In the News: Dr. Barbara Almond, Who Examined Maternal Ambivalence, Dies at 77 @NYTimes

As a labor and delivery nurse, I’ve seen hundreds and hundreds of women give birth. When I had my first child, I was twenty-five, but felt like I was fifteen.  I wasn’t a nurse at that time.  

I was embarrassed that I was pregnant. I don’t know why, but I distinctly remember thinking I didn’t want anyone to know I had sex. But there I was, pregnant and it was very obvious to anyone who took one look at me that I had done “it”. I didn’t know what to expect in labor. I took every prenatal class, I learned all about breastfeeding, and I did everything that I thought I was supposed to do, but I just didn’t know what to expect. When my water broke at home, I washed my hair, I blow dried it, and then I put makeup on and went to the hospital. When I finally had my daughter 36 hours later, I remember the nurses handing her to me. I looked down at her, thinking she looked so much like my husband, and honestly, all I could think about was wanting something to eat and drink. More than anything, I remember telling myself you’re supposed to cry with happiness. But all I could think about was drinking a big pitcher of ice-cold water and trying to wait as long as I could until it was appropriate to ask someone to go get me some food.

Now, as a labor and delivery nurse, I can tell you—I have very very rarely seen women overcome with so much emotion that they weep with joy. The handful of times I have seen it, it has been beautiful. But mostly, women are tired and hungry and want something to drink. They want to examine their baby. If you couldn’t contain all of your emotions and cried with so much love, that’s great. If you didn’t, that’s okay too 😃 I love that Dr. Almond shed light on maternal ambivalence.

Dr. Barbara Almond, Who Examined Maternal Ambivalence, Dies at 77

Until my next delivery ❤

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