When You Love Unconditionally

Do you ever wonder why people help a total stranger?  Do you ask yourself why is it that some people have babies and some who want them cannot? It is sad when these circumstances of infertility happen and a couple feels that they do not have anywhere to turn.  Rosie Moore founder of The Gift of Life a nonprofit that supports premature babies and nurse consultant for Windermere Baby and Family knows all too well the struggles that parents who cannot conceive face.  Sometimes when the parents are able to conceive, the baby may be born prematurely or the baby is miscarried, these are the heart-wrenching stories that led Rosie to start helping intended parents find a surrogate to carry a baby for them. Miracles do indeed happen, all it takes is unconditional love.

A few weeks ago Becky Kammes, a doula in Wisconsin, shared her moving story about how she gave a couple the gift of a lifetime, the gift of birth!

Read Becky’s touching story as she shares her journey

“I have two children of my own and have been a gestational surrogate twice (working on a third journey currently). Surrogacy is my heart and soul, truly.  My intended parents( IP’s) resided on the West Coast and I live in  SW Wisconsin. My IPs were quite active during my prenatal appointments through FaceTime.  When I turned 20 weeks, they traveled to WI for my 20-week appointment and ultrasound.  When it was time for the baby to be delivered, they flew back for the glorious day, the birth of their baby.   We had a doula present at the birth to support all of us during the birth process. My IP’s were elated with the idea, so my Doula and Hubby were a sensational birth duo for both of my IPs and myself. The experience went so well, that I am currently working on a sibling journey with them. They have since become our extended family and that makes my heart soar!

This was their first baby and they entrusted me with the entire pregnancy and birth; they continuously told me that I was “the birth baby professional” and they wanted me to be most at ease and comfortable. I reminded them that although I had birthed three babies prior, one of which is a surrogate delivery, THIS moment was THEIRS. This special time was THEIRS. I’m just along for the ride! Everything we discussed, every idea mentioned every suggestion made, was crucial to the process because we all had to agree on it.  The five of us were a wonderful team! There was an insatiable cohesive bond that was built without really even trying-it was innate, as silly as that sounds.

Part of the doula’s job is to learn your client’s ‘love language’ as I call it and that was done, to a T! But also, our doula managed to learn my IPs love language in such a short amount of time and didn’t overstep any support boundary in the least bit. There was a strong, energetic bond and everyone, including our nurses and OB, respected that and we ALL conquered the birth as a rockstar unit!

I would love to one day Doula for a surrogate and her IPs. It’s such a profoundly intimate moment-in every aspect of the word and to offer my own experiences and insight to help a fellow surrogate and her family have an exceptional birth experience would be a CHERRY ON MY BIRTH SUNDAE!”

 

Thank you, Becky, for sharing such a special and personal experience with Windermere Baby and Family

Visit Windermere Baby and Family to learn more about becoming a surrogate and what it entails.  We can walk you through the entire process of being someone’s miracle.

 

 

 

 

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The Pain of a Child and Jean Watson’s Theory

What a difficult job it is for nurses that take care of kids that are in pain; these nurses make a difference in each child’s life that they touch.   Jean Watson’s theory of human caring is a good example of our human caring for others.  Jean Watson’s theory of human caring focuses on giving as an extension of self.  It is about instilling faith and hope in a person (Alligood, 2013).   When a person is sensitive to another person’s feelings, it helps to build a trusting relationship.  It is important to acknowledge the positive and negative feelings that a person puts out to another person.

Jean Watson believes in her theory that we experience personal growth through teaching and learning as well as spiritual and socio-cultural well-being.  Jean Watson’s theory emphasizes spiritual and nursing practice, which in turn will promote caring and love to the patient.  This will then develop into a caring relationship.    The theory allows the nurse to understand the other person’s perspectives on things and form a mutual bond.  It also promotes growth when a caring environment is formed allowing the patient to be who they are and be accepted for it.  In the case of caring for a child, it creates a  natural caring environment that will help the child and the parent cope during a difficult time.

References

Alligood, M. (2013). Nursing Theorists and their Work (8th ed.). Retrieved from http://online.vitalsource.com/books/9780323091947

Dr. Rosie Moore https://rosiemoore27.com/

Dealing with Pain and Activities of Daily Living

When someone is in pain, the painful stimulation must be removed in order for them to function. In looking at the activities of daily living such as hair brushing, dressing, and many others, makes anyone in pain lack motivation to function.     When physical therapy is ordered for patients, especially in the home setting, they at times lose their motivation because of the same thing, it is too painful.  But if we as nurses write the plan of care and recommend to the physician to have medications given to the patient about 20-30 minutes before therapy, then the patient may be able to work through the therapy that may be otherwise painful.

With dependent care, it is always a difficult thing if the patient is coherent enough to know that they need help.  As home care nurse, I saw this frustration in many of my patients because their mind was intact, but with an injury or disease process that prevented them from taking care of themselves.  This is when our compassion as a nurse can show the patient that there are ways that they can still remain independent by giving them choices whenever possible.  For instance what foods they like to eat within their diet, what time of day they want their bath. Everything depends on when they have the help available, but at least whenever they can make a decision, give them that option so that way they can feel that they have some decision making power (Alligood, 2013).

References

Alligood, M. (2013). Nursing Theorists and their Work (8th ed.). Retrieved from http://online.vitalsource.com/books/9780323091947

Dr. Rosie Moore https://rosiemoore27.com/

Theoretical Models and Research

There are several theorists that can fit the neonatal population, but the one that I am selecting today is Florence Nightingale.  Although she is one of the oldest theorists, her model can still be applied to everyday nursing.  All patients are prone to getting an infection; however, the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) is particularly at risk.  Florence Nightingale gave us some principles that would help many of our patients.  She believed in keeping the environment clean, therefore observing good infection control.  She also believed in keeping the patient in the best condition and letting nature take its course or “God.” So Florence did have a spiritual connection which made her sensitive to cultural awareness of others (DeNisco & Barker, 2013).

I believe Florence Nightingale’s research model is quantitative.  She believed that if an environment was kept clean, that the patient would not develop infections.  She believed that nurses needed to wash their hands frequently.  Back in that era, this was not a highly common practice.  Bringing it to this generation, looking at the NICU, it makes sense.  The NICU believes in keeping a sterile environment allowing only certain visitors to see the babies and frequent hand washing and scrubbing for the staff and the parents.  When parents are sick, they are asked not to come to the NICU, if a baby is sick, the parents are asked to wear a mask, gown, and even wear gloves, depending on the baby’s condition. This is an example of keeping the environment free of infections so as not to spread it to the babies (Alligood, 2010).

References

Alligood, M. (2010). Madeleine M. Leininger: Modern Nursing. In Alligood Introduction to the Nursing Theory (7th ed. (p64). Retrieved from Vital Source Bookshelf

DeNisco, S. M., & Barker, A. M. (Eds.). (2013). The slow march to professional practice. Advanced Practice Nursing (2nd ed., pp. 6-17). [Vital Source Bookshelf].

Dr. Rosie Moore https://rosiemoore27.com/

 

Nursing Diversity

Nurses need to be culturally sensitive to patients, just because it is something that we do not do in our day to day lives, does not mean that someone else does not do it for religious or cultural beliefs (Alligood, 2010).  We cannot assume that because someone looks homeless that they are. If a patient is arriving by ambulance, he should be seen by someone.  It is understood that the other patients also need help, but the nurse needs to prioritize.   As a nurse, we have to observe the body language and see what the patient is feeling.

I had a friend who was an anesthesiologist and stopped at an expensive diamond store to get his wife an anniversary gift.  He was dressed down in jeans and a t-shirt and a hat nothing special said he was a doctor by his dress code.  He inquired in the most expensive jewelry and the salesperson said to him, oh let me show you this section here this may be more affordable and we can offer you payment plans.  She naturally assumed because he looked like an ordinary Joe in jeans, that he did not have the money to pay outright for his gift.  He asked for a manager and she complied, to which he stated, I am Dr. so and so head of anesthesiology at ABC hospital.  He proceeded to explain that he came in to look for a gift for his wife and was not allowed to select from the section he was looking at because his salesperson assumed that he did not have the income to afford those items.  He provided his card and stated that he would take his business elsewhere where he is not judged on his appearance. We as nurses have to be careful that we do not do the same to our patients and treat them equally the same.

References

Alligood, M. (2010). Madeleine M. Leininger: Culture Care Theory of Diversity and Universality. In Alligood Introduction to the Nursing Theory 7th ed. (pp. 417-434). Retrieved from Vital Source Bookshelf

 

Strategies on Cultural Competence

In my own nursing career as a supervisor for field case managers, I have encountered patients and staff that come from diverse cultures. Every two weeks, our entire region would participate in Grand Rounds and during those rounds, our medical director reviewed four cases that had been submitted prior to the meeting in order to evaluate them for a better plan of care to help the patient.  My team consisted of a mixture of different cultures.  I had some wonderful nurses from different Caribbean Islands, some of them had a very strong accent, but that did not stop them from providing good care.

During our grand rounds, the medical director selected two of my case managers to present their case.  The case was presented in our own team meeting and as a team, we thought it would be a great case to present.  The one case manager we will call her Ms. R. presented a case about a member that had too many cats in the home and she was having difficulty staffing the case with home health aides because no one wanted to go in the home with so many cats. The medical director gave his evaluation of the case and the case was closed with the new information for the nurse case manager to implement.

During a manager meeting with about six other managers, the topic of case presentations came up and how each team needed to submit two cases per week, even if they were not selected for grand rounds.  A manager from England, who spoke with an English accent, stated that my team presented a lot of cases all the time.  I confirmed and stated that our strategy was that in our team meeting as an exercise we would bring two every week so that everyone had a chance to comment and it helped the presenting nurse in case her member was selected for grand rounds.  The English nurse manager asked me how I even understood Ms. R. and a few other staff from the islands that I had.  I politely let her know that I did have a diverse team and every one of them was a great nurse or social worker and did their jobs quite well.  As for understanding them, I listen to what they were saying intently and I did not multitask when they were speaking so that I could capture every word they said. Her response was “I am glad that they are on your team (Clark et al., 2011).”

A week later, I resigned from that position and unfortunately for my staff four of the team went to this one manager and the other nine went to someone else.  But of the four there was one from Haiti, one from Grenada, one from Puerto Rico and the other one was African American.  I  heard from all four about the poor treatment they were receiving from this manager. I, of course, could only listen, since I was no longer working there, but this is a perfect example of how not all nurses follow the code of respect of others cultures.

With patients, it is the same thing,  as nurses, we are not always going to understand what someone is saying whether it be a language barrier, dysphagia from a stroke, or dementia, but as nurses, we need to be able to read the body language.  We need to fine-tune our ears to try and understand what the person is saying. Living in Florida I am exposed to many cultures.  I myself am of Hispanic descent and although born in the states, I understand the diverse cultures that there are here.

In integrating health teachings, many materials are available in Spanish and Creole, However for the ones that are not, the use of translation companies are available through hospitals or managed care companies to help with the teaching that we are offering the patients.

References

Clark, L., Calvillo, E., De La Cruz, F., Fongwa, M., Kools, S., Lowe, J., & Mastel-Smith, B. (2011, May-June). Cultural Competencies for Graduate Nursing Education. Journal of Professional Nursing, 27(3), 133-139.

What is a Father’s Role When the Doula is There?

The doula never takes the father’s role in the birthing process.  The doula enhances and compliments the father’s role during the entire birth.  In this generation, more fathers are becoming involved in the process of birth.  However many fathers still want to be there for their partner, but maybe not in the coaching aspect for fear that they may do something wrong.  Have no fear dads, you cannot do anything wrong.  When the doula is there, she will guide you through the process of being your partner’s support system.  With the doula there it gives the father flexibility to rest, has a bathroom break, eat, and most importantly learn the techniques that will be needed during the difficult time of labor.

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