It was the scariest moment of Lauren Helms’ life. But a nurse helped her through it.
“I’d had a very complicated pregnancy and I knew we were lucky to have made it to 26 weeks,” Helms tells Mamamia. “But the team that was trying to save them was very clear about their odds of survival.”
At Yale-New Haven Hospital in Connecticut, Helms was preparing for an emergency c-section. She cracked a joke to hide her terror.
“But on the inside I was panic-stricken and anxiety started to set in once I was positioned for my spinal,” she wrote in a Facebook post.
“I began to cry, and I remember wanting my mom so she could tell me we would all be okay. I looked at the nurse closest to me.
“‘Please tell me I can do this,’ I choked out behind stifled cries.
“Her eyes softened behind her mask and she took my face in her hands. ‘You can do this.’
“She said it with confidence, and love, and all the support I needed in the worst moment of my life. Then she silently brought my knees up, laid my head on her chest and wrapped her arms around me. She held me while I cried softly through my spinal.
“She stayed with me until my husband was allowed to come back in. I don’t even know what she looks like, but I will never, ever forget that.”
Two-and-a-half years after the birth of her twins, Helms decided to write a post about the moment because she feels that nurses are “undervalued”.
“Here I was at my most vulnerable, cold and naked in a room full of strangers, about to have major surgery and maybe lose my babies, and this nurse took the time to make my emotions a priority,” Helms tells Mamamia. “She could have said, ‘You’re going to be fine,’ and gone back to her work, but instead she gave me what I so desperately needed in that moment – someone to hold me.”