TROY, Texas – Giving birth does not stop just because we are in the middle of a pandemic.
New parents are learning first-hand childbirth in the COVID-19 era may be a little different than normal.
Kristan Monk, who lives in Troy, gave birth three weeks ago.
“We were going to have people come to the house and meet her, and we couldn’t do that. She’s three weeks old and has not met any of our family,” says Monk.
Baby Aislin was born at Baylor Scott and While Medical Center in Temple during an unprecedented time.
“They screened us before we went into the hospital, and they asked for my husbands ID to make sure that he was my only visitor,” says Monk.
New policy at the Medical Center includes only one visitor in the delivery room and post-partum room, a big change from when Monk gave birth three years ago to her son Elgin.
“There were so many people there. Everybody wanted to be there to meet him. It was full all through labor, and even afterwards there was so many people there,” she says.
Their second baby was stillborn, and family never got to meet her.
“All of our family is not getting to meet this baby, too. It’s really, really hard on us because we were excited to share her, you know,” says Monk.
The only way family has been able to meet baby Aislin is through a window.
“Having a new baby with no help from family is really hard. I commend anybody that has to do this without having to be in a pandemic,” says Monk.
With her husband Cody, being an essential worker in Austin, Kristan fears he might bring the virus home.
“I told him, like, no more gas station stops or anything like that until this is over, because I’m terrified,” says Monk.
She says family has been able to pitch in from the outside.
“If we run out of diapers, they will just drop some off on the porch for us, or groceries, they’ll drop them on the porch for us,” says Monk.
To all expectant mothers, she has this advice:
“Don’t be afraid to reach out if you need help. I know that it’s kind of limited right now, but I promise you that people will find a way to help you as much as they can right now because they know post-partum is hard. And especially in the middle of a pandemic, whatever is limited on what you can do. So definitely reach out if you need some help.”