A love letter to L&D nurses
The more births I attend, the more I feel called to write this. At hospital births, nurses are often the ones in the room the most. They're responsible for many many medical tasks like taking vitals and administering medications. But I've also seen so many nurses at both St. Mary's and Meriter going above and beyond to really take care of people. They take over for me or a birth partner doing hip squeezes when our arms get tired. They set up the couch with sheets and blankets so a support person can take a nap. They give us the inside scoop on which hospital meals are delicious and which to avoid. They show us how to dim the lights in just the right way. They create pillow palaces for people with epidurals to make them as comfortable as possible and use peanut balls to help encourage babies to move down. They offer to bring in the squat bar and have great ideas for how to set up the bed in creative ways to facilitate different pushing positions. They bring in buckets of ice water and washcloths to help keep the laboring person cool. They are elbow-deep in the bathtub trying to adjust monitors rather than asking someone to get out of the tub. They assure someone with an unplanned c-section that they'll be right there in the OR by their side the whole time, and talk them through everything that's about to happen with love and kindness. They show new and exhausted parents how to breastfeed and swaddle and change a diaper. They tell me how happy they are that I'm there and that the laboring person has such great support. I've even had several nurses see me sleeping on the floor at a birth and wake me up with pillows and cushions and blankets just for me.
So to all the L&D Nurses out there - thank you. Your kindness and love is felt and makes such a difference.