There is a special bond that often develops between a woman and her obstetrician during pregnancy. After all, a woman visits her doctor many times throughout those months leading up to giving birth. She grows to trust them with her body and the new life within her, so the moment her doctor walks through the door when she is in labor, there’s immediate relief.
But what happens when you and your doctor are pregnant at the same time? For two women in Washington it happened, but that didn’t stop one badass doctor from taking care of business.
Dr. Hilary Conway tells Babble that it is very important to her to be there for all of her patients’ deliveries. “I started telling my patients I was pregnant around 12 weeks so that they could choose to either stay as my patient or transfer care if they knew I’d be delivered by the time they did,” she explains.
One of Conway’s patients, Katie Moss, was expecting to deliver twins one month after her due date. Dr. Conway explains, “My due date was one month before Katie’s and we were planning an induction for my delivery (due to maternal age). During our last visit, we both expressed sadness that I would not likely be there to deliver her.” This was due to the fact that twins are often delivered early, between 35 and 36 weeks.
Dr. Conway was still hopeful to be there for the delivery, however. “I did tell her that I’d be there if she delivered any time prior to December 12 (the date of my induction),” she explains.
I can only imagine how difficult the uncertainty of how things would ultimately play out must have been for both women. Fortunately, as Conway puts it, it all came together perfectly due to “a lot of serendipity” and because this tough as nails doctor delivered her patient’s twins just hours after giving birth herself.
Dr. Conway says that when she went in for her induction on December 12, she was saddened to know that she would likely miss her patient’s delivery. She tells Babble that her own delivery went smoothly. She pushed for just twelve minutes and was up walking the halls by that evening.
When Conway received a text from Moss just hours later informing her that her water, she walked to the nurses station to see if her patient had been admitted. As it turned out, she was right down the hall, so the doctor went in to check on her patient.
“Within about 30-60 minutes of me learning that she was there, she was ready to deliver,” Conway explains. At this point, Conway decided she would deliver these babies even though she had just given birth herself mere hours before. As Moss was being moved to the operating room (where twins are delivered in case of emergency), Conway stopped by the nurses station to feed her new baby Verna one last time before joining her patient.
Dr. Conway thought of everything, stating, “My partner Dr. Elizabeth Jacobson (who was on call) came in for the delivery in case Verna needed me.”
The delivery of the twins went beautifully. It was an amazing feat, but Conway is quick to deflect praise:
“People think it’s amazing that I helped Katie deliver twins after delivering my own baby 14 hours earlier, but to me what’s amazing is the fact that the timing was so perfect and the support I received from my partner and the nurses. It took a village … as these stories often do.”
What an incredible example of a woman’s strength, and as Conway puts it, “ … something that will bond Katie and I as doctor/patient/friend forever.”
Congratulations to the new mothers!