This New York Times video is a really beautiful recounting of a woman who births a stillborn baby. She describes the moments when she has to let his body go.
They give you a time to sit with the baby and hold the baby. We had Alexander for about four hours but we...had to give him...give him away. And this is still my baby and I'm giving it to a total stranger who is now going to put this baby on this cold-looking metal. It was racket-y and making a lot of noise and you just heard metal clicking on metal. And this is the last time I'm going to see my child.
Stories like this reaffirm my belief that we should spend as much time with the body as we need. What possible reason could there be to take him away except for the convenience of the hospital or funeral home. Imagine how much she could have benefited by holding her baby until she was ready to let go. Or better still, taking him home and caring for his body there. No strangers to handle him. No cold metal. Just the warm embrace of his mother and father until he is laid to rest. It reminds me of the video I watched that sparked my desire to do this work. In this video Adeleida's parents explain why they decided to keep her with them until she was buried.