Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Obstetrics clinicals...Mint Julep: do not read

Umbilical Cord
2 arteries....1 vein...draw the blood...don't freak, sometimes it pulsates.

2 days of clinicals in my (so, I thought) least favorite setting, OB.
I'm not quite sure what to expect when they send me off to the unnamed hospital for our observation of the area. Are we to actually have hands on or are we to just sit back and watch?
Because I'm a hands on learner ...I go for broke.
At the first little group meeting I announce my name, the school I'm from, my status : Student RN , first semester, (this part is they don't expect much yet are pleased when you know something), and that what ever they got that is cool...let me know...even if they have forgotten what is cool....I always note to everyone * remember, I've seen nothing, all is amazing and new to me :).
I smile big and cross my fingers, hoping for the best. The Charge nurse usually sets you up with a RN to follow and if you have a great RN, it's a great day, if you have a cranky RN, uhh not so good. (as I've noted before).
My RNs were awesome~
They liked the fact I was a go getter and asked questions, I was willing to help, and I only expressed true concern and dismay maybe ...let's say once or twice.
Here were my 2 days and what I saw...then I'll give you the short run down.
3 live births, many fundal checks(look it up), ice packs, teaching, 1 cesarean, 1 trip to the mortuary and hand holding.
Live births: amazing every time. I'm a freak and have to start telling myself to not cry when the baby comes out and screams that first gurgly baby scream. I also had to be reminded to not "push" myself (if you know what I mean) every time I was coaching a mom and holding her feet up. A nice young RN came over to me and whispered in my ear, " You aren't crazy, it happens all the time, but I'm just going to tell you....if you PUSH for 10 seconds every time they do, you will prolapse your entire bladder by the end of your kegals instead."
such sage advise. thank you RN Shannon.
Live birth...I feel better about my vagina now* note to self, everyone is different and I can now vouch for that.
C-Sections, wowza. I was sad it wasn't more fun for the mom. She was scared outta her mind and puked about 5 times before anyone but me her mouth.
not enough explaining what was going on, especially for a first time mom, first time in the surgery room. Not really the ideal birth. Especially if you have been reading "What to Expect When You are Expecting".
That damn book tells you nothing about the temperature of the room and that is so flippin impersonal you want to shoot yourself in the foot.
But the end result in this scenario was the same.
Baby....a really cute one named Abigail Marie.

***Mint Julep...or any pregnant person stop reading here***

My first day I did have to come home and drink a bottle of wine. I had a trip to the mortuary on the baby floor just so I would see the unfortunate side of the coin. People don't talk about the 1 chance in I don't know how many that you might not give birth to a live baby, or even worse the precious angel leaves before it lives her first day.

We walked into the little room with few pieces of paperwork to fill out. The big sweaty mortuary guy, dressed in your typical black and white, with a bow-tie sat down and started filling out paperwork. I glance at my nurse...she looks at me and opens a large fridge and gives me a forgiving look. First a bucket. She says , "25 weeks, cremation, parents have signed off, they don't want anything or any contact."
She looks at the guy and says, "Are you taking the girl?" he states they will be leaving her until Thursday.
I look into the fridge and see a large bundled 'package' on a blanket wrapped in more baby blankets.
uh -uh I think...this is not where the dead it?
They sign the paperwork and he leaves. My RN looks at me and says," do you want to see her?"
"I don' t know, do I want to see her?"
"it's up to you...she was born, and died after her first breath. I haven't seen her since she was delivered. It was awful, the entire family was at the birth.
She was perfect."
we gently unwrapped her and pulled the covers back. You could feel the coldness through the blankets. I had no idea what I was going to see. The top blanket was taken from her head and underneath was the most perfect baby I had seen yet. Her ears were perfect, her little head as round as could be, and if I didn't know I would think she was sleeping....except she was ice-cold, her lips and fingernails were black....and her little body was hard. Her skin was smooth and her blond hair curled around her face like a cherub. I stroked her beautiful cheek, and wanted to smell her head like you do with precious babies...but knew that would not be right. As I pulled the blanket back I noticed she was dressed.
" She was dressed for family pictures".
I know they do this.
"Her entire know, pictures. They didn't want to know what autopsy, they couldn't bare to think of her cut up."
i understood that part....
Her little onesie she had on was a perfect shade of baby doll pink to match her blond read:
Bestest Little Sister
I wept. I couldn't control myself....
I just plain wept.


dark and light said...

That last part is really really sad and brought tears to eyes. How horrible.

Lapetitemort said...

I'm sorry.

k said...

Yes, you are correct - even I should not have read that part considering I too will be heading to a delivery room very soon.
Love ya and keep up the good work - maybe OB is where you should be -- Most nurses I know that have been in there - love it.

miss. chief said...

i know that it happens all the time, life and death are natural, but this made me really sad.

Mint Julep said...

You know I read it. Horrible. My mom went through that. I can't imagine. Thanks for the warning though.

Sara Olson said...

You are the bravest person I know, to make that choice to see the baby. I could not have done that, and I think I'm pretty strong. You saw --and I'm sure you already realized this--that there must be rain to appreciate the sunshine. Keep up the good work, Missy. You're one of those heroes that not enough people recognize.--Sara O.