Just over a week ago I was unpacking, trying to learn my way around the area, and looking forward to my upcoming trip to Michigan. But everything changed on a quick outing to the library followed by a long stay at the hospital. I still get teary thinking of that first night, sitting in the hospital room by myself, overwhelmed by the sudden change of plans and quite scared of what this meant. I knew no one in Alabama. I had never even seen this hospital before. My husband couldn’t be with me and both he and my kids were stressed to leave me at the hospital. We had no idea what this meant for our baby. I had no idea if my insurance would cover ANY of the hospital bills (still not real clear on that one, btw, but supposedly it’ll cover some. That’s for another post.) I was quite alone in that hospital room, and would be for a while.

During my five days (four nights) in the hospital I saw at least four different doctors (whoever was on-call, since my doctor refused to come to Alabama). I have no idea how many different nurses I had. This doesn’t include the doctors and nurses I’ve seen for J. Most of the staff has been great. But there were two exceptions: my first doctor and my first nurse. The first doctor was not very kind and was quite insistent about inducing me the next morning. I wanted to wait until the afternoon in hopes that my mother in law would arrive in town and therefore Matt might be able to be with me as our child was born. She did not like that idea, but finally agreed to wait till midday. She is probably a very talented doctor, but I definitely did not like her! Especially when you combine her bedside manner with my emotions, which were quite high, given the situation. Thankfully she was no longer on duty as of 7:00 the next morning and I never had to see her again. The other doctors were much kinder. (I remember that first doctor didn’t even knock when she came into my room at 6 a.m., just waltzed in and started talking/poking at me. Hard to imagine, but I was actually trying to sleep at that time. Everyone else always knocked.)

The other person who stood out was the nurse I had that first night. However, I forgot her name. (Did I mention I have had lots of different nurses and doctors? And I never had the same one twice, though thankfully J has.) She was a gift from God. She was so kind, so understanding. And she was very empowering. She would try to help me understand the risks/concerns the doctor had and what signs the staff look for. What she did was tactfully and professionally help me have some of the tools I needed to deal with that doctor and the entire situation. I wish I could describe how encouraging she was to me just by her compassion and her empowerment. Even the next morning when the doctor wouldn’t let me have breakfast (and I was starving! I wanted to build strength if I was going to be popping out a kid later that day). However, my nurse brought me a couple saltine crackers. That may not seem like much, but believe me, I was happy to have something. The next doctor on-call let me eat breakfast (and all the rest of the day. And she let me wait till the following day/Thursday to be induced! I liked her much better.) My nurse did somewhat go against that first doctor, for which I hope that doc never finds out, but she was right in line with what the others doctors would have done. She still could have gotten in trouble, especially given the personality of the doctor. My nurse empowered and supported me, even at a risk to herself. What a great woman! She was such a gift to me! I so wished I could remember her name!

This week Tuesday when I started having health issues after visiting J, Matt decided we should stop by the maternity unit (since we were close) to ask about the issues. The same nurse happened to be at the desk. I was very happy to see her, despite the circumstances! She said she had been wondering how things turned out for me. I still didn’t catch her name, but Matt did, and I was grateful! Kristi. Now I will remember her name. When we were talking briefly I tried to tell her how great she was, but I doubt she’ll ever really know. May God put many blessings on her.

3 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Anonymous
    Aug 19, 2010 @ 09:46:19

    Most of the time the nurses are the God sends! I'm so glad that Kristi was there for you that night. I can't even begin to imagine the fear you were experiencing there. Wow! But God know who you needed there to support you. What a wonderful story. You'll have to compile all of these blog entries and write a book. If not for the world to see, at least for Jace to read when he's older. Amazing! :)- Jam


  2. ChattiKathi
    Aug 19, 2010 @ 16:00:29

    Oh yes, nurses are the balm for doctor's abrasiveness! I'm so glad you got to meet Kristi, and were able to express your gratitude a bit. Compassionate strength is what nurses have.I love the new pic of Jace. He has hair!Love, Kathi


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