Sunday, June 21, 2009

Goodbye to the Birth Center

Michael and I attended the Peace Health Nurse Midwifery Birth Center farewell gathering today. The house that has seen the births of so many babies, including Sage, is closing, and the property is being sold. The midwives will continue to operate out of a hospital until the opening of a new birth center next spring.

It is sad for us to see the center close. We have had wonderful prenatal care there for both pregnancies, and Sage was born there. After his birth, I went there almost every week for the Well Baby Clinic, where I got to know other mom's and babies, had Sage weighed, and got breastfeeding advice from the lactation consultants.

Today, Michael and I were able to spend a little time in the room where Sage was born, just remembering and honoring how sacred this place is to us. We always imagined bringing our children there and saying, "This is the room where you were born."

Also, because we don't have a gravesite where we visit Sage, we saw the Birth Center as a place to connect with our memories of him. It is where we held him for the very first time.

Here is a photo of us with our extraordinary midwife, Chris Heritage. Chris has been a touchstone for us during the profound experiences of birth and death. Her compassion and genuine care go beyond anything we have ever experienced from a health care provider.

The one consolation we have as we say goodbye to the Birth Center is that we will be able to continue working with Chris and the other midwives, and even though our next birth will be in a hospital, we know they will provide us with the same high quality of care.

Blessings to all the parents, babies and professionals whose love and tears and courage gave the Birth Center its spirit.

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