Giving birth during this pandemic has undoubtedly been challenging for so many families. Many hospitals in the Las Vegas valley have had restrictions on permitted support persons since the beginning of the pandemic. These restrictions have changed based on case numbers. They have left many unknowns for families wanting to have their birth documented, doula support or additional family members present during one of life’s most intimate and vulnerable times. This has made pandemic birth stories additionally challenging.
When Michayla first reached out to me early in her pregnancy about documenting her birth, there were pretty stringent restrictions in place. We talked via phone, and I had told her, “surely things will look better, and restrictions will lift before your birth.” This conversation took place in the summer of 2020. As things have gone for the past two years, boy was I wrong. By April of 2021, we were still in the midst of rising cases and restrictions on hospital visitors.
Summerlin Hospital, where Michayla delivered, was still under their one support person policy at the time. It was difficult for them to have documented their first birth and not have both her husband and mom present like her first birth. After much discussion and thought, this family decided to have me present for their birth and dad home with big sister to avoid relying on other people during such a challenging time.
So, in the weeks leading up to their birth, we had a plan; I would attend her birth to document, and dad and big sister would join via FaceTime.
In the early morning hours of April 3, 2021, I got the call that Michayla was having regular contractions and was heading to the hospital. When I arrived, she was still in triage where luckily, I was able to join her. She was admitted after a couple of hours of observation and moved to a labor room on the unit. Although she had not made much progress in triage, things were picking up when she was moved to her labor room, and she was becoming more and more uncomfortable. She was able to get her epidural within an hour of arriving at her labor room and became much more comfortable with an opportunity to update her husband and daughter. The plan was to rest before her next exam. Still, things continued to move quickly, and within a short amount of time, she felt discomfort again. She was checked by her beautiful nurse Victoria. To everyone’s surprise, her sweet baby was ready to come! Her OB, Dr. Reynolds, was called and arrived quickly. We got dad on FaceTime and positioned him to see his sweet baby girl born.
Be sure to scroll all the way down to see their beautiful pandemic birth film!
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