In September, my wife had our third child. This is the third time we've gone through the experience at UVA. The first occasion happened in 2014. My wife was about a week past her due date and convinced the physician during an ultrasound that we were going in today. When we arrived we met the triage nurse, Kiki Suphal. She and my wife had an instant connection. She was everything you would want in someone who was going to take care of you. She and my wife made such a good connection that she ended up changing assignments and becoming our primary nurse for the shift. She actually stayed a few extra hours to help support us through the night. The next morning, we finally had our first child and over the next several days, Kiki came by to check on us even though we weren't on her unit anymore.
Two years later my wife went into labor with our daughter and we found ourselves again making our way to the 8th floor. This time it was on a Saturday afternoon and as we rolled onto the unit, we were greeted by Kiki. You wouldn't believe how grateful we were to see her and she once again ended up taking us on as part of her assignment. Again, she would stop in over the next three days to check on us. It's those moments and experiences that people always remember.
This past January my wife found out she was pregnant again and as we got closer to the due date, I reached out to Kiki to see if she would be working on the date of our scheduled c-section. Sadly, it happened to be that she was going on vacation that day but she said she would come in on that morning to care for us anyway because she wasn't technically leaving town until the afternoon. I had no doubt she would be there. I can't tell you how privileged we felt that this experience would include the same nurse who was there for our first two deliveries.
When we arrived that morning, my wife was prepped and near ready to go into the OR. As she said she would, Kiki arrived and was there to ready to care for my wife. She attended to us for the next few hours and finally left to go on vacation at the expense of being late for her fiancé.
We had exceptional experiences with all three of the deliveries at UVA. We had three OB physicians and even had two post-partum units across the three admissions. Kiki was the constant across all three. Her ability to connect on a personal level, provide compassionate care and help us all feel at ease will always stick with us. She always has a smile on her face. She demonstrates the demeanor that we should all have in this line of work. No matter how tough things are, or can be, she would never hint at it or let you know about it. She is a true professional.
During this last admission, we learned that Kiki is a preceptor for UVA nursing students. I can't think of someone better to help guide and shape nursing practice among upcoming nurses. If each of her students takes away from her rotation what we experienced, they will go far in their profession. We, UVA, are lucky to have "Kikis" caring for our patients.