By Taylor Alef, RN
To be a mother-baby nurse is to feel like a witness to the art of womanhood.
We are with you in the first few days of your baby’s life, supporting you and your family through the most intense physical and emotional experiences of your lives.
We see the pain that comes from childbirth and how your immense love surpasses the limits of what the human body can overcome. We celebrate the joy and pride in your creation. We stand with you against the fears and insecurities that come hand-in-hand with a love so deep.
And when your heart inevitably breaks open with all of these feelings, we are there to remind you that you are enough, that you are capable – that your instincts aren’t wrong.
We are there to bring gentleness and compassion to meet you where you are, whether you are delivering your first child, your fifth or your deeply fought for rainbow baby. It is truly an honor to be entrusted to care for you and your beautiful babies.
We remember how vulnerable it can feel to be cared for, especially when we are used to being the caretakers of others. And so we actively hold space for your privacy and dignity. It is a balancing act, like all of womanhood.
We are there through the dark hours of the night quietly flitting in and out of your room, watching over like a guardian angel. We promise to keep an eye out, that all is safe and sound and well with your baby, so that you may finally fall into a much-needed sleep.
And we are also there for the joyful firsts – a child meeting their baby sibling for the first time, a new dad taking pride in his swaddle skills, your first successful latch after a difficult start at breastfeeding. And, as simple as it sounds, the healing first shower after delivery – when you start to feel human again.
We meet as strangers during this incredible moment in your life. Though, through the glimpses we get into your lives, your family and your relationships, we come to a solid trust and understanding of one another.
Ours is a sacred role: women supporting women.
Your lives give ours purpose.
Thank you for letting us be a part of your story.
You are an essential part of ours.
Taylor Alef is a registered nurse in the Mother-Baby Unit at Mission Hospital.