Excerpt from my journal – April 30, 2009
“Today I saw the most beautiful newborn baby. He appeared perfect. Ten fingers, ten toes. His face, with lips that were full like a cherub, seemed filled with the promise of many tomorrows. His arms and legs, tiny as they were, bent gracefully as he was dressed in a gown and hat by members of the nursing staff. The fabric was soft and white, edged in miniscule lace, and, against his reddish coloring, made him look robust.
Two nurses with the very gentlest of hands cared for this child. His weight in ounces and his length a mere few inches received their attention and care, the same as a robust squalling newborn.
Seeing him in the bassinet, wrapped in a white blanket, I could only imagine the love that would fill the hearts of his family as they looked at him.”
Over the years, I have watched the team of volunteers from Rochester Methodist Hospital (RMH) create dozens of tiny gowns and bonnets, blankets and memory envelopes. Until that day in April of 2009, I had never seen a recipient of their work: a family whose baby was born too early, a family who would hold their precious newborn briefly and then grieve for the life not to be fulfilled.
The handiwork of the RMH volunteers helped create the caring and dignity that was provided by the nursing staff for that tiny baby and his family.