A group of nurses at an Arizona hospital were shocked to learn that not one, not two, but 16 of them are expecting little ones.
A dozen of the 16 pregnant intensive care nurses at Banner Desert Medical Center in Mesa showed off their baby bellies at a press conference on Friday, as they talked about being pregnant at the same time. Now, they say they’re happy to have each other on their journeys to motherhood.
“This is my first child, so having the support of people whoalready have children is really nice,” Rochelle Sherman, 28, who is 8 months pregnant, tells PEOPLE. “There’s a lot in common. We have that support system and we can bring up everything. We’re all open with each other and it’s so nice.”
The women’s due dates fall between September and February. Sherman told the Associated Press that the nurses didn’t realize just how many of them were expecting until they started a Facebook group.
“At first I was like, this is crazy. But it was exciting,” Rachel Cosgriff, 26, (who is 6 months pregnant with a baby girl), tells PEOPLE. “It’s my first baby, so I love having someone to talk to about it. We’re nurses, so we’re not afraid to discuss the dirty details with each other.
“I thought it was awesome and I’m excited for after we have our kids. There’s so many of us — there will be playdates and more parenting advice to give to each other.”
It hasn’t been all good, though. Samantha Teel, 28, who is due in October, says there’s one particular struggle that plagues the pregnant nurses.
“The hardest part has been finding someone to help us lift and turn our patients,” she says. Still, Teel adds, their coworkers have been helpful and excited about the baby boom. So much so that they’re even planning to hold a group baby shower on Friday for the women.
“I wasn’t expecting one because there’s so many of us,” Cosgriff says of the shower. “We love being together. [They’ve] put in a lot of effort for it.”
She adds: “It will be fun to all come together and talk more about our babies. We’re getting closer to our due dates — and there will be cake!”
The approaching due dates won’t put a strain on the hospital, though. Officials have organized a pool of floating nurses to make sure shifts are covered as the women begin taking their 12-week maternity leave.