Note to a certain "old little lady": Google "Rudy Huxtable."
Keshia Knight Pulliam, who rose to fame playing the character on The Cosby Show as a child in the '80s, gave birth to her first child, daughter Ella Grace, last month via C-section at an Atlanta hospital.
On an episode of her Kandidly Keshia podcast that was posted Friday, the 37-year-old actress said "everything was kept very private" for "safety reasons" and that her doctor and nurses did an "amazing job" taking care of her. However, she was offended by a lactation specialist, who not only had no idea who she was but also assumed she was an poor mother in need.
"Bless this old little lady's heart," Pulliam said. "This old little white lady...she's like about 70 years old."
The actress said the woman handed her a hospital pamphlet, opened to a page that contained "about 30 different numbers and resources" for mothers and told her, "We have some great programs that you may want to take advantage of that you may need. Um, WIC is a great program."
The Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) provides federal grants to states to provide basic nutritional needs of low-income pregnant women, new mothers and children up to age 5, usually via grocery vouchers. To qualify, a person's gross income must be at or below 185 percent of the U.S. poverty income guidelines.
"So I guess she saw this little black girl with the little baby by herself and on the door, I didn't realize that they'd put like a faux last name and the last name was Brown," Pulliam continued. "So I guess she saw 'Miss. Brown' and was like, 'She probably needs some WIC.' So she said, 'Yes, WIC is...an amazing program that you may want to take advantage of and I don't know if you have insurance-' that's when I stopped her, I said, 'Ma'am, I have excellent insurance but thank you.'"
The actress also said the woman did not help her learn to breastfeed.
"Like, she didn't want to touch me," she said. "They literally will like, guide your boob, show you how to hold it, put it in the baby's mouth. This lady was not trying to touch my little brown boobie. Not at all."
In the end, her doula, or support coach, requested that another lactation specialist be sent.
"I get it, it's about showing the services that are offered," Pulliam said. "And I probably wouldn't have been offended had she [pointed out] several of the services [and not just] WIC and the fact that 'if you don't have insurance...'"
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Meanwhile, the fake name on her hospital door almost fooled a nurse. Who definitely did know who she was.
"I'm sitting there, I'd had a rough night, Ella had decided she was going to be up and fussy and cluster feeding. I'm holding her, my head scarf has spun around on my head, it's like cocked up to the side, I got one eye open," Pulliam said. "And she comes in and she goes...'Oh, Miss Brown...' and I looked at her, 'cause again, I didn't realize they put 'Brown' on the last name of my door. So I look, I'm like, 'Ma'am, I think you have the wrong room. I'm Pulliam.'"
"And then she looks at me, she goes, 'Oh my God! Oh my God! It's you! It's you! Oh my God!' Has a complete panic fan-out attack and was like, 'Oh my God, I've been stalking your Instagram. I knew it! I knew you had the baby!'" she said. "And then it was funny, 'cause then she tried to reel herself in and compose herself...but it was the cutest thing. I couldn't do anything but laugh after I kind of like gained my focus, 'cause my eyes- I had been up all night."
Pulliam was rushed to the hospital after she was found to have dangerously high blood pressure at a routine doctor's appointment and was then induced to start labor, which took at least 12 hours. Pulliam ultimately ended up getting a C-section.
But while waiting in the delivery room during the labor process, she received a stark reminder that things could have been worse;
"We're in the room and at about 1 am we hear this bloodcurdling scream from the next room," Pulliam said. "So much so it literally like wakes me up out of my kind of light slumber in the room. Like it made everyone stand up straight."
Turns out, another pregnant woman in labor had waited too long to get to the hospital and delivered her child in the hallway outside the room, without medication.
"I was like, 'Oh God, please don't do that to me,'" Pulliam said.