In the New York Times via Metafilter:
Living With a Dying Baby. “Families can choreograph their child’s very brief life with their family . . . Sometimes they may have a matter of minutes, so they decide beforehand who can hold the baby, who will cut the umbilical cord, who will hold the baby when you know he is going to die.”
Comment from MeFi thread:
My son died 25 hours after he was born and I was too angry, too horrified by what had happened to hold him while he was still alive. My ex-husband went to the nursery and held him. When the nurses offered to take his picture, I said “No.” Then he died. My mother, 2000 miles away, had called several times during the three days I was in labor. When she heard her first grandchild was not expected to live, she took the first plane to California, but arrived too late. she talked to the nurses and they brought his little body into my room. She and then I held him. I was glad she had insisted.