Grace Church in New York
Rachel Salvato Gordon
Pregnant While Working the Frontlines During COVID-19
I found out I was pregnant on January 26, 2020.
On January 27th, I had my first encounter with a patient who we suspected had COVID-19.
I always knew being an Emergency Room nurse had its risks, but never did I imagine I would experience working a pandemic while pregnant with my first baby.
As COVID-19 ravaged our patients and staff we simply did the best we could.
In a matter of days, we made adjustments to wear N95 respirators, face shields and protective gowns for 12+ hours a day.
We quickly learned how to care for patients on ventilators; our Emergency Room went from having 0 patients on ventilators to over 30 patients on ventilators.
We cried on each other’s shoulders and rushed to each other’s sides when we were at our breaking points.
Being pregnant, I was terrified.
I cried both ways to work.
My management and co-nurses knew that COVID-19 posed a serious risk to my baby.
They kept me sheltered, protected me to the best of their ability, I even moved floors to a “non COVID” PACU/ICU.
But nothing at the hospital was “non COVID” in March and April.
As we finally start to gain control over the virus, there is a new sense of normal at the hospital.
I look at my co-nurses in a different way now.
We all have a deeper respect and understanding for one another.
On September 22, 2020, my baby girl was born; healthy.
I will never forget working the frontlines during the height of the pandemic.
I can never forget the sacrifices and prayers that I felt by people who I now consider family, and for that, I wouldn’t change a thing.
Rachel Salvato Gordon, RN