We had the good fortune of connecting with Danica Donnelly and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Danica, how does your business help the community?
We’ve had this message in culture that birth is something to be afraid of, “the worst pain you’ll ever experience”, an experience that should be medicated, numbed, a horror that we wouldn’t possibly want to experience. And that message in culture, in media, is damaging. And untrue. I bought into this message from movies I saw. I was terrified of birth. When I attended my first birth 10 years ago, it revolutionized my world. The moment I entered the home where this woman was laboring, I knew I had entered a sacred space. I knew there was magic here. And when I left that birth, I left with a feeling that if everyone in the whole world could see how beautiful birth is meant to be, they would be transformed, like I was, to see the innate value in every person, the miracle it is that any of us exist. I knew I needed to share these birth stories with the world so that people can see that our bodies were uniquely designed to create babies and to birth babies. I wanted women to feel empowered to experience the fullness of their births instead of being so afraid of the pain that they wanted to be drugged up to the point that they didn’t even remember it. My birth photography and my family bonding photography exists to help people honor the beauty in real life because I believe that difficult things are worth celebrating. Difficult things make us stronger; they make us more resilient; they give us perspective and appreciation; and they foster a deeper connection with our loved ones. If we moved TOWARDS pain and challenges instead of running from them or trying to numb ourselves, we would be stronger as individuals, more connected as communities, more understanding of our humanity and the humanity of others, more compassionate towards people who are different from us. If we could embrace the struggle of this life, we could come to a place of communal healing and rebirth. We could live together more peacefully. And ultimately, isn’t that what we all want?
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I embrace the realness of life, the raw emotion, the deep vulnerability of life. That’s when we are truly living. It has taken me a lot of time, education, mentorship, and making mistakes to get to where I am in business and in life, and I wouldn’t trade that for an easy path. Pushing through the challenges has made me a better person and has developed the strength in my business as well.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
I would take them on a relaxed vacation to Joyful Journeys, a peaceful little oasis in the middle of nowhere Colorado. We would spend a few days sleeping in a yurt, relaxing in the hot springs and gazing at the mountains. Then we would climb some sand dunes, get some dinner and drinks at Crystal Park Cantina and drink from the fountains of healing in Manitou Springs.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Jesh De Rox has been an influential mentor in my life and my business
Photos by me, Danica Donnelly