There is a great story about a natural labor over at Dooce. In part 2 she is talking about her assistant who just had a baby. She had a bunch of people in the labour room being completetly silent between contractions and then jumping into action and cheering and helping during the contractions.
The cheering and pushing and growling continue for what seems like a couple of minutes, what must have seemed like eternity for Katey, and when it’s apparent that the contraction has ended, the room immediately sinks right back into silence. No one talks. Every single person is focused on Katey’s next move.
And that is when I got completely choked up. I can’t believe that everyone was so respectful of what she was experiencing. Can you imagine if through all of our hard times we had people around us who were silent in honor of our struggle and then jumped into action to help us when they could?
It reminds me of a true story I read about a Native American Vietnam Vet who came back from the war totally traumatized. When the people in his home town, on the reservation, saw how traumatized he was, they called their medicine man. He had everyone get their rattles and drums and they danced and sang and rattled around him for days until he was better. The whole village.