At my last birth there was very little English spoken: Portuguese is their native tongue. As a birth photographer it wasn’t an issue because I’m there to observe and document. But there was something magical about it. It was as if I was watching the most heart-felt movie on mute. The scenes were so moving and powerful that I didn’t yearn for the exact words.
The caress of a loved one’s hand. The loving touch only a mother can offer her daughter. The nourishment of a dinner given to “strangers”. The gracious offer of blankets and pillows. The grip and support during a contraction. The tears and gasps of exhaustion. The hushed words in a tone that could only be used for encouragement and compassion.
Only once did the Midwife ask someone to translate Raquel’s words. “She said, ‘I can’t do this.'” And Amy responded, “Tell her when she doesn’t think she can any longer, that’s right before she will do it.”
And a few minutes later, Raquel and Andres were holding their son. The same hands that offered compassion and strength were now holding new life.
You don’t need to understand the conversation to know the entire room was deeply in love with the baby and in awe of his mother.
It’s the universal language of birth: love and awe.
Bem vindo ao mundo pequenino.