For the first time in 6 years, we get to celebrate two wonderful types of people on one day - Sunday the 12th May marks International Nurse’s Day and Mother’s Day.
International Nurses Day is a day to recognise the contribution of people around the world who protect, support, and care for us 24 hours a day, every day. How fitting that it should be on a Sunday, a day when most others are resting, but nurses are busy making their rounds, helping their patients, as we do every other day. Similar to motherhood, the role is never-ending, exhausting, rewarding. And also like motherhood, recognition seems to be relegated to a single day; though our regard and appreciation should be shown daily.
Today, your abortion nurse wants to wish you a Happy Mother’s Day.
Because the majority of our patients are also mothers. Mothers who have made difficult decisions about their bodies, their pregnancies, and their lives. Decisions that have brought them to our amazing team of nurses, many of whom are also mothers themselves. We know and understand how motherhood and abortion are intrinsically linked. Abortion is a woman’s choice to become a mother, or not. Or, in many cases, abortion is a choice about whether to become a mother again or not.
Our patients know that motherhood means making difficult decisions for the safety and wellbeing of their families. They know what personal sacrifice feels like. They know about sleepless nights spent worrying about the future, they know about pain, about joy, about beauty and love and dedication, and they know what it’s like to be asked things they never expected. And sometimes that includes making a decision about a pregnancy.
Some women are deciding whether they can be the mother they want to be right now, whether they can give a child the life they would want them to have. Other women are considering the children they already have, and if they can cope physically, emotionally, and financially with another. No matter what, the choice is made with love. And it’s made with the full support of our nurses, who understand that this is never an easy position, but who continuously work to ensure our patients feel free from judgement and full of strength in their decision.
That’s what nurses do; we hold each other up, we work together for something bigger than ourselves, we know what that sacrifice feels like, we know about those sleepless nights, about pain, and joy, and beauty and love, and above all, dedication. And we are always here for those women, who never expected to walk through our doors, but who can walk out feeling sure that they are safe, cared for, and entrusted to make decisions that are right for them.
So today is a day full of gratitude for the powerful women in our lives: the nurses, the mothers, the supporters, the fighters, the carers, the courageous, the sleepless, the unwavering, unstoppable women we are proud to call our own.
Happy Mother’s Day. Happy International Nurse’s Day.
Kitty Grozdich is the Nurse Unit Manager of Marie Stopes Westmead.