Friday, April 19, 2013

The "Rescuing Hug"

The "Rescuing Hug" was discussed in the Taegu Diocese Bulletin this past week, as it recounted the story, originally appearing in the American press many years ago, of twin baby girls, Kyrie and Brielle, born prematurely and each weighing about one kilogram. It's a story that is sure to touch the hearts of many in Taegu this week.

The twin sisters were put in incubators, but Brielle was not doing well, her heart was weak and she was not putting on weight like Kyrie, the sister born first. It looked like Brielle was not going to make it. The nurse taking care of them suggested to the doctor that they be put in the same incubator, since they were together in the womb. Though not permitted by hospital rules, the doctor gave his permission.

Now together in the incubator, the first born twin put her arms around her sister, astonishing those who saw it and, miracle-like, her vital signs--breathing and blood pressure--soon began to improve. It was not long before Brielle recovered completely.

Premature twins are usually placed in separate incubators, but after this incident, co-bedding for multiple birth babies became the standard procedure in this hospital, the practice soon spreading to other hospitals.

Many similar stories documenting the healing power of human touch can be found in many parts of the world. Babies who lost their parents and were put in hospitals in years past, receiving no loving care, would often die, and even if they managed to live, we are told the integrity of the adult personality was seriously affected.  
The bulletin article recommends that we also reach out to others by offering a healing touch whenever appropriate. A hug, a reassuring tap on the shoulder or arm, a handshake--all show a loving concern for the other. This show of human warmth and love, judging by the many remarkable healings that have resulted from such simple gestures, may at times be more important than medical help.