Thank you Johnson & Johnson for sponsoring this post.
Caring for Women Like Susan:
The notifications on my phone are flashing urgently. It isn’t the normal notification of a sale at Zulily or a message alerting me of an impending rain storm. These are the kind of notifications that require my immediate attention; one of my friends needs me.
She sent me three text messages within the past few minutes and she’s not normally one of my rapidly texting friends. I know this is an urgent matter. My friend, let’s call her Susan for the sake of her anonymity, has been trying to get pregnant for the past several years.
Several of her pregnancies resulted in heart breaking miscarriages and then there were the months of trying without any results. I have been by her side through it all, celebrating every set of two blue lines and mourning when the cramping and spotting started.
Today her text messages are urgent, but for all the right and oh-so-happy reasons. She’s having contractions, real labor contractions, after carrying this pregnancy to a full 38 weeks. My heart skips a beat with every incoming message, as she lets me know the status of her soon-to-be delivery.
She’s on her way to the hospital and we continue to text through her triage, being admitted and getting settled in what will be her baby’s first room. I shed a few happy tears for her and her husband, as I know how much heartbreak and anxiety it took to get to this point.
My thoughts turn to how fortunate we are to live in 2018, where we have technology and medical advancements on our side.
Susan’s story would have had a much different outcome 100 years ago, even 50 years ago. Her pregnancy journey could very well have come to a halt after her first miscarriage, if she didn’t get the immediate medical care she needed.
During this pregnancy, the “7 Minute Wellness” app from Johnson & Johnson helped Susan through the most uncomfortable times by encouraging her to do gentle exercises and increasing her energy.
Johnson & Johnson has since the 1800s dedicated their work to improve the lives of women and families by creating products that were innovative and pioneering for their time.
Imagine a world without disposable feminine sanitary products or disposable baby diapers. Yeah, I can’t either.
Images Courtesy: Johnson & Johnson Archives
Caring for Women, A Journey Through Time:
The history of Johnson & Johnson products is fascinating. Check out for yourself.
There is a lot of educational and entertaining content on the OurStory.jnj.com, for the history-lover in your family.
- In the 1890s, when most child births took place at home, Johnson & Johnson teamed up with a group of obstetricians and created “Dr. Simpson’s Maternity Packets.” The kit contained things like sterile sutures, antiseptic soap, flannel for the baby and sanitary napkins for the mother.
- Later in 1897, Johnson & Johnson started to mass-produce “Lister’s Towels” sanitary napkins. These disposable feminine products gave women a more reliable and sanitary form for menstrual protection.
- In 1902 Johnson & Johnson came out with a ground-breaking book for that time: “Hygiene in Maternity.” It was a small manual, sized to fit in a woman’s purse, sharing information on things like how to prepare for labor, how to calculate due dates and even recommended moderate exercise. So really, it was the-turn-of-the-20th century’s version of Baby Center – and probably just as popular, in relative terms.
- By the time 1904 rolled around, Johnson & Johnson once again found a way to meet the needs of women and families. Because the growing workforce of women found themselves short on time to scrub and wash baby diapers, the first disposable diapers were created: “Lister’s Sanitary Diapers.”
- Through the 20th century, Johnson & Johnson continued to introduce and improve products meant to make a woman’s life more comfortable, safer and healthier.
- The first prescription contraceptive gel in 1931 put the power of birth control in the woman’s hands.
- In 1971 the feminine sanitary pad was improved to include an adhesive strip, making belts, hooks and special garments obsolete.
- The 1980s brought faster and more reliable at-home pregnancy tests and ovulation kits. Imagine trying to get pregnant without the power of tests you can take at home?!
- In the 21st century, Johnson & Johnson has empowered women through digital technology, reaching expectant women in underserved communities around the world. Through the use of mobile messaging programs and apps, pregnant women are educated on proper pregnancy and postpartum care.
While Susan is safely delivering her long awaited baby in the safety and comfort of a hospital-setting, it’s not lost on me how far we have come. The lives of women and families have improved by leaps and bounds with the innovative and pioneering products created by Johnson & Johnson over the past 120 years.
I am excited to see where companies like Johnson & Johnson will take women’s health and wellness years from now.
By the way, Susan had a beautiful girl!
I was selected for this opportunity as a member of CLEVER and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.