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Holding Hands

The first day of spring. I am awoken as the phone rings, I grab it with one hand as I turn the clock with the other. Two o'clock am. "It is time" announces Dale,father to be, " We need you". Twenty minutes later I arrive, my arms and hands filled with soft bags packed with supplies.
Laying on a soft pad on the floor, a small heater keeping her bare skin warm, I see her body rise with the energy of the next contraction, opening, surrendering to the power within.I kneel down next to Sarah, first time mother to be. I place one hand on her forehead, the other in her hand. Holding it, connecting with her, letting her feel my deep faith and trust in the beauty of birth while reminding her I am with her. Speaking with my hands, words my mouth could not match. With woman. Midwife.
For twenty years, one thousand births and counting, my hands have caught babies fresh from the source of life. Now it is Sarah's turn. The hands on the clock point to 8'oclock in the morning. As baby Gabriel pushes his way out into my guiding hands, warm and wet,I feel him unfurl, open up, as the kiss of breath enters his body. Such a blessing to be intimate with this miracle, to see this baby open to life, eyes wide, lungs crying out, arms reaching, palms open, fingers spreading as I lay him down on Sarah's warm belly.
Her fingers, touching, gingerly, delicately his little hands. His hand clings to her finger. Mommys hand, the hand that will now hold him dearly, forever. Dale's hands, one hand caressing Sarah's cheek, his other hand wiping the tears that roll down his cheeks.I sit back, kneeling on the floor, my hands now resting, spent, on my thighs, waiting until they are needed again. I am relaxed as I revel in this moment, allowing this sacred moment to unfold as it will. Witnessing Gods Handiwork.
I have been given a gift. To be able to recieve life and give love with my hands.


Khushbu's picture


Dear Mel

This is an amazing portrayal of the great work you do....I have a huge admiration and respect for people like you who bring a new life in this world.

I love the way you have described the moment...


Khushbu Agrawal

jadefrank's picture

new, tiny hands

Hi Mel,

I was excited to read your My Story submission as I so enjoyed reading your last one on Land. I love this story as it's a beautiful intimate moment and celebration of life. Being a part of that experience for so many families must be an amazing feeling. Thank you for sharing this with us!

Warm regards,

Katie McDonald's picture


Hi Mel,

Thank you for sharing your story with us. What a privilege to be a part of such a magical moment.


Greta's picture

Absolutely Wonderful!

Wow! Thank you for writing this piece, and such a beautiful visual image on "holding hands". How fortunate you are to share in such powerful, tender, and magical moments. As a women with no children, I am very happy to read this wonderful piece and have a window into the celebration!

In Appreciation,

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