I Cannot Shake It: Part 2 ~ What I Did Not Know
Funny that the very nature of writing a Part 2 on this topic, reveals that my heart is not able to Shake so much that weighs it down, that I had to share more.
The weight is not something of oppression, yet something that can't be denied. Like a tugging toddler, pulling at a mothers’ hemline, I can't deny its existence, the injustice.
I have seen more than some, but not more than others. What I have seen has thrown off my innocence forever. My mind used to repeat the gruesome reality of what I faced, but years have helped calm that rotation, the spin that ruled my mornings, down.
I am starting on a journey of sharing my story to change Hospital staffing, but first, a quick look at why things must change. I have never shared in writing, what I am about to share -
In 2013, I experienced the greatest tragedy of my life. I compare it to an ambulance at the wrong accident, equipped to help, but just at the wrong place. That's what happened to me.
I was admitted into the hospital, full term and totally joyful. How could I not be? My greatest dream was about to unveil itself, herself for that matter, my sweet, little Finley Elizabeth. I started laboring at 5pm and 28 hours later my two OBGYNS LEFT the property. They left me, knowing there was no back-up, no other physician on property, no one there to help except the sweet nurses who took such great care of me. The plan was just to keep going. I didn't like that plan. Shortly after my physicians left, Finley’s heart rate dropped and she needed help. Those angels, the nurses, rushed me in for an emergency c-section.... yet.... I waited....
and I waited...
and I waited....
and I waited...
Seconds, turned into minutes and PANIC ensued.
People were screaming, nurses was begging for help from somewhere, but no one came.
No doctor was on property. There was no one there to help me...help her. She suffered. I suffered. No one came to help me as I waited
. Over 30 minutes I laid there, prepped and ready for a doctor to get into the Operating Room, to help Finley and myself.
"How can that be?" you may be asking yourself?
That's exactly what I wasn't able to Shake after Finley ultimately died. I learned that MANY hospitals around our country only have OBGYN doctors on call, but none on property, none employed full time. I was disgusted.
I began to fight.
I began to question.
The hospital did not like me.
I would not take "We can't change things" for an answer.
I couldn't shake that what happened to Finley has happened before and would continue to do so if I didn't stop it.
The hospitals' answers were plain and simple. This particular group of hospitals did not have OBGYNs as a part of their Hospital staff. They had no Full Time OBGYNs hired, insured, etc...Only doctors with privileges delivered and cared for patients.
Over the years, I began to chip away. I began to highlight that the help wasn't there. The help was too far away to save Finley's life. Just like the ambulance, the lifesavers were close, but not close enough.
Eventually the hospital said that would change. They said they would deploy the OB Hospitalist Program at their area hospitals and they did. After two years of fighting against this injustice, 26 OBGYNs and midwives were hired. I finally won, but that accomplishment was short lived. I began thinking, how many other hospitals are delivering thousands of babies without full time coverage?
I have been digging, learning and pushing towards the notion that I Cannot Shake that hospitals do not employ full time, OBGYNs. I am stepping into new territory and will be pursuing helping other hospitals set up OB Hospitalist programs. The Finley Project, non-profit, will still be up and running, but I must go after helping others so that they don't go through what I went through.
I will be writing a short book on What I Didn't Know that lead to Finley's death in hopes to help others mothers and hospitals see the need for correct coverage. I will also be launching a new Consulting Business to work with OBGYN Hospitalist Consulting groups to help Hospitals develop their programs.
Finley's death was avoidable, something I Couldn't Shake, but I will press on to continue Staffing changes so no other baby dies a senseless death.
"Never stop being the squeaky wheel." ~ quote form one of Finley's nurses