Pregnancy Support for Minnesota Mom
My name is Kristen Uilk and I live in Jasper, Minnesota. My husband and I live on a little acreage there with our kids and I work at Dakota State University in Madison. I work as a learning support specialist activity director for a grant. We have three kids. We have Chloe, she's five and Luella's two and now Ingrid, who's just about three months.
How was your delivery with Ingrid?
My delivery with Ingrid actually was pretty good. You know, we do live just a little ways away and so my husband was pretty panicked about, "Are we gonna make it? Should we go...?" We live actually probably 15 minutes from a different hospital. And I was like, "No, we're going to Brookings. We will make it." And we did. And the delivery itself was for what goes into that actually wasn't so bad.
Why was it important to deliver at Brookings Health System?
It was really important for me to come back here because I felt that the care I received with my two daughters before this was excellent. Our first daughter Chloe, when she was born, she was just about 35 weeks, so she was early. It happened to be my birthday actually that I went into labor and we didn't probably know how freaked out we should be at the fact that we were that early. But we just had tremendous care from the doctors. I had a doctor and the baby had a doctor and they kept us really well informed and sort of gave us all of our options. And I think if we would've had all of that knowing that she then had to fly away on a helicopter without us, we really would have been extremely panicked. But I think the care we received and the information we received made us feel really comfortable. And then when we had Luella here and we started working with Dr. G and Mandy and all the nurses downstairs, it felt really comfortable and they make you feel like you matter to them and that, you know, I felt like the care was just going to be really good. So, when we moved to Jasper and then decided to have another child, my husband and I both decided that this was where we wanted to have our third child too.
How did the staff support you during delivery?
I think that the first thing is they really listened to us. You know, I really wanted to try to have all of my babies without medical intervention. You know, I didn't want to have that C-section if I didn't have to, or I didn't want to have the pain medicine if I didn't have to. And I didn't have to. Our first pregnancy we had the doula, and she was fantastic. It's free. What a great service that provides. She knew what to do and you know, how to help me be more comfortable and how to teach my husband to help me be more comfortable. So, then in our other deliveries, he was able to do those things. And for me, it was really important that I was able to like get up and move around and be on the bouncy ball if I needed to be or to be standing up. And so, they allowed us to do that and really just made us feel as comfortable as possible in that situation.
How did the new renovations affect your delivery experience?
It's kind of like a spa, right? I mean, for as much hard work and pain that delivery can bring, the facility was really excellent. And you know, the old facility, it seemed fine to me too, because I didn't know any different. But certainly the new area it really was comfortable. I was lucky enough to be kind of in the corner room. So, here I have these two big windows, just having the nurses in that central unit, having that little family area towards the back, that just feels like there's a little bit more space to be spread out maybe. And knowing that I had two other kids that were going to be coming up, they could be in the room with me and not disrupting everybody else that was around and the nurses didn't portray that that was bothersome that they were there either. So, yeah, I thought that was great. Everything was in the room. They could just plug all their machines in. And Ingrid never really had to leave my eyesight, which was great.
What did you appreciate most about your care?
The thing that I appreciated the most about my care was that everyone was really open to learning about me and my family and then also telling me little tidbits about them to make me feel really comfortable. They were super knowledgeable without being like over telling or saying, you're gonna do this or you have to do that. They just made it flow. It was just a process. You know, I did the baby class, my husband and I did that with our first child. And to me, what a great resource because it tells you what's gonna happen. And certainly, our first one, like what was supposed to happen didn't happen. She was early, but the process and the mechanics is the same, which gave me peace of mind knowing that, "Okay, this is supposed to happen, this is the next step. This is the next step. Okay, we're here." And so, I think all of that as a package, you get this education, you get this great staff and care and the doctor. And then the after delivery piece where you just get to be with your baby, with your family and just kind of try to figure out when you're gonna sleep next, right?
How was your postpartum recovery?
My postpartum recovery has been awesome. Ingrid was a 10.5-pound baby. And my grandma tells me that the chubbier they are the better because there's no elbows or shoulders to deal with and I think she might be right. And so, I've been really lucky. I felt really good after delivery and certainly had good checkups afterwards with Dr. G and nurse Mandy to make sure that everything was okay.
How did the Baby Café support your choice to breastfeed?
The new Baby Cafe was a great resource for me because I think that as mothers, we put a lot of pressure on ourselves as like we have to keep this baby alive, and now I'm not doing it right and they're starving or they're screaming. And to me, you know, the baby needs to eat. So, whether that is breast milk or whether that is formula, it's fine, but with this resource of the New Beginnings Café, the staff, they're so helpful to try to give you different techniques or tips to help make it work. And for me, that saved Ingrid and I for sure, I was kind of like, "Okay, maybe we're just gonna have to do the bottle. It's just not working." And then I was able to work with the staff and you know, one of the nurses actually checked in with me over the weekend to make sure that the baby was eating, that I wasn't feeling too stressed. And that was really great for me and really supportive of the staff.
What would you tell someone considering delivery at Brookings Health System?
I think that Brookings Health System is a great resource for this town, but also the surrounding towns. It's affordable, which is nice. And they give you a little packet of information that says this is probably what it's gonna cost. Now, there could be things that happen that change that, but they give you all the information ahead of time. They have resources that you can take advantage of, whether that's the classes beforehand or that's that new Baby Café afterwards and the staff has really knowledgeable. You're getting great doctors, you're getting great nurses, and you have a really updated and beautiful facility to deliver in too.
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