The first baby I ever helped deliver was in Woodward, a tiny town with a tiny hospital in the panhandle of Oklahoma, where there are more oil derricks than trees. I was a third year medical student on a family practice rotation. When I heard that the doctor I was assigned to had a patient in labor, I was ecstatic over the thought of even seeing a birth. As the baby crowned, the doctor asked me to take over. With the patient’s permission and the careful guidance of the attending, I stepped up to the plate to catch the baby. I went through the maneuvers that I had practiced a million times on models and despite being crazy nervous, successfully delivered a happy and healthy baby girl. Later that night, as sleep eluded me, I played the scene over and over in my head, enamored with the entire process, incredulous that I had been given the opportunity to be a part of such a miracle.
That was twelve years and a lot of babies ago.
I had a similar experience yesterday. I was privileged to be a part of a beautiful birth. As the baby came out healthy and screaming, the parents were overwhelmed with love for their new baby. The entire staff was grinning and crying from the contagious joy exuding from these new parents. The parents were so THANKFUL for the gift of their child.
While every birth is a miracle, some elements of my job can be less than spectacular. The long hours and paperwork wear on my nerves. And as I mentioned last week, I’ve been handing out a lot of bad news lately.
This birth reminded me what an AMAZING privilege it is to help bring life into this world. I am reminded not to take this calling for granted. It made me THANKFUL for God’s love for me, His daughter.
Last night as I drove home, I had that same silly grin on my face as when I drove home from my first delivery 12 years ago. Something tells me that 12 years from now, I will still be finding the joy in the miracle of life.
How have you been touched by the incredible miracle of life?