As a wide eyed, brand new nurse, I joined the Woman’s Labor and Delivery team in the beginning of 2006. Soon after starting, I knew I had found my niche. Every day, I was in awe of the birth process and enjoyed the opportunity to welcome women into motherhood as they welcomed their new babies into the world. Now, I will fully admit that as a 24-year-old with no children of her own, I wasn’t fully aware of the magnitude of my job and the responsibility I was charged with: being one of the first people to introduce these women into motherhood.
In the summer of 2010, I found out that I was pregnant! It wasn’t something my soon-to-be husband and I were expecting, but it was a very exciting, welcomed blessing. I won’t say I wasn’t scared, I completely was. Even after years of witnessing women give birth, I was a completely terrified! I had so many fears and worries and concerns. A few months earlier, I had a broken ankle that led to a life-threatening pulmonary embolism. Because of this, I was on medications that could be very dangerous to a fetus. My mind was racing with different possible scenarios. But, with the love and support of our family, friends and my dear coworkers, I hoped for the best. My mind was finally at ease after the first ultrasound showed that our baby was fine. However, the following months during pregnancy were not easy.
I continued to work throughout my pregnancy because I never wanted to miss an opportunity to marvel at how resilient a pregnant woman really is. Seeing these women literally push their way into motherhood helped push me through my complications. While pregnant, I was hospitalized at six weeks for a kidney infection, and again at 24 weeks due to kidney stones. In addition, I was injecting myself daily with blood thinners to prevent another pulmonary embolism. With every passing week and new hurdle crossed, I began to fully understand just how much work and how big a responsibility it is to grow and care for a tiny human inside of you.
My delivery came much earlier than anticipated. I had developed a serious complication of pregnancy called HELLP Syndrome (click here to learn more) and had to be medically induced at 34 weeks. While the 30-plus hours of labor are a complete blur, I remember that at 12:18 am on January 29, 2011, I officially became the mom of a perfect, tiny, baby boy. After they handed him to me, nothing else mattered, only him. In that exact moment, I was a mother! All the years of helping and assisting others were suddenly put into perspective as I realized that what I witnessed every day as a Labor and Delivery nurse was nothing short of a miracle.
It’s incredible to think that for 50 years, Woman’s Hospital has welcomed so many women like me into motherhood. It is a job that every employee takes seriously and takes pride in. And although how we welcome those women into motherhood has changed over the years, our commitment to providing the very best care through the most up-to-date and evidence-based practices has not. Woman’s is a women’s specialty hospital that truly is special! There is no other place like it. Day in and day out we strive to assist women truly have the very best birth day, as they meet their baby and officially enter motherhood.
No one is born knowing how to be a mom, it’s a journey that begins the moment we hold our baby for the first time and continues throughout the years to come. For the past 7 years, I’ve learned something new every day from my son. And while my pregnancy was difficult, it helped me become a better nurse by enabling me to be able to relate to my patients in a way that I could never before. It’s almost like we are part of some club- a mom’s club!
So on this day, Mother’s Day, we want to celebrate all of the moms out there! Regardless if you’re expecting, just had your first, had your third, or even if you’ve entered the world of being a grandmother, we wish you the happiest of days, today and every day.