Everything involved in pregnancy and birth is fascinating! Being a midwife is 100% vocational!
I work in a medium sized unit, delivering around 4,500 babies per year. We have a level 3 neonatal unit so we have high risk women coming to us eg: threatened preterm labour, moderate and severe foetal/maternal abnormalities. I look after low and high risk women during their pregnancy, labour and also postnatally. I assist normal vaginal deliveries and ensure mother and baby are safe at all times. I try and ensure, for mothers and their families, that their experience is a great and positive one! It really is fascinating delivering babies, ready for life; It’s both amazing and an honour to share the moment with mothers and relatives.
However, like any NHS job, there are challenges and we are understaffed. Saying that, every day is different and there is always something new to learn. To witness the close bond between mother and baby is beautiful. So, I would say to anyone thinking about midwifery as a career: if you feel passionate about midwifery and see becoming a midwife as a vocation, then do it!
As midwives, we have to work well as part of a team. It’s a hard job but we can support one another. I’ve been thinking of initiating a dedicated wall space where everyone can write something positive about each other and we have Trust ‘WOW’ awards too.
My advice for patients is to talk to their doctor or midwife about any concerns or worries. There is also a wealth of information in their hand held notes. If they have any queries, they can contact their community midwife or their maternity triage midwife in case of any immediate concerns or emergencies, for example, feeling unwell or reduced foetal movements etc. We are always there for patients in good times and also sad times, such as grief. I know through personal experience that we are valued, which means a lot to all us midwives. Also, patients should always feel free to speak up and if they wish, provide feedback – positive or negative.
I really hope there will be more qualified midwives in the future and staffing levels improve for the benefit of everyone.
Finally, I love being a midwife because: I love the feeling you get from every delivery – it really is amazing!