Being Pregnant during a Pandemic
Like many Americans, I transitioned to working from home in March of 2020. In that time, I’ve fostered my first puppy, got into (and out of) collecting houseplants, raised some monarch caterpillars into butterflies, binged many TV series, and in what will be my biggest endeavor yet, I’m expecting my first child.
Being pregnant while a highly contagious virus ravages the world is not ideal. I remember being very nervous stepping into the hospital for the first ultrasound at 8 weeks as my husband was turned away at the door; only the patient is allowed in. I was double masked and gloved up.
At that time, I was still in a state of disbelief – excited at the prospect but not wanting to go too far down the rabbit hole if the 2 home pregnancy tests were somehow faulty. But, as I laid on the reclined exam chair and listened to her heartbeat for the first time, all doubts faded away, and they were replaced by exuberance and a twinge of sadness that my partner wasn’t there to experience it in-person with me. We’re now in month 7 and we couldn’t be more excited!
Though I spent most of the story talking about my pregnancy experience, I also want to highlight the incredible work the staff and doctors at Kaiser Permanente is doing to mitigate and manage the effects of the virus. I’ve been to many of the hospitals in the area, and seen when the lines for COVID-19 tests snaked in the parking lot, and I have always been treated with kindness and patience, even at the height of wave 2 and services were severely impacted.
In addition to the excellent benefits in my plan and thorough lab work, my partner and I are enrolled in virtual classes to prepare us, though I doubt we can ever be fully ready. Sure, this experience is bizarre and I would have loved to be able to be able to go through it with other expecting moms, but I’m so thankful for the excellent care I’ve received in spite of the pandemic.
So thank you, Kaiser Permanente! I’ll continue to do my part in taking care of me and my baby, and I know I’ll be in good hands when it comes time to deliver her into the world.— Vivian, Garden Grove.