Yesterday I was telling someone about my experience at the hospital when I delivered Andrew. Not about the labor and pushing and all that, but about the experience at the actual hospital. Overall it was a great experience. I remember we got a good parking spot, close to the main entrance. That was nice! When we walked into the lobby there were like a million people there and I remember the volunteers at the information counter were like 100 years old. Oh man, God bless them but word of advice to hospitals: Make sure your volunteers actually know something about hospitals, especially for women in labor. That was my only complaint. Once we were in our room and things were rolling, the journey began.
I’ve told numerous people how much I loved the nurses at the hospital. I think I had 5 or 6 different nurses throughout our 2 day stay and I’m embarrassed to say that I only remember one of their names. Pat. Oh, sweet Pat. She was older. Not old old, but like 50’s probably. My other nurses were younger. We’ll come back to Pat later as she was my last nurse before we left the hospital.
My first nurse was in our delivery room. I’m ashamed to say I don’t remember her much but it’s only because I was so out of it. You know, the whole “trying to get a baby out of me” sort of got in the way of our friendship. I do remember she was extremely calm. I was not calm. I was a mess, but she was nice and dealt with my irrational behavior quite well. After delivery we were supposed to move into the recovery room but I was very dehydrated and they were worried about me even standing so we stayed put for awhile. Another nurse took over and she was the one who helped me to the bathroom. I almost fainted by the time we got there so she walked me back to the bed and told me to rest awhile before trying to go to the bathroom again. They make you go to the bathroom after you deliver a baby; like, pretty soon after. It’s not as bad as people make it out to be though. Random: I had to force myself to pee for like a week after delivery. How weird is that? No one told me this could happen. I seriously had to remind myself to go because I never felt like I needed to pee, it was so weird. Anyway…
We eventually moved into the recovery room and another nurse took over once again. This is the nurse who helped me the most and I’m so sad that I don’t remember her name. It may have been Sarah… She had a very matter-of-fact personality but she was sweet as well. She was the one who began the breastfeeding journey with me. That first night, she stayed in our room for 2 hours helping me try to nurse Andrew and when it STILL didn’t work, she showed me how to use a pump. God I don’t miss that pump. I also remember her pushing on my tummy A LOT! No one told me about that either. A nurse pushes on your tummy every few hours to make sure they get all of the leftover baby junk out. Good description I know. I’m not sure what else to call it though. It doesn’t necessarily hurt when they do this, it’s just a little uncomfortable. Do you know that nurses also clean up all of the leftover baby junk once it comes out? How do people do this job? I laid there while she squished my tummy and literally changed my diaper. I’m a grown woman and I was so thankful for this. Again, so weird!
My next nurse came the next morning, I don’t really remember her too much. Then I think there was another nurse later that day and then Sarah came back that second night (let’s just call her Sarah even though I’m not sure that was indeed her name). The next day we met Pat. Pat was so sweet! We had a beautiful heart to heart and I remember it like it was yesterday. I was sitting in the hospital bed and I could feel myself start to lose it. I was so tired, so stressed out and my hormones were a mess. Pat walked in and simply asked how I was doing. I started sobbing. I couldn’t control myself. I was so embarrassed because I just couldn’t stop crying but Pat sat on the bed with me and talked me through it. I told her I was just overwhelmed with everything. We talked for a little while and the sweetest thing happened. Pat started crying, too. I was so surprised by this and I felt so horrible for making her sad. She said she was just happy to see me care so much. She told me she always knows when a woman is going home a good mom, and I was one of them. I’ll never forget that. Those words made me feel confident that I could go home and be a mom without the help of a nurse.
When we were leaving the hospital Pat came back into our room and handed me the tiniest and sweetest little baby hat. She said some of the women at the hospital crochet little hats to give to babies when they leave the hospital. It was teal and blue and Andrew wore it for a couple months. I thought that was the nicest little gift and I’ll keep it forever.
Our stay at that hospital was wonderful and I owe that wonderful experience to those nurses. I could never do what they do. I have no idea how they put up with hormonal new mommas, help them pee, change their diapers (okay it’s a pad but diaper sounds funny), help them nurse their newborn, deliver their meals, teach them how to burp the baby, teach them how to swaddle their baby…I could go on. They’re amazing and absolutely special, and I thank each one of them!