Grandparents-Got invited to attend the actual birth…Some tips to know

This post was written by Valerie on October 3, 2011
Posted Under: Grandma Quotes

My grandson hot from the "oven"

WOW–you just got the call or your pregnant daughter/son just invited you to attend the birthing of their child. If this is the first time or many times each situation is unique, magical and scary. Yes scary. Scary on many levels so here goes my sharing time.

My daughter-in-law also invited her mother and myself to go to the hospital with them when it was time to give birth. Note:  take separate cars not ride with the birthing couple.

I was so excited and being a worrier that I am I will admit to the scared part.  I will call my friend M. who was my coach in the hospital. She has more grandchildren than I do so I was leaning a bit on her but found this was her first in the room experience too. Maybe I am wrong she may have been at another birth but besides each birth is different. read more…

We brought pillows, blankets, snacks and water and drove together to the hospital once we got the call from my son that we should come..NOW,

A woman in labor tends to be very, very hot and needs the air conditioning as high as possible. So if you are given the opportunity to attend the birth of your grandchild do the following: bring down sleeping bags that would keep you warm if you were in the North Pole. Literally our lips were blue. M and I could not get warm but our fear, joy and excitement kept us going. You never turn down a gift like this now did I want to miss it had we ran back to the house for more blankets. read on…

The fears and then the truth:

  1. Aside from dressing in layers and warmth be prepared to not sleep
  2. Do not start sharing your birthing experiences or anyone else’s when a mother is in labor (or even after that unless she asks)
  3. Get ice chips if she is out and continually get the nurse for any need our new mom has while in labor.
  4. I don’t care if the nurse just came in and checked her and says it will be nine more hours–listen to the Mom and husband to report changes to the labor or any discomfort. Our job is to do the leg work and let them focus on each other.
  5. Bring candy or cookies to the Nurses station and they love that and seem happier to help you on your 15th visit to them in 20 minutes.
  6. Mean nurse-and they exist in abundance since the economy and long hours get her/his name. Politely ask when her/his shift end.
  7. During the checks by the doctor or nurse stay in the corner or to the side. No one is allowed in that area and be sure to talk to your expecting child ahead of time so she feels comfortable for what to expect.
  8. Answer questions from your Mother to be when she asks. If she needs her feet rubbed or any conversation let her tell you before you move a muscle or open your mouth! Hormones and first births especially can be touchy but not  in our case.
  9. Do not take cell calls or be on the cell phone (change the ring tone to vibrate but if that is too loud just shut it off)
  10. It’s time.  The Doctor comes in, the nurse and with them the pediatrician. So the room will get quite crowded and do your best to stay out of their way.
  11. Your new grandchild is whisked from the mom to get cleaned up/weighed/blood test/and so wait til you are told by the hospital staff you can now see your new Grandchild. This is when you can take the best pictures.
  12. Try not to use your daughters bathroom in her room. There is always one near by and it is safer for her and keeps her privacy. That holds true for visitors after the birth. If it is  OK with her then no problem.
  13. Thank the doctor and staff and you can ask them questions if you have any concerns but best to do that outside the room. You need to feel OK too.
  14. Finally you are handed your newborn after the mom/husband bond. Stay only a little while unless they want or need you to stay. Now go in the hallway and call but let the new parents make the calls first if that is their wishes. (What new parent does not want to notify the world? This miracle is here and beautiful and healthy.)

Whoo…all went well and now love that baby and don’t be a “holding the baby” hog. Share him with those that are not sick and have washed and washed their hands!

Kiss that little miracle for me too!

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