Being a Labor and Delivery Nurse

Hi everyone!

It is a happy Monday indeed as the Spring weather is finally here! I hope you enjoyed the weekend in the sunshine as much as I did!

I wanted to share an update with you on my job. As of today, I am done with orientation and am on my own as a Labor and Delivery Nurse. Ever since starting nursing school I dreamed of being an L&D nurse and I still feel like I have to pinch myself at times. I am living my dreams and it is so amazing! It is crazy how much of an impact a job can have on your life and happiness, I honestly feel like a new person compared to my last position.

To keep you guys up to date with my new job,, I thought I would share some of my thoughts and answers to commonly asked questions with you all…

  • What I do on a daily basis– One great thing about L&D is that no day is the same and there are so many different areas within L&D that I get to rotate between including OR for c-sections, antepartum (care before delivery), and eventually triage (comparable to an ER for expectant women). People have been asking me what I do during a typical delivery and to be honest it’s hard to sum up since I have to complete a lot of smaller tasks before, during, and after a delivery. For the most part, I am responsible for mom and baby’s safety especially when baby is still inside mom and I am also a cheerleader and huge support system for mom and the family (the amount of times L&D nurses yell “you can do it” and “push, push, push!” is immeasurable).
  • Sometimes L&D is not a happy place– While L&D is overall a much happier place than the unit I worked on before, it can at times be the most devastating. People always say, “Oh, you help delivery babies, what a happy job!” While most of the time that is true as patients are there to bring a new life into the world, when a mom and her family lose a baby the mood on the unit quickly changes. I have experienced a couple losses now and it is so, so sad and challenging to help families through this tough time. However, as always I am there to take the best care of the patient and her family that I can. Keeping that thought in the forefront of my mind definitely helps me to be strong for the patient.
  • My favorite part of L&D– This is a tough one since there are so many aspects of it that I love. I would have to say one of my favorite parts is seeing the mom and family’s reaction when the baby is born (comparable to watching a groom’s face as a bride walks down the aisle). I have seen grandmas jump up and down, dads cry, and the loving look on a mom’s face when she sees her new baby for the first time. The emotions in the room are unreal and I openly admit that I teared up during the first few deliveries I saw. Being apart of such a memorable, incredible time in a family’s life is truly incredible!  

    

I have also gotten many other questions from my family and friends such as, “Do a lot of moms get epidurals?” YES. “Does the mom’s stomach go back to normal after delivery?” A few fortunate ones yes, but most no. And my patients favorite question to ask me…”Do you have kids?” I usually answer “no, not yet” with a smile and they respond “And you still want to after seeing THIS?” Yes, nothing grosses me out or scares me at this point.I am so fortunate to help bring little lives into this world and look forward to many more future deliveries! Keep living your dreams, my friends! Have a good week 🙂

– M –

 

Being a Nurse Means…

Happy Monday friends! Now that I’ve been working as a nurse for over nine months (I cannot believe how fast it’s gone by), I wanted to share some of my thoughts, feelings, and realizations I’ve had.   

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To me, being a nurse means…

  • Walking into work each day having no clue what your shift is going to be like.
  • Learning something new every, single day.
  • Standing on your feet for thirteen hours and walking miles to patients’ rooms, to the supply room, and to the nurse’s station (over and over).
  • Getting a thirty minute lunch break to scarf down some food to fuel your body while stopping multiple times to answer phone calls and help patients.
  • Holding a patient’s hand before they go down to a surgery they are extremely nervous about.
  • Celebrating the fact that a patient is going home to their family and pets after being in the hospital for weeks. 
  • Being with a patient on their birthday, an anniversary, or holiday and making the best of the day even though they are sick.
  • Working together with your coworkers and feeling like you see them more than your own family and friends, but you know you wouldn’t be able to get through your shift without them.
  • Being with a patient during their finals breaths and later being with the family as their grieve their loss.
  • Talking to doctors, radiologists, lab techs, pharmacists, family members, nurse assistants, and secretaries to collaborate a patient’s care.
  • Drinking multiple cups of coffee to stay energized at 3:00am when your patients are all finally sleeping.

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  •  Leaving work feeling exhausted, yet knowing you made an impact on multiple lives.
  • Hearing a patient thank you for their care and tell you that you are a great nurse. 
  • Sleeping for a few hours (while people mow their lawns, kids scream, cars honk) before going back into work and doing it all over again.

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It is hard to explain what nursing is all about, but it truly is a difficult, tiring, yet such a rewarding profession. I am excited to see where my career takes me in the future (hopefully to labor and delivery and back to school!). Thank you to all the nurses that have impacted me and who help me get through my shifts! 

Hope you all have an amazing week!