Labor & Delivery Nurse.
The one who learns about your birth plan and educates you on the labor process. The one who tells you that you’re strong and that you can do it, no matter how many times you say you’re done. The one who holds your hand and breaths through the contractions with you. The one who stays with you when the others leave and rubs your back and feeds you ice chips. The one who chases your baby with the monitor, finding heart tones and ensuring you get all the credit for those contractions. The one who speaks gently, yet firmly into your ear and tells you to push a little bit harder, to listen to your body and tells you that you’re safe. The one who celebrates you as we pull your baby out and place their goopy baby goodness on your chest. We embrace your happy tears, we say congratulations and we love on you and your little bundle. This is the miracle and honor of being a labor and delivery nurse~ the humbling privilege to help you walk through the process of pain that has a distinct purpose~ new life!
But this week…this week, my role as a labor and delivery nurse looked different. I still held her hand, I still fed her ice chips, I still rubbed her back and told her she was safe, but our process of pain was birthed from a different purpose. Full term, no heart beat. My heart sank. I watched that first-time mama grieve on the bed as she swallowed this news gripping her pregnant belly. The OR held our grief as we anticipated the delivery of a sleeping baby.
Oh, baby girl….I was the first ungloved hand to touch your skin. I cleaned you up and combed your hair. I put you in mama’s favorite outfit- the pink one with your name on it. I tucked you into warm blankets and fought back the warmth of tears as I prayed over you and prepared you to meet your family. I rolled you down that hallway and in to meet your daddy. I handed you to him and rubbed his back and told him how beautiful you are. Once mama was out of recovery, we brought you into her. We examined every part of your wonderfully made body and Mama said you have her chin. We cried and sat together and I’ve never been so aware of the gift of presence in those moments.
Oh, baby girl…your death taught us so much about life. You see, no amount of training could have prepared me to take care of your family. I hope I did it justice. Thank you for allowing me to get to know you.
Thank you for trusting me to take care of you.
Love always, your labor and delivery nurse🤍