In March 2020, Jenn Jones had her first miscarriage from an in vitro fertilization (IVF) pregnancy.
Since 2020 was such an isolating year for so many people, experiencing a miscarriage during that was really difficult.
“That’s when you need people around you and that’s when we were told to stay away from each other,” Jenn said.
For more than four years, Jenn and her husband struggled to become pregnant. Finally, on their eighth and final attempt at IVF, the implantation was successful.
During her time at Rochester General Hospital, Jenn developed a friendship with her nurse, Amy Reed. Over time, Amy learned more about Jenn’s story.
“I remember when I was trying to get pregnant, I really really wanted to be a mom more than anything,” Amy said. “So it hit home, knowing how hard [Jenn] tried to get pregnant. So I became a little bit protective.”
“To be at 39 weeks, in the hospital, ready to give birth, was a pretty big deal for us,” Jenn said. “Throughout the day, Amy was with me as I tried to get comfortable, as the contractions picked up. Then things started to change.”
Jenn became nauseous and then sick.
“I remember my eyes welling up with tears just thinking about, ‘It’s amazing what a woman will go through to have a baby,’” Amy said.
At this point, the baby’s heart rate started to drop. More staff began to fill up the room to help Jenn. They helped to move her body into different positions to try to relieve some of the stress on the baby.
“I remember [Amy] pointing out that the doctor was there to talk to me,” Jenn said. “That’s when he suggested that we needed to do a C-section. I signed the paperwork, he asked me if I had any questions, and my question was just, ‘Amy, are you coming with us?’ She was almost like a security blanket.”
Jenn’s labor and delivery team wheeled her down the hallway into the operating room with Amy alongside her.
“To be able to look over and see Amy was…calming and reassuring,” Jenn said. “Brian [Jenn’s husband] came in and they delivered Augie, our son. And I remember my husband saying, ‘Yes, I’ll cut the cord.’ But I never heard anything. I remember thinking, ‘At this point, I should hear something. There should be a cry.’”
“When you’re laying down with a drape up and you can’t see much of anything other than a couple of people, it gets really vulnerable. You are in a position where you don’t know what’s happening or what’s going on. I remember being scared.”
During the operation, the umbilical cord had become wrapped around Augie’s neck – twice. From the time he was delivered until the time they got the cord unwrapped, it was 4 ½ minutes. Doctors had begun to intubate him to get oxygen going.
“I remember looking to my left, Amy was right there, and she just reached under the drape and grabbed my hand and just held it,” Jenn said. “And even though I had no idea what was going on, I knew something wasn’t right. So to just have that comfort of ‘It’s going to be okay. She’s got me. She’s right here. She hasn’t left.’ She was my constant. She was right there through it all.”
The doctors could not get the tube past baby Augie’s vocal cords. They pulled the tube out to reposition it for a moment, and that’s when everything changed.
“That’s when he cried,” Jenn said. “I didn’t hear it. I just heard the whole OR erupt in cheers and clapping. Then I remember [Amy] going ‘Shhhhh’ and quieting everybody down so that I could hear him cry. It was an absolutely beautiful moment.”
Once Augie was stabilized and checked out by the delivery team, Jenn was brought into the recovery room with her baby. They were eventually moved into their own room, where Amy came in to check on them once more before her shift ended.
“I remember thinking to myself, ‘Did I say thank you? Did I tell her how much that meant to me?,’” Jenn said. “I sent her a friend request on Facebook and wrote her a long message just thanking her for being there for – I don’t know if it went over her shift or not, but she stayed with us and that meant the world to us.”
Amy was able to follow up with Jenn and meet baby Augie once they arrived home.
“It’s been a beautiful thing to keep up with her,” Amy said. “It’s forged a friendship between us that we otherwise would not have had. But it’s a beautiful thing.”
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