Imagine going through a global pandemic (oh wait, this is life now). Now, imagine going through a global pandemic… pregnant. In this episode of the VulnerABILITY Podcast, host Marisa Donnelly chats with Elena Lecrichia, a Labor & Delivery nurse from Stony Brook University Hospital about her (and her coworkers’) pandemic pregnancy experiences. From juggling changes to finding support in one another, Elena opens up about giving birth in the time of COVID-19.

To read more about Elena’s experience, check out this post on pregnancy stories during COVID-19!

Highlights From The Episode:

[1:30] “It’s definitely a crazy experience, unlike what you expected in your head your pregnancy would be like.”

[2:10] “You have to let yourself grieve for the experience that you lost, let yourself feel those feelings… Give yourself an outlet to feel bad about how the experience is different, but then feel those feelings and shift, and realize that it’s still an exciting time.”

[4:05] “We were all able to share our disappointments… and feel these emotions together, which helps because people can know what you’re feeling but they don’t really understand it unless they’re going through it as well.”

[5:15] “You have to focus in on what’s going on right now because no one knows what’s going to happen in the future.”

[5:20] “Taking it day by day is really the way to get through it in the [sanest] way possible. If you think big picture, it’s easy to get wrapped up in it and be stressed and overwhelmed and frustrated and sad.”

[9:15] “It was a time unlike any other, but the good thing about being a Labor & Delivery Nurse is that every person who came in is pregnant or just had a baby. You get to connect with those patients on a whole different level.”

[10:50] “Even though everybody’s going through these different things and we’re asked to be separated and socially-distanced, we can find those little moments of connection and hold onto those. And that’s what helps us get through it.”

[13:50] “It’s still something to be super excited about – being pregnant, having a baby.”

[14:10] “Definitely take time to express your emotions, whether that be talking to somebody or journaling… definitely take a lot of pictures… Don’t forget the little moments to enjoy, too.”

[15:00] “When we’re just trying to survive and get through the next day, we don’t think about those little things. Even if things are so different, you can still celebrate.”

[15:27] “All moms are tough, and brave, and amazing. But [pregnancy during a pandemic] just gives that extra, ‘Wow, not only did I do this, but I did this during the most complicated, weird time in history.’ And that just makes us…stronger and [gives] all these coping skills you maybe wouldn’t have had otherwise.”

[17:30] “As much as things change, they stay the same. We’re being cautious and taking all these precautions, but we’re still capable of celebrating happy moments. And birth is still such a happy moment. It’s going to be celebrated as such; it’s just going to look different on the outside.”

[18:20] “Embrace the fact that things are always going to be moving and shifting. How can we not only see the good in that, but then understand that even though things are changing, there are so many core moments that are staying the same.”

[20:05] “It’s a lot about perspective. You can keep thinking how bad it is, but also remember it does suck, but it’s also a really awesome time and experience… being pregnant and having a baby.”

To listen to more episodes of the VulnerABILITY Podcast, click here.