November 5, 2012


Fifteen years ago, in the very beginning of the day, in a room crowded with pillows, blankets, stuffed animals, diapers, wipes, bottles, cozy soft baby clothes, sleeping, messy-haired, drowsy, weepy, expectant brothers and sisters, one beautiful, tiny, snoozing infant twin boy, and two beyond exhausted, loving, shattered and grieving parents–we said goodbye to the tiniest members of our family. 

There was a crystallization of the intrinsic value of human life. Holding her. Experiencing her. Smelling her new baby smell, feeling her heart beat against my palm, her ribs expanding oh-just-slightly as she inhaled and exhaled– lungs and diaphragm working with each breath, touching her soft, translucent cheeks. Watching my parents rock her and will a longer life into her veins. Holding her adorable, tiny, tiny bottom in one hand, and her back in the other, the way you do with all babies. Looking in her eyes and wanting more than anything for her to understand one thing in that moment. 
That she was loved
Cherished. Precious.  Known. Seeing her entry and exit in the world. Ruth, with her pale, pale skin. Her sweet, quiet voice. Her broken heart. Her light-as-air frame. Her incredibly delicate, long arms, legs, fingers and toes. Her little rosebud mouth. Her tiny elf ears. Her funny, sparse, sticking-up-all-over, dark hair. 

 It has never been more obvious that behind all our randomly joining, "complex as a baked potato" cells and biological coincidences–that there is a process, a purpose, something more that far exceeds our knowledge of conception, embryonic development and personhood. So much so–that even when our definition of what is valuable or needed in the world, is so woefully not met. When someone is born broken or seemingly useless to society. Oh-such-a-burden. 

That, when we are forced stop,  see, experience, know that person; we cannot help but be silenced by our arrogance.

 Cannot help but be quiet, quiet in awe. 

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