A Feeding Frenzy

| Bangor, ME, USA | Working | January 12, 2017

(This is about a month after I gave birth to my daughter 14 weeks early. My daughter was taken to another hospital for the NICU. I go up every weekend, sometimes during the week, and during this time I am healing from an infection in my C-section incision. This happens one day when I go up to visit her. I have taken her out of her incubator and am holding her. The nurse starts her feeding tube.)

Me: *holding my daughter for only 45 minutes and talking to my dad* “Her feed is nearly done.”

Dad: “Is that how long it takes, 45 minutes?”

Me: “Used to take only ten!”

Nurse #1: “Dear, her feed is up. You need to put her back.”

Me: “But… But I’ve held her for longer! She needs me!”

Nurse #1: “No, you need to put her back.”

Dad: “Can’t you let her hold her own child for a while!? We live two hours away from here! She can’t be up here constantly like some of the parents are!”

Nurse #1: “I don’t care; I’m the nurse on duty.”

(The nurse then removes my daughter from my arms, and lays her FLAT in her incubator. My dad quickly leaves to go get my mom.)

Me: *buttons up shirt and starts crying*

Nurse #1: “Oh, stop, it’s been a month.” *leaves*

Me: *crying and goes over to my daughters incubator to watch her*

Daughter: *suddenly vomits*

Me: “[Daughter]! Someone help! She’s vomiting!”

Nurse #2: “Move out of the way, dear!” *quickly gets in and starts cleaning up my daughter and making sure she isn’t choking*

(By now I am inconsolable and my mother has arrived. I’m in shock from seeing my tiny baby vomit so much.)

Mom: “Who laid her down flat?!”

Nurse #2: “I’m not sure…”

Nurse #1: “I did.”

Mom: “YOU NEVER LAY A BABY DOWN FLAT AFTER THEY EAT! WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU?! I SHOULD REPORT YOUR A** AND GET YOU FIRED! GET AWAY FROM MY GRANDBABY!”

Nurse #1: *speechless*

(I have to be pulled out so I won’t upset the other babies. After the nurses let me back in to hold my daughter’s hand before I leave, and to give her a kiss. I get home that night and they call.)

Supervisor: “Hi, may I speak with [My Name]?”

Me: “Speaking.”

Supervisor: “Hi, I’m sorry to bother you, but it seems [Nurse #1] has given [Daughter] another mother’s breast milk.”

Me: “WHAT?!”

Supervisor: “I’m terribly sorry, but we are going to need you to get blood work done next time you come up, and we will run tests on both the mother and your daughter. I also heard about what happened earlier. That nurse will NOT work on your daughter again while I am at this hospital.”

(Next time I went back, the head nurse gave me two gift cards and a card from the entire NICU, and expressed how sorry they were about the incidents. Thankfully neither the mother or I had anything and my daughter was all right, but I had never been more angry and sad in my life that someone could pay so little attention to a preemie!)

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