Family Visits

Visits with a family and their newborn are a special time. There are tiny little moments that may pass unnoticed. Here are some I remember, even from many years ago.

I was the doula support for this mother and her partner. She had labored all through the dark, chilly winter night. In the morning sunlight, their child was born.

Her parents arrived at the hospital to meet their new grandson. This was the same hospital where her father had been born, where the mother had been born and now the third generation had arrived. Sitting by the window, her father holding the new baby, the mother realized …now he was a grandfather. Now she was the mother. She paused a moment and, with a few tears, they took a historic photo of the three of them on this very first birth day.

Another visit was with a family I’d met before. This was to help with their second baby. The mother and I reviewed some breastfeeding tweaks and then I made her son’s lunch. M. said she wanted to share something.

Sitting at the kitchen table, she started singing a song. It was one she had written for her first born, now for her second. It was just simple and lovely. I have forgotten the lyrics and the tune. What I do remember is her spontaneous singing, the toddler mashing his food, the infant nuzzled on her chest and the poetry of the moment.

There is fatigue and uncertainty in parenthood (even with your third) and there are moments like this. It’s true, it seems like the days are so long and yet the years pass so quickly. A wise proverb says, “There is no Happiness, only moments of happiness”. Pause and make a note of these small moments. String them together, like an elegant necklace, and reassure yourself with them.


Come to the “Patchwork of Parenting” storytelling event in Portland, ME, organized by the Maine State Breastfeeding Coalition. Saturday May 13th,2023.  An evening of heartfelt stories, 7-9 pm. $20.   Here’s what I wrote about last year’s event.