Labor and Delivery in the Midst of a Pandemic

Nine months: it shoots by like a bottle rocket for everyone around you and seems to drag on especially slowly when it’s happening to you. Especially during a pandemic when you experience a daily and weekly routine so out of whack you can’t remember the day of the week or half the items on your To-Do list. This pregnancy, my third, has certainly been something I won’t forget.

Reflecting on the Time

Of course, I have some great appreciation for the forced slow-down of our family life, more quality time with the older kids, projects at home, and time at the end to rest when I really need it.

As we prepare for the final week or two of pregnancy and the birth of our son, there are so many thoughts running through my head about how shockingly different this delivery will be because of the current hospital guidelines and safety precautions, which seem to change weekly.

I also have a new OB/GYN this round because of our move and insurance changes. I usually select my doctors based on how personable they are and how open they are to my questions and ideas. I am very fond of my new doctor and believe it will be a great experience delivering with her as well, but I will admit there is a sting of disappointment missing my previous doctor and the familiarity I had with her and her staff.

Currently, I have a running list of “things to remember” to prepare for our upcoming hospitalization and birth plan.

Creating a Plan

  1. Plans A, B, and C for our older kids. We have a lot of family help, thankfully. Since my husband cannot come-and-go, we are making sure that our three older children have childcare plans determined for any day or time in case I go into labor.
  2. Our dog, the other child, also needs a plan and a back-up plan since Dad won’t be able to run home to let the dog out during our stay.
  3. Pack two bags. The “lockdown” — as I have been calling it– means your spouse stays in the room with you during your entire stay and cannot leave at all. So he needs a few changes of clothes, shower supplies, and earbuds as well.
  4. Snacks. Yes, lots of snacks. I’m not a huge fan of hospital food and have been pretty spoiled with my two other children. Visitors = snacks, and we’ll be missing out this time with availability and access.
  5. Birth Photography is clearly not happening this time. I will miss the amazing and incredible moments my dear friend and talented photographer has caught for me during my last deliveries. I cherish those photographs with their raw emotion and wrinkly baby faces. This part I may miss the most. I may bring my own “Good Camera” to the hospital and beg a few nurses to help capture some memories of our special day.
  6. Visitors. I enjoyed having immediate family and our closest friends visit at the hospital. It was a beautiful time during the birth of my daughters and also made me feel really connected. I loved having my dearest people around me and loving on my fresh bundle of joy. But I appreciate the health precautions and we will happily oblige and arrange very small visits (with healthy people) at our home later.
  7. The Extras: a laptop to watch a few of our shows in between feedings and changings, cash for vending machine drinks, any shower/ clothing supplies we may want for two or three days, a cute baby outfit or two, Boppy pillow, a special monogrammed blanket.

There is no perfect way to ever plan for the birth of your child. You do your best and roll with it. We are praying for a safe delivery and a healthy child, and the rest will fall into place.

Rachel Harris Ledet
A New Orleans native and entrepreneurial mom, Rachel maintains a daily balance of running her own marketing firm, 30|90 Marketing, managing her kids’ schedules, and maintaining an active extracurricular life including teaching dance, volunteering, and instructing a digital marketing class at UNO. Rachel lives in Mandeville with her best friend and husband Lenny, daughters Addison and Amelia, and step-son Luke. With a growing family (baby number 4 is on the way this summer) and a million balls in the air, Rachel keeps things light by continuously learning, spending time with amazing friends, blogging, finding any route to a concert or outdoor festival, and planning her next get-away with her husband. A sense of humor can get you through almost anything, so she tends to surround herself with fabulous and very-funny people. You can learn more about her here.

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