan Hwong Photographs

8.30am
8.30am

Premma and baby taken up to their private ward to have their vitals checked. © Evan Hwong Photographs

8.35am
8.35am

Something was amiss and baby had to be placed in another nursery for further checkup. © Evan Hwong Photographs

8.37am
8.37am

While the baby was placed under observation, Padma began texting other relatives on updates. © Evan Hwong Photographs

8.40am
8.40am

Premma finally being placed in her own private ward, separated from baby, while Padma unpacked. © Evan Hwong Photographs

8.45am
8.45am

8.45am - Checks revealed baby has difficulty breathing; 5% lower than normal rate. © Evan Hwong Photographs

10.45am
10.45am

Note the time. Doctor confirmed baby had hypothermia and will be transferred to the ICU to be monitored until conditions improved. Prathanna was placed under a heat sensor. Nurses tried to feed her but she wasn't sucking on the bottle. 11am - Shoot had to be put on hold. © Evan Hwong Photographs

January 29th - 8pm
January 29th - 8pm

Four days later, baby Prathanna was discharged after 3 days in the ICU. Shoot continued and completed at their residence between 9pm to 10pm. I told the father to wear back what he wore that day in the hospital for this. © Evan Hwong Photographs

Baby and mother are in good health since. © Evan Hwong Photographs

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