I had given birth twice before with the help of midwives in a hospital setting. This birth was different. On Sakeena’s Birth Day, the two moments that most vividly replays in my mind and heart are:

Half an hour before Sakeena was born, during my last hour of intense labor, Katherine was by my side, comforting me with encouraging words, soothing me with her touch to ease and relax me. She was so synced to my needs, I didn’t have to explain much.  On one side was my husband, and on the other, she was there.

Once Katherine helped to deliver Sakeena and took care of my medical needs, she so lovingly, compassionately performed the newborn check, changed Sakeena’s first diaper, dressed her, warmed her carseat, and gently placed her in it for her very first departure. It was almost poetic, one of the sweetest experiences ever. During her exam, Sakeena made a surprisingly loud sound that my husband and I both laughed at, because, well, we were her parents.  I can’t forget Katherine’s smile and loving laugh, as if she had been with Sakeena all this time, and grown a love for her just as I did.

There are kinships other than lineage. Friends, neighbors, and classmates can fall into this category.  Well, I include midwives. Even if I might never see them again.

At my last post-partum appointment, I was genuinely sad. As we embraced, I walked away with a sinking feeling in my heart, because I knew this was where the road forked, and we would be going our separate ways. I’ve never felt that way about any other medical practitioner before.

In my prenatal care, labor, delivery, as well as post-partum care, Katherine connected with me by listening; in fact, most of the appointment consisted of her listening to what was going on in my life, showing that she genuinely cares. She addressed my concerns and anxieties, reassured me of my fortitude, and proved herself to be medically knowledgeable. If something was outside her scope, she didn’t hesitate to consult. Above all, her compassion with me during one of my most vulnerable moments stands out; it is this compassion that drives her to achieve excellence in the care that she provides.

Nazihah نزيهة