This #featurefriday we hear from Rosie, our founder, board member and all round ray of sunshine! Rosie is a mum to three. She is also an experienced Perinatal Educator and Mentor and has worked for a number of years with mums and babies in the Scottish Borders. She also has extensive experience working with vulnerable people and equality groups to reduce inequalities. Rosie let's us know her Nurture story:
In 2013 when I was pregnant with my third child, I trained as a perinatal educator and began teaching antenatal and baby classes. Over the next two years I met and got to know so many mums from all walks of life on their journey into motherhood.
Very quickly I realised that quite a few mums in my classes were really struggling mentally and emotionally and I found myself offering lots of support outside of my classes. Often mums would stay at the end of the session to talk to me and would phone and text me for support. I would find myself inviting them for a coffee to chat things through, sending information so they could make informed choices and checking in with them to see if they were okay. My time however was limited (I was running classes, bringing up my three small children while also juggling a demanding job with Scottish Borders Council) and I always wanted to do more; after all I knew how important that support was and what a difference it could make.
I reflected on my own experience of postnatal depression and how lonely the journey to recovery was. I remember clearly feeling that I was the only one struggling, I was anxious about everything and second guessed myself all the time. I felt I couldn't talk to any of my family or friends about it honestly because I didn't want them to see how much I was struggling inside or become a burdon. I loved being a mum and I loved my baby so much but I felt broken and couldn't see how to make things better. I felt so guilty and alone.
When I did finally find someone I could confide in things started to get better. It's true what they say "A problem shared is a problem halved".
The simple act of sharing how I was feeling lessened the load and with gentle reassurance my confidence began to blossom until one day I found myself out of the fog and fully able to relax and enjoy being a mum.
I began to imagine what a difference could be made if there was a support service for new and expectant mums in the Borders who found themselves struggling. A service that provided peer support, a safe non judgemental person to talk to who had time to listen, was well informed and who understood what it was like to find yourself struggling when you become a mum. I was also passionate about providing women with evidence based information so they could make their own informed choices and believed that all mums should be supported to be the kind of mum they want to be.
Kirsty was teaching with me at the time and I chatted to her about my ideas and it turned out she had very similar views. She particularly wanted to ensure the service was accessible to all mums especially those who struggle to access support, education and baby classes.
And that's when Nurture was born. Our Board was formed by mums holding the same values and we applied to the Lottery for funding to trial the idea. In December 2015 we were granted the funding and I made a huge leap of faith, left my job and had six months to see if we could make it work. And as they say the rest is history!!
I am so incredibly proud and greatful to all the women who have become involved - their amazing dedication, kindness and commitment to supporting other mums is truly uplifting and inspiring.
It blows my mind to see how far we have come in the last three years! I can't wait to see what the future has to hold.
Funniest Mummy Moment: Running out of milk and making my husband a cuppa with expressed milk! - Best Coffee he ever had (shhhh he still doesn't know!)
Happiest Memory:I have lot's but one of my favourites is probably having all my kids on the bed opening Christmas stockings!
Favourite Treat:A cosy bath with candles, music and a glass of something lovely! I also love a night out dancing!