Diary of a Labor and Delivery Nurse: Miss Congeniality

Every single day I go to work, I am excited for the job ahead of me. My coworkers are (usually) awesome, each individual personality I’ve come to rely on to help me get through whatever the shift throws my way. My patients are (usually) amazing, they each need something different that I try so hard to supply. I always leave work exhausted, but at the start of every shift I feel overwhelming excited that I made it through nursing school, and that I get to do a job I love with people who (mostly) make everything better. The privilege of being a nurse makes me happy…I always want everyone around me to feel as good as I do about the work we do.

As a nurse, we’re in a constant battle to please every single person around us. Is the patient happy? Is their family okay? I don’t want to deliver at a bad time for the physician. I don’t want to be more work for the charge nurse. Will my patient be delivered before shift change? Is night shift adequately staffed? The poor nursery charge nurse is also the transition nurse. Is she available now if my patient delivers? Should I increase my Pitocin? I hope my patient delivers vaginally. Forget it, I just hope she has a healthy delivery. Are her contractions too strong? When will she ROM? God, I just want to deliver (…and 9/9 Apgars).

No matter how hard we try, we can’t please everyone. If healthy outcomes for our patients drive our actions, then we shouldn’t question what we should have or could have done. We intervene often for so many different reasons…but sometimes we have to remind ourselves to take a step back and just witness the miracle of labor and delivery.

Tomorrow is a new beginning. Even though my legs are aching and it’s not likely I will be able to answer every question or satisfy every need, I will remind myself that every day is an opportunity to make a difference in someone else’s life. We don’t have to please everyone or know how to make everything better for all of those around us. The outcome of our patients should drive the work we do, and the love of our nursing profession will propel us forward ♥

Until my next delivery ❤


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