Thursday, July 31, 2008

Comment on Babies and How We Carry Them

From my journal of some years back written as I sit in a hospital waiting room:

I think I've seen three of them this evening...those handy carryalls with handles that people use these days to carry their infants. I think they are a car seat maybe. When you get out of the car you just invert the handle and carry it like a basket. You go striding down the street and carry this basket wherein lies your newborn. I think to myself that this kinda makes the baby a "thing". You when you used to carry a newborn you carried him/her bundled up in your arms, tucked in close to your heart and where you could reach out your hand and pat the the tiny face or tuck the blanket, where eyes could meet eyes, where a quick duck of the head could plant a kiss on new baby-skin forehead or cheek. Where you could gently tickle forth a smile. Or whatever other delight awaits when you hold a new baby. But now...with this just carry a basket at knee level and baby's eyes see no mother's smile. Instead, there are blue-jean knees and maybe a friendly doggy face as you walk down the sidewalk.

It seems so impersonal.

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