Things got hotter on the latest part of PBS ‘ Call the midwife when Nurse Nancy got involved in an adoption dispute involving expectant teenage mother Jeanette and her mother, Doris.
Initially, Jeanette agreed to her mother’s plans because Doris argued that Jeanette had too much collegial potential to raise a baby at such a young age. But Doris’ methods turned out to be draconian, and she did not want Jeanette to see the child’s teenage father, Glen.
Jeanette, who was due to give birth in a few days, developed preeclampsia and had to be hospitalized – and in that time away from Doris, she found a way to see Glen. Jeanette gave her letter to Glen to Nurse Nancy, who delivered it by mail, and Glen arrived shortly after. Nurse Nancy warned him that visiting hours had not begun, but because she had a soft spot for Jeanette, the midwife in training told Glen that he could stay for 15 minutes and sneak out the back door.
Not until she said this did Doris arrive and catch Jeanette and Glen laughing and talking like the best buds. Doris had him removed and complained to Nurse Nancy’s supervisor, then Nurse Shelagh reprimanded Nancy’s nurse for breaking the record. Nurse Nancy explained that she liked Jeanette and did not want her to be sad, but it was next door. Nurse Shelagh told her that Jeanette’s complicated adoption situation was already stressful enough without inserting unnecessary histrionics. Therefore, it was best to do to follow the rules.
Frustrated that everyone thought they knew better than her, Jeanette tried to escape from the maternity ward. Ms. Higgins spotted Jeanette and followed closely, after which Jeanette tried to run away from her and fell down the stairs. The only thing Jeanette hurt was her wrist, but the fright made her realize she could have hurt the baby. She decided to stay in the maternity ward and went into labor quickly.
Just before the birth, Jeanette asked nurse Shelagh to send Doris away. Doris’ feelings were hurt, but nurse Shelagh understood why Jeanette did not want her mother in the delivery room. Nurse Nancy, meanwhile, was glad Doris had to look far from. She felt Doris was a bully, but Nurse Shelagh disagreed, arguing that Doris simply wanted the best for her child. Nurse Shelagh appreciated Nurse Nancy’s passion and told her she would benefit from training compassion instead.
Jeanette eventually gave birth to a beautiful little boy, whom she and Glen called Oliver (after Jeanette’s favorite fictional character, Oliver Twist). Shortly after, nurse Nancy Doris sobbed in the hall. Doris had been the one who called Glen so he could be there to meet her son, but the thought of her baby having a baby overwhelmed her, and she eventually broke down. It was at this point that Nurse Nancy understood what Nurse Shelagh had been trying to tell her: Doris was not a monster. She was a mother.
Now, in a perfect world, episode 5 would have ended there. Doris would have proved more good than bad, and everyone would have lived happily ever after. But the day after Oliver was born, Doris rolled up the delivery room with an adoption agent and scooped up the baby. It all happened so fast that Mrs. Higgins barely had time to cut off her name band. The swift action left not only Jeanette and Glen a wreck, but Mrs. Higgins in tears. Jeanette had been looking forward to spending more time with Oliver before he was adopted, and Doris took that time from her.
Shortly after nurses Shelagh and Nancy had demarcated Jeanette’s breast so her milk would dry up, Jeanette and Glen resumed the connection. Although it was unclear where they would live or what they would do, one thing was certain: Doris would not be involved in their lives.
Elsewhere in the East End …
* Dr. Turner and sister Julienne diagnosed a little girl named Elaine with phenylketonuria (or PKU), after which she received much-needed treatment and was put on a specialized diet. And as Elaine slowly got better, parents Vera and George welcomed a little boy whose name … was never revealed. (Luckily he did not have PKU.)
* Nurse Trixie and Matthew forged more ties as she helped him find a competent and caring nanny for baby Jonathan. And nurse Lucille thanked everyone heartily for making Cyril and her feel at home when they announced their engagement.
What did you think of this week Call the midwife? Throw your thoughts in the comments.