Any woman who has ever had a child knows just how important labor and delivery nurses are. It's typically the nurses who do most of the heavy lifting during routine labor, with the doctor arriving only when it's showtime. Nurses are the ones who talk the mom through the unbearable contractions, guide them in how to best position themselves, and monitor both mom and baby to make sure everyone is healthy and labor is progressing as well as possible, and so much more.
Caty Nixon is a labor and delivery nurse from Texas who loves her job even though it can be as heartbreaking as it can be heartwarming. Nixon's twin sister, Laura McIntyre recently shared a picture of the nurse at her home that shows the true reality of the emotional toll being a labor and delivery nurse can take. Nixon is pictured sitting in a chair, holding a glass of water while a plate of food sits in her lap. Nixon isn't eating however because, as McIntyre shared in her post, it had been a particularly trying day for the nurse.
Nixon had delivered a stillborn baby that day and the picture captures the raw emotion she is feeling as she is finally able to go home and be with her own family. McIntyre wrote alongside that picture that "caty just wrapped up her fourth shift in a row. that's around 53+ hours in four days. that's not including the 1.5 hours she's in the car each day. she usually doesn't get a chance to eat lunch or even drink much water. (& she has to dress like a blueberry.. i mean, come on). she is so good at what she does that she often forgets how to take care of herself while she's taking care of her patients."
She explained that on the night the picture was taken, Caty had "a particularly hard day." She went on to explain that "she delivered a stillborn. have you guys ever really thought about what a labor & delivery nurse sees? they see great joy in smooth deliveries & healthy moms & babies. they see panic & anxiety when a new mom is scared. they see fear when a stat c-section is called. they see peace when the mom has support from her family - bc not all new moms do. they see teenagers giving birth. they see an addicted mom give birth to a baby who is withdrawing. they see cps come. they see funeral homes come. did you know that they have to make arrangements for the funeral home to come pick up the baby? i didn't either."
Laura simply wanted to make people aware of the emotional toll that being a labor and delivery nurse can take. Caty told TODAY that her job can be a roller coaster of emotions. “The good times are so good, and the bad times are heartbreaking,” she said, adding, “I’m here for all of it.” She said that on the day the picture was taken, "I was overwhelmed and exhausted," Nixon said. "I just needed that release."
McIntyre told TODAY that she is overwhelmed by the response from her post that has since been shared more than 100 thousand times.
“Labor and delivery nurses are physically, mentally and emotionally there for their patients every single day,” McIntyre said. “The amount of love coming from this post is outrageous.”