It’s my personal opinion that OB nurses are the coolest, and one such OB nurse, Daphney Jones Walker, is enjoying a little well-deserved time in the spotlight after one of her patients, a young mom named Brittany Allard Perryman, shared her picture in a Facebook post that has now gone viral. And the surprising and sweet twist to her story? Daphney had first cared for Brittany 25 years ago — when she delivered Brittany as a brand-new baby.
The image on the top is Daphney holding Brittany as a baby after she cared for her mother as her labor and delivery nurse, and the picture on the bottom is of Daphney holding Brittany’s baby, Caroline, whom Daphney also helped deliver.
Brittany actually labored all day under Daphney’s care, went through the next shift with a new nurse, and then was back under Daphney’s care in the morning when she finally delivered her baby girl. It’s almost like her body knew she needed Daphney to be the one to welcome little Caroline into the world.
In her Facebook post honoring Daphney, Brittany wrote:
“I would like to tell you all a little story about the nurse in the photos. Her name is Daphney Jones Walker, and God saw it fit to make her our nurse. I say ‘our’ to include not only myself and Caroline, but my mom as well.
On September 9, 1990, Dawn Ellard welcomed me into the world. My entire life, I have been told about Daphney. I’ve heard about how wonderful she was, how supportive and amazing she was. I’ve listened to Mom sweetly remember her hundreds of times.
Fast forward 25 years, 2 months and 29 days and there I was, with the nurse who helped deliver me. I showed her our picture from many years ago. I brought it to the hospital because I wanted to meet this woman who was an angel to my mother. I wanted Mom’s special surprise to be seeing Daphney again.
When Daphney walked into the room, Mom immediately knew who she was — from 25 years ago. Mom couldn’t believe it! She jumped up and hugged Daphney, and we all cried. It was the night before Caroline was born. We shared giggles, stories and love that evening. Daphney took care of us all until her shift was over and it was time for her to leave.
I labored all day but Caroline just wasn’t quite ready to come out. Then Daphney came back. There I was, 25 years after she helped me take my first breath, relying on sweet Daphney. Trusting her when she said it would be okay, following her directions, listening to the blessings she was speaking over our Caroline. Caroline came that evening, with Daphney by our side.
What an honor and special blessing. We love you, Daphney!!!!”
This story is made all the sweeter because to this day, Brittany’s mother, Dawn, refers to Daphney as an “angel” nurse after she comforted her during a difficult delivery, in which she had no family present.
“She was terrified,” Brittany told AL.com of her mother, “… but it was all okay, because Daphney was there. She was an angel to my mom, and mom said she wouldn’t have made it without Daphney.”
Brittany, like so many mothers who will never forget the women that helped them through their babies’ births, just wants nurses like Daphney to realize the difference they do make.
“I want her to have evidence of all the lives she has touched … I know a lot of nurses shadow her, and I want them to see that if you take care of and love your patients, you can change their lives,” she said.
And here are just two of those lives that Daphney has changed — Brittany with her mom, looking perhaps a little different than she last saw them 25 years ago.
Daphney, who has been a nurse for 41 years (you go, girl!) at Brookwood Medical Center in Alabama, is referred to as the “baby whisperer” and unsurprisingly, has kept completely humble about the entire thing.
“It is all of you who make my day,” she wrote on Facebook in response to all of the attention. “I get to share such an important day with so many precious, wonderful families. That is a blessing I thank Jesus for all of the time!”
One of the things I loved most about working in OB myself was learning from all the seasoned nurses like Daphney who had been there for years and years. These are women who have seen some stuff, let me tell you, and like a little kid listening to a story with wide eyes, I would beg them to tell me the stories of delivering babies, babies, and more babies.
I’ve always thought it’s an amazing thing that these nurses have touched so many lives and then go about their normal days, not even realizing the incredible impact they have had on a family’s life. I know that I remember, in vivid detail, all of the small gestures of kindness that my labor and delivery nurses gave me during my deliveries that I treasure to this day — just like Brittany, her mom, and daughter will treasure the memory of Daphney for the rest of their lives.