Labor and Delivery Nurses

This is my Thank You letter to the amazing strangers that played an important role in our life.

Nurses Gift
We gave one to everyone who helped us: nurses, midwife, pediatrician, etc

To Nurses Helen, Jennifer, Rachel, Megan and Midwife (CNM) Susan with a special Thanks to Jamie who was with us for our first child,

You probably won’t remember us but I’ll always remember you. I was terrified with a nervous calm once I found out I would be going to Labor & Delivery the same day as my last NST (non stress test). I had an overall understanding about being induced, most of which I found out the day before, but the details were a mystery. You all played an important part in easing my fears, answering all of my questions and encouraging me.

No one pressured me to get an epidural. If I wanted an epidural you wouldn’t question me or make me feel bad about my decision. No one scared me about the intensity of contractions with pitocin. You told me what to expect with an induction including the pills and pitocin. No one made me feel like a baby when the pain finally took over. You all encouraged me and told me I could do it. You reminded me I could adjust the lights, have more pillows, move around or whatever else (within reason) would help me feel comfortable. You even answered additional medical questions that didn’t have much to do with labor and delivery.

The pain put a smile on my face because I knew it meant I’d meet my baby soon but I was still in pain. I was adamant about using the bathroom and rather than saying ‘No you’re too close’ our midwife reminded me the pressure could be baby trying to come and I should let her know immediately if I felt a bulge. Thankfully it wasn’t but right after she ASKED if she could check me. We were having issues with the baby monitor so a physical check was done. She warned it might be very painful, confirmed my consent to check and proceeded. This was it. The moment arrived.

I truly appreciated the bedside manner of everyone that surrounded us. I loved that despite losing it towards the end everyone was wonderful, reminding me I could do it, saying my reaction was perfectly normal and helping me cope pain med free. Post delivery they were having trouble getting bleeding to stop so pills were given (not orally…), stitches were quick and there was continuous intense pushing/ massaging on my abdomen until the pills kicked in to slow the bleeding. Though everyone was working fast, I was informed every step of the way because part of my birth preferences included being informed on what was going on. All in all the experience was great and I would give them all referrals if I could. But I can’t so hopefully this letter reaches one of them (or another awesome medical professional) to inform them of the positive impact they had on this mommy.

Thank you,

Journey to Mommy

My Simplified Delivery List

Motherhood Maternity Dress (snaps down the front and along the top for easy access)
Avia Socks
Mesh undies from hospital 😉

After my second delivery, I have a better grasp on what to bring to my particular hospital. These are items I found useful but this is by no means a list for everyone as your list will vary based on where you choose to give birth and what is available. For instance, my hospital provides diapers, nipple balm, plain cloths that you wet with water as wipes, tucks pads, numbing spray, extra pads (not a full pack but a few) and we both received gowns (sleep sack and nursing gown featuring hospitals logo) as well as other goodies.

  • Camera or Phone with chargers!!
  • Comfy Gown
  • Socks (to match gown)
  • Supportive nursing bra
  • Preferred pads (hospital pads are huge and don’t have wings)
  • Toothbrush & toothpaste (later discovered hospital had this too…)
  • Skincare (facial wipes and moisturizer)
  • Makeup (tinted moisturizer, chapstick and brow pencil)
  • Hair supplies or protective hairstyle (thankfully went to get hair braided day before so only needed a head scarf!)
  • Going home outfit for myself and baby
  • Additional: snacks for your support person, medical card/ insurance, book/ tablet/ something to keep you occupied if you’re there for a while, nurses gifts (if applicable)
Maternity dress from Target
Crocs courtesy of MIL (mother-in-law)

I’ll probably do a video at some point but this was my quick list. I hope someone finds this condensed list helpful!

Pregnancy Classes pt 2

Here’s my quick opinion of each class based only on my birthing experience with my first child. It’ll say yes or no along with a brief reason.

Early Pregnancy – Yes* but you can find everything online

Late Pregnancy – YES because the hospital tour really made hubby and I feel more at ease and prepared since we knew what to expect

Infant Safety and CPR (non-certified) – YES but thank goodness we haven’t had to use it

Prepared Childbirth – Yes but I could definitely skip this for any additional children unless it was 4+ years since having my first. I did use a technique from the class which was breathing in/ out slowly and deeply while closing my eyes and focusing on getting through each wave (contraction)

Breastfeeding – Yes* and no. I’m only torn because the class itself was good and told you how to contact a lactation consultant (LC) but I still NEEDED an LC and you could find all of the info online

Newborn Care – Yes (see memes below) unless you’re not a first time parent, are around a lot of babies or if you take care of babies for a living

*if the class is offered for free

LnD – Labor and Delivery


Labor begins but NOT how I expected. I’ll give the funny story then the highlights because thankfully my LnD was almost textbook 🙂


Funny Story:

I’d been sick for about the last 2wks and my cough was lingering so one of my Pin(terest) pals said wouldn’t it be funny if coughing made your water break?! After going to the bathroom for the millionth time because I was pregnant and coughing super hard, I grabbed tea from my Keurig and sat down to watch Netflix since I knew I wasn’t going to sleep anytime soon. Did I mention you basically can’t take anything when you’re pregnant especially if you’re paranoid? Anyways I had just sat down and was allowing my tea to cool when I broke out in a terrible coughing fit. I thought great on top of not sleeping I’ve now wet myself… The only bright side is I knew it’d happen since every pregnant woman I knew told me so thankfully I was wearing a liner. As the second wave of coughing started I knew I should go to the bathroom because this water kept coming. I went to the bathroom and sure enough the liner was soaked. I examined it for everything I was told to look for. I made note of the time, color, smell and amount. After I had all of this firmly in my mind I realized crap you could go into labor any time. I called to hubby from the bathroom letting him know my water broke. He slowly came into the bathroom partially not believing me (I’m sure); he’d just fallen asleep which was one of the funny things we listed would happen. He says why do you think it broke to which I respond “wring this out” referring to my liner. He wrings it out and immediately shakes the drowsiness. He says aren’t we supposed to wait? Are you having any contractions? I responded nope not one but I was told to immediately call/ come in if my water breaks due to increased risk of infection. He asks again if I’m sure so I tell him to call. I let him know he can use my phone since the number is programmed. He calls, they verify what I said then ask about time it broke (3:03am), color (clear), smell (none/ kind of sweet) and amount (filled liner/ still coming). Once they get all of the info they say come on in. The last funny part was my almost obsessive desire to take my dog to my mom’s home so he wouldn’t have to be alone. Needless to say hubby used logic to win that disagreement.


Labor and Delivery Highlights:

  • Arrive at hospital
    • Finally get to use the cool spot right in front of hospital
  • Check-in completely calm (still no contractions)
    • Nurses even asked why I was there which isn’t how I pictured check-in going
  • Get to the triage room (correct name?)
    • wait there for about an hour while they test to make sure it was amniotic fluid and for general baby monitoring
  • Moving on up
    • 3.5cm and transferred to the delivery floor!!
    • Experienced first really strong conversation stopping contraction
      • After contraction, I mentioned being irritated when people used to simply say “You’ll know” when asked about how to tell real contraction from BH then I agreed that You’ll Know is the best way to say it
  • Meet and Greet
    • Met the nurses on staff, stated birth preferences (forgot birth plan in the car…) and went over what was going to happen
  • Hooked Up
    • IV line in hand, baby monitoring device, fluids prepared, other possible drugs that can be administered were explained to me per my request
  • Waiting and being monitored
    • This is when hubby went to the car to get the nurse gifts which allegedly went quickly because the nurses at my hospital weren’t used to getting nurse gifts
      • I only say allegedly because at that time I’d been there for a while and I wasn’t sure if they actually liked them or if they felt bad for me because I was still there (shrugs shoulders)
    • 5 or 6cm
  • Thrill is gone
    • my contractions begin to slow down and almost disappeared
    • fluids were given because I wasn’t getting enough water
    • I was 9cm at this point…
    • TEARS
      • hubby was a rockstar. he calmed me down and kept encouraging me through the entire process
  • The Pit Talk
    • Gave contractions a chance to start back up but nothing and I was exhausted
      • about 19-20hrs at hospital and already more than 24hrs since I last slept (I didn’t go to sleep Saturday night because bad cough caused water break Sunday at 3:03am)
    • Pitocin given at level 1 (correct term?) to help contractions start back up
  • Over It
    • Before this I was progressing nicely, each check showed progress
    • This was turning into the never-ending story
    • I was angry and everything annoyed me to the point of homicide
    • I snapped at hubby but he stayed awesome and never snapped back at me
      • after the 1st few contractions I realized I didn’t want to be touched and needed silence during contractions. hubby tried touching me after a nurse suggested it so I bite his head off because he already knew better
  • Almost Caved
    • I might not have mentioned this in previous posts but I wanted to TRY going pain med free. I wasn’t dogmatic nor did I have any real reason besides wanting to experience everything and to see what my true pain tolerance was
    • I was 9.5cm, -2 station and completely effaced but told not to push because it could cause the cervix to swell (since I wasn’t fully dilated) making vaginal delivery harder or impossible
    • Nurse Jamie saved the day
      • the room was silent I was waiting for the midwife because Nurse Jamie thought I might be able to safely push but wanted to make sure
      • I felt an overwhelming need to push but was fighting hard so I didn’t but I lost it. I was practically screaming when Jamie very sternly said “what do you want me to do”. Well that was all I needed to focus and make it through the last part pain med free
  • Transition is awful
    • Jamie informed me that I was experiencing the transitional phase and was right at the finish line and all I had to do was hold out for the midwife.
    • She arrived and I’d never been happier to have a complete stranger check my privates!
  • Magic Words
    • Prepare to push
    • Followed pushing instructions
    • Felt baby’s head
    • Received episiotomy
      • didn’t feel it thanks to all the pain and pressure from his head
    • After 7min of pushing baby was on my chest
      • it felt like I pushed way longer than that but Jamie n hubby insisted only 7min (gives both of them side eye)
  • After delivery
    • Delivered the placenta and looked at it!
      • big deal because the placenta has freaked me out since I started researching pregnancy. made me horribly nauseous at the sight of it
    • Received local shots before being stitched up but after multiple shots I gave up and told her to finish. it was uncomfortable/ weird being able to feel the needle and each stitch

When all was said and done:

  • Didn’t care about receiving pitocin
  • Midwife vs Doctor didn’t matter because only came in once before to introduce herself and at the very end during delivery plus the nurses were the ones that took care of me
  • Support was CRITICAL
    • my hubby as well as all of the nurses were very supportive of my pain med free delivery
    • no one was in the room that didn’t need to be there
      • I considered my mom necessary once labor started because mom can snap you out of it (encourage you) even when hubby can’t because she’s experienced it
    • one of my original nurses even came by to see me the next day and it was her day off 🙂
  • Losing control can happen but it doesn’t have to come in the form of the horrific drama fest they make it out to be on TV
    • when I said I almost lost it I mean wanting to get pain medication and speaking louder than what I planned
  • Find what you feel is comfortable
    • laying in bed, squatting, bouncing on a ball, standing, dancing, swaying, etc whatever safely gets you through it
  • Be informed and ask questions
    • only one nurse rubbed my hubby and I the wrong way but we set her straight by letting her know we’d done our research and were basing our choice on sound info. thankfully that nurse was off duty and we were turned over to someone awesome
    • know your options
      • preferred delivery as well as worse case scenario
    • make sure you can backup your choices with science not just XYZ said/ told me
    • if you don’t understand what’s happening or why, ASK
      • medical profs are there to help you besides most of us don’t have a background in the medical field so somethings we just won’t know
      • also this could help improve the way you feel about your LnD experience
  • Funny thing is your version of delivery and reality of what happened can differ
    • I was sure I was freaking out and yelling but hubby and nurses assured me I was fine and only rose my voice once but it was in general (not directed at someone)

Well if you read all of this thanks! If you only skimmed it thanks! If no one sees this then thanks (to me 😉 ) because this is something my son, myself and hubby can look back on and smile.