Thanksgiving Eve, 2012...7 months since this blog came to life. I find myself overwhelmed with gratitude on so many levels, that it's difficult to know where to begin. At the risk of sounding like an award speech, I'd like to express my thanks to the people who have been on my mind the most in recent weeks and months...
I'd like to thank our readers, first and foremost, for listening to what we have to share with the world, and working with us to make a difference. Without you there is no blog, and more importantly, there is not movement toward safer midwifery in this great State (and elsewhere). Thank you for caring, for reading, for sharing, and for helping others understand the complexity of the issues we address here.
I'd like to thank the other members of Safer Midwifery's advocacy group. I'm forever grateful for your insight, your time, and your hard work on making our projects a success. Without your participation, encouragement, and help, none of the great changes we're witnessing would ever get off the ground.
I'd like to thank every mother who has suffered loss or injury for sharing her story. I know personally how difficult that decision can be. Your courage and strength have honored your babies well, and will work to make a difference for others.
I'd like to thank every doula, midwife, and apprentice who has reached out to share their own stories and concerns. Your experiences and insight are the most important in advocating for higher standards within your own profession. You know first hand what is going on around you. Having the courage to come forward, share your ideas, and work with us to advocate on behalf of mothers and babies is truly remarkable. Although your voices are often anonymous, they are being heard.
I'd like to thank every State official, investigator, lawyer, and legislator who has taken the time to read our letters, take our phone calls, listen to our concerns, meet with us in person, and take action. You are our leadership. We are so grateful for the opportunity to communicate our experiences with you to better help you understand the need for better safety measures.
I'd like to thank every physician & EMT who has had to witness repeated preventable deaths, and worked hard to save lives, even when they could not be saved. These are also the physicians advocating for natural birth in hospitals, and working to make changes happen so women have safer alternatives. Thank you for your voices and your actions to improve the state of things on both large and small scales.
I'd like to thank my extended family, friends, and especially my mom for their love and support. My mom has been with us ever step of the way, supporting us even when she didn't understand. She never grows tired of talking when we need to talk, and never tells us we should get over the loss of our son. You have been the steadfast support person through all of us, even while finding your way through your own grief, and for that we are enormously grateful.
I'd like to thank my husband for his tireless support, his listening ear, his encouragement, his ideas, his perspective, and his love for every member of our family. It has not been an easy journey the past year and a half, be I'm proud that we've walked it together every single step of the way.
I'd like to thank Jonah too for being resilient, patient, and loving...for asking questions, for trying to make sense of things that cannot make sense, and for always finding a way to make me laugh.
And last, but certainly not least, I have to say how grateful I am for Magnus. It moves me still, to think about how an infant, only on earth for 13 days, can touch so many lives in such profound ways. What I've learned from Magnus in the past year and a half, is more than I've learned in my previous 32 years put together. The way I see his love, and our love for him, reaching others is incredible. He leads us forward. It's Magnus that helps us realize that life is more than the number of days or years spent on this earth. It is because of him that we will continue to fight for truth, and safer options in midwifery. No human being deserves what he went through, but every human being should know his story, and that of so many others. I am thankful for the friends, the support, the encouragement, and the opportunity to make a difference for other families. There is no better way to express Magnus's love and life to the world.