We say so often in this world that it is a matter of LIFE and DEATH.

Well yes, it is.

Yesterday, I ushered out of this world a new soul who drew her first and last breath in the span of one…..single…..day.

She was fragile and delicate with a transparent elfin beauty that surprised her expectant parents.  She stared into this new world as she struggled to raise a tiny cry and then……she was gone.

Death.

And as I guided her parents through their first diaper change and showed them how to swaddle their dying babe; as we washed her pale and lifeless body and carefully dressed her one last time WE were living.

Life.

In my profession, I have borne witness to the vagaries of the human condition.  The ramifications of a duplicated gene here, a missing one there, first trimester deficiencies or unfettered drug and alcohol abuse.  From missing jaws and limbs to eyes and balloon like skulls; intestines grown hot and steamy outside pale and tender abdomens to gelatinous miracles that pay testament to the brilliance of modern medicine.

However, what I am brilliantly failing to say is that even the experience of death is life.

Those parents, their baby, that moment in time; that DEATH is a part of my LIFE forever.

And so in the end, I hugged them tightly to me, told them what wonderful parents they were and then quietly left with their shattered hopes and dreams.

I slipped that tiny body into its plastic encasement and watched and waited silently for one last breath that never came before I slowly zipped it closed.

And then I left.

To live.

 

 

 

 

 

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s