Labor and delivery nurse wish list for her patients..... really LONG
Ill start by saying, I LOVE my job. Labor and delivery is, to me, the most exciting,rewarding career anyone could have. I work in a smaller hospital that does not have seperate postpartum/nursery, so i get to do it all, from critical babies, high risk moms to breastfeeding education. It really is great. There are some things, however, I find myself wishing/hoping/praying that new mom's knew (actually that any of my patients knew)
1) Labor isn't a spectator sport. If its your first baby and your here for an induction, the 25 person entourage really isn't helping anyone. Limit your visitors during labor, you have things to concentrate on, and im not a cruise director (fetching pillows, chairs, drinks, blankets for 5-6 visitors all shift really takes away from my time with my other patients). Now your husband? Ill fetch him and you whatever you need with no problems.
2)Speaking of inductions. Stop it. Please. I know the end of pregnancy sucks.. but we can't induce at all until 39 weeks unless there is a legitamate medical reason. Besides that, do you know how many times we intervene someone INTO a c-section? If your body isn't ready, its going to be a a)long painful induction or b)a c-section for failure to progress. Oh sure, you may be told "your baby is just too big to come down", or "you have a very narrow pelvis" or some other weird excuse.. but often, the induction wasn't needed.
3) We are not the evil "birth experience stealing" people you think we are. We try to give you every thing you want.. but we are bound by rules and regulations also. Also... asking for an induction, then getting mad at me because i insist on monitoring you, is really not the best practice. If your on pitocin, i need to see how its affecting your uterus and your baby. Most of us do know and favor natural labor and birth.
4) read a book. okay, this may be number one. do you know how many women i take care of that dont have ANY clue how labor works, what a cervix is, or anything. Its depressing. Take some responsibility for your own health care. Inform yourself. Seriously, labor wouldn't be HALF as scary if you knew what was going on.
5) If there is trouble, an emergency. Please cooperate. Im trying to help you and your baby. Refusing to wear oxygen or turn over is really stupid of you... this happens WAY more than it should. And should I really have to fight you on this? If your nurse is worried, there is prob a good reason. I dont get anxious much at all.
6) Breastfeed. At least try. Once. The colostrum is so good for your baby, and the skin to skin contact is the best way for him to regulate to life outside the womb. If you dont want to, thats fine, and I wont judge.. but I will ask you at least once to reconsider. This is mostly due to its the best for baby.. but new regulations and reimbursement issues are making me do it as well.
7) Again with the entourages... its great that you want to share your birth. Really! I get it. I dont even mind large crowds. I mind ENTITLED crowds. I mind crowds that impede my walkway down the hall to get to my other patients, and I really mind vulgar crowds or drunk crowds. Just please... keep it chill. I really dont like being a bouncer... but i do have to at times.
8) Dont tell me that you dont want an epidural for your induction, but then cry, scream, and generally freak out about the IV. Its not THAT bad. It hurts less than a child coming out of your vagina, i promise. I will admit that I will judge you a little bit for real tears and snot because of an IV. I know its uncomfortable.. but im really really good at it, and it really will take me less than a minute if you hold still and give me your arm.
9) Dont care if you shave, or have a full bush. makes me no difference. The only things ive EVER noticed is 1) a biohazard tattoo right above her vagina 2) braids with beads 3) long hair that was (seriously) down to her thigh. You know what I DO notice though.. really poor hygiene. Shower daily, that is all.
10) dont complain to me how you can't feed your baby, have no carseat, no baby clothes, no formula, no WIC appointment, no foodstamps, no car, and no way to get your medicine if you are holding an Iphone with a manicure and a great dye job. Worse if you and your S.O each have a laptop and your S.O has hooked his playstation up to our TV to play. Even worse if you are THC positive or whining about not being able to smoke. Your pregnant, be responsible. Plus, how do you expect me to help you in the 24 hours I have with you after delivery??? magic?
11) Speaking of sig others... please just introduce the man in the room. I have offended people by assuming marriage and paternity. Now i just ask, "and who is with you today". I really cant keep track of boyfriends vs baby daddy's vs husbands. (or girlfriends) Its hard. If people would just be upfront, it would keep me from having to guess.
LOL.. these things happen weekly around here.. and the more i read about how horrible hospitals and labor nurses and OB docs are.. the more I feel the need to show MY side. (and im having horrible insomnia)