I am a Registered Midwife, International Board Certified Lactation Consultant and Tongue Tie Specialist. I also volunteer for the Association of Breastfeeding Mothers as Regional Supervisor for the East of England, and am a Trustee for the charity.
My journey to Midwifery began in 2008 where, as part of my IBCLC training, I attended a 'Womb to World' conference. At the conference, one of the speakers included a wonderfully funny and engaging lady called Ina May Gaskin, the author of 'Spiritual Midwifery'.
I was already a Breastfeeding Counsellor with the charity the 'Association of Breastfeeding Mothers', and was working hard towards my International Board Certified Lactation Consultant qualification. My own babies were all approaching school age and I was at a milestone in my life, deciding whether to return to secondary school teaching, or to try something else. Ina May Gaskin opened my whole world (in fact she exploded it!) through the way she presented pregnancy, birth and motherhood, and I left the conference having decided that I was not going to return to teaching (which actually I hated!) I was going to be a Midwife.
Two days later, my application to start training was delivered to the university, two weeks later I had an interview, and I commenced my training in 2009, qualifying in October 2012.
In Aug 2012, I was extremely fortunate to have the opportunity to travel to The Farm Midwifery Centre in Tennessee, and witness the amazing work of Ina May Gaskin (who I'd heard speak back in 2008) and Pamela Hunt (another original 'Farm Midwife') first hand.
At The Farm, I completed the Advanced Midwifery Workshop, and the course included many aspects of how to keep birth as physiological as possible.
At the end of the course, there's a ceremony in which the Farm Midwives Bless the participants hands. At each Birth I have attended, as my hands are ready to receive the new life - I am reminded of the ceremony and I truly believe my calling to be 'with woman'.
For me at the time, travelling to The Farm, symbolised the completion of a circle of events that led me to finding myself as a Midwife. However, I was naiieve- my journey to Tennessee wasn't the end of the journey-it was a new beginning.
My passion for a holistic approach to midwifery care has never left me. Once, I commented to a more senior NHS colleague that I had found it quite a surreal experience to be supporting a woman in labour, during a thunder and lightening storm, and the woman had been smiling and laughing! throughout her birth process and had literally radiated with joy. The senior midwife simply said to me that I "had spent too much time watching the woman" In my mind...what else was I to do?
I am humbled by the birth process and the families I serve.
My current blended family life finds me as a single parent to my daughter aged 17, and two sons, aged 14 and 12 and I have an incredibly supportive Boyfriend, who has two grown up children. In May 2018, we welcomed our first grandson, whose birth I was honoured to be present, and little Noah is now my cover star!
Our family time includes eating too many roast dinners and camping in our VW called 'Old Bill', and in my spare time enjoy walking and running with our crazy rescue puppy 'Blue'.