For most women, there is no greater joy than being a mother. From hearing their baby’s first cry to touching her firstborn’s skin, these precious moments are ones that will forever be etched in her memory. Inside every delivery suite is a whole new life and each childbirth story is often one to remember.
In celebration of Mother’s Day (observed on 9 May), meet two nurses from the National University Hospital (NUH) who will be showing us what a day is like as midwives in the delivery suite. Senior Staff Nurse Hazbiba Rahizad and Assistant Nurse Clinician Tan Lay Hua look back on their own motherhood journeys and pay tributes to one of the role models in their lives – their mothers.
Call it a mother’s instincts but my mum always had an inkling that I would ultimately work in midwifery. She was not surprised when I told her that this was the nursing specialisation that I wanted to pursue. My mum even recalled how I used to pretend being in labour at a young age of five (haha).
As a midwife, every day is unique. My journey with the patients begins as soon as they step into the delivery suite. I check in on their condition from time to time, and make sure they are comfortable. When it is time for the mum to go into labour, this is when things can get intense especially if any unforeseen complications arise. As nurses trained in this field, we must be fast, agile and constantly thinking on our feet!
National University Hospital Senior Staff Nurse Hazbiba Rahizad
I see my role as more than just helping to deliver a baby safely, the journey continues even after that. I get to impart some basic parentcraft skills such as bathing, burping, breastfeeding techniques and more to both parents. This helps build their confidence as they embark on their parenthood journey together.
Hazbiba with her husband and three children
I realised the importance of having the support from my loved ones especially after being a mother. I am now a mother of three and with every birth comes greater commitments and responsibilities. My mum had played an instrumental role in caring for me and my children when they were still infants; I could see that she really prioritised our well-being. She took time off from work during my confinement so that I could get ample rest. Not only that, she was my personal confinement meal chef and post-natal masseuse too!
Meet Hazbiba’s super-mum!
If I could describe my mum in two words, it would be strong and selfless. Even when my late dad fell ill, she remained collected in front of my sisters and me. But deep down, we know it was a difficult period for her, just as it was for us.
To my super-mum, you have shaped me to be the person I am today, always being strong for the family and always giving us your all. For all that you have done, thank you mum.
True #happinurse in midwifery
I started off in the neonatal intensive care unit and did not expect myself to specialise in midwifery. But as chance would have it, an opportunity came for me to further pursue my nursing career in this field. Since then, I have never looked back.
One of the best things about midwifery is that I get to see the true happiness on a mother’s face when she first sees her baby. That experience itself has made my entire nursing career most rewarding.
National University Hospital Assistant Nurse Clinician Tan Lay Hua
In many ways, my job has prepared me for my own motherhood journey. With first-hand knowledge on some of the skills that most first-time mothers do not know such as managing labour pain and parentcraft, I feel more confident to take my new role as a mother. I even impart some of these skills to my family and friends!
I vividly recall my post-natal days after delivering my firstborn. Even though my husband was there to help out with household duties, I am also thankful that my mum was around during my confinement. While I had the practical knowledge to care for my children, my mum on the other hand, had her own ways of ensuring that I get my own TLC (tender loving care) during this period too.
Lay Hua and her family
Looking back, being a mother of two has gifted me with countless unforgettable memories. I have learnt to appreciate the little sacrifices my family has done for me, especially my mum. One thing that I’ll never forget is how she would always set aside some food for me to eat on days that I end my shift late when I just started out as a nurse. The warmth I felt whenever I come home to her and her homecooked food is irreplaceable. It is, as they call it, a mother’s way of showing her unconditional love.