A black and white photograph showing a nurse helping a new mum on the toilet has gone viral for an incredibly powerful reason.
The image, shot by birth photographer Katie Lacer, aka MommaKTShoots, was recently shared online by parenting blogger Jill Krause as a tribute to the wonderful work carried out by labour and delivery nurses every single day.
Taking to her Facebook page to share the image, Krause wrote a heartfelt post giving thanks to the nurses who helped deliver each of her children, ending with a call to give thanks to all those working in the industry across the globe.
“I'll never forget the faces of the nurses who followed me into the bathroom after delivering each baby,” she said.
“That moment when I was so vulnerable, so tired, scared, shaky. My swollen belly deflating, and my modesty long gone. They treated me with such kindness and dignity.”
Krause continued to give thanks to both the nurses who helped her, as well as those working in the profession in general, by writing, “For me, these have been moments of empowerment and confirmation that I have a real village to help me, even if just for that little bit of time in a bathroom, on a toilet, while a kind nurse shows me how to put an ice pad on my mesh undies…
“Let's hear it for the nurses and the doulas and anyone else who shows us how to make ice pad underwear (or helps with that first shower post c-section!)”
Krause couldn’t possibly have known that her post would spark a global outpouring of appreciation for labour and delivery nurses around the world, with her original image racking up over 124,000 likes and garnering over 7,500 comments so far.
Thousands of women across the world have taken to the post in their droves to share their own powerful, heartwarming stories of the nurses who left a lasting impression on them.
One woman described how nurses were the only people in the room with her when she had to start pushing, describing them as her “strength” and writing that “without them having my son would have been a scary and painful process”.
Another revealed the lengths that nurses go on a daily basis to help mothers deliver their babies, writing, “When I was pushing, I’ll never forget pulling my face away from my nurse's chest to see her scrub top SOAKED with my sweat and tears…
“I was like, ‘Oh my god I'm so sorry!’ And she went, ‘Baby, this is life all over my shirt. Nowhere else I'd rather be. Now let's get that baby out.’”
There were also stories of heartbreak and hope, with one woman paying tribute to the doctor, nurses, and doula who helped her deliver her second son shortly after the sudden death of her firstborn son, Cillian, who died at 13 months old.
“I was in no state to be giving birth, much less care for a newborn,” she wrote. “I needed help and my doula was the angel I needed. She was able to keep the birth positive in the wake of such complete sorrow….