Dear Labor & Delivery Nurses:
Your work is so very important and special. Unfortunately it is often underappreciated. Doctors often get the credit for the safe arrival of a healthy baby while you have spent the majority of the time caring for the laboring mama, making her comfortable and monitoring the baby closely. You quietly smile and go about your work every day without receiving the recognition you deserve. The fact is: we could not do this without you.
You see us moms at our best and at our worst. Your positive attitude calms mamas who feel nervous or afraid. Your knowledge is a huge asset to new moms who don’t feel prepared. Your calm demeanor helps us stay focused and comfortable while we labor. If a problem does arise, you approach it quickly and professionally, keeping mama’s worries to a minimum.
You guide us during pushing. You encourage us, and tell us that it won’t be long before we get to see our baby. You tell us when we are doing a great job, and tell us when we need to try something different. You are the treasured link between patient and doctor, and hold two (or more!) lives in your hands at the same time.
You hear us cry. You hear us scream. You are sometime on the receiving end of those screams. You take it all in stride. You see us when we are exhausted and at the end of our rope, wanting to give up. You see the big picture and you know what is waiting at the end of this process, and you remind us of that.
You are there for the joy. You are there for the smiles and tears. You are there to help clean up and get us put back together with the utmost dignity and respect. You get to see the faces of angels every day. You help make miracles happen.
You also see mothers through heartbreak and loss. You are some of the very few people in the world who personally witness some of the most gut-wrenching and deeply personal experiences that a parent can endure. You are there. You feel with them. You pray for them. You remember them.
Yours is a sacred role. You don’t do it for the money. You don’t do it for recognition. You do it because it is your calling.
Many of us don’t realize until long after we have gone home just how much you have done for us. We sit there in awe of the work that you have done. We want to thank you, but we may not remember your name or how to get in touch with you. But today we make our feelings known to you: we are so grateful for what you do. We hope you never forget how important you are, and how very much you are appreciated. What you do every day matters. Thank you for being a part of some of the most life-changing experiences a person can have. We are glad to have shared it with you.