It’s not something many people like doing. I hate to be out of my comfort zone and I much prefer to tread safer waters most of the time. The thing is, life has a way of opening your eyes and presenting opportunities or situations that you just can’t refuse. That’s what happened to me yesterday.
A while ago, I signed up as a media volunteer for the Birth Trauma Association. Those who know me or know my blog will know that the Birth Trauma Association is a charity that is very close to my heart. It is a charity that has helped me through many a dark day and has allowed me to meet the most amazing of women (and men) who have been through similar situations. The members of the Facebook group are supportive and understanding. The entire charity exists to help and support women and their families like me and mine and without them, I know my life would be very different now.
The thing is, I didn’t know they existed at first. Birth Trauma was a something that I thought only I had been through. That’s why it is so important to raise awareness and to educate. Becoming a media volunteer was a natural step for me after starting this blog and Maternity Matters. I wanted to share my story, with the hope of helping another person in a similar situation.
Yesterday I spoke to a producer at the BBC. I told her my story in relation to the national shortage of midwives. She told me that she wanted to send a cameraman over to interview me. And that’s where I found my comfort zone slipping away…
I’ve steered clear from vlogging. I got my children to star in my MADs Blog Awards finalist vlog. I write it so much better than I can say it. I naiively thought that being a media volunteer meant simply providing a quote for print. The idea of being on camera, speaking, sent me into a panic.
I didn’t sleep a wink. I woke early with that kind of sinking feeling you get when you know you have to do something you really would rather you didn’t have to. Yes, I speak to large groups of people for a living. But they are children. They don’t point cameras and lights in my face. They don’t present me to the nation to be judged.
Luckily, I gave myself a mental shake and reminded myself why this was so important. If the government are going to admit to the problems that the NHS have with midwife shortages and the impact this is having on women like me, then doing this interview should never have been in question. I owed this to my son, to the experience we had. I owed this to the promise I made, that I would do everything I could to make sure this didn’t happen again. At least to us.
I know that serious changes need to be made so that women can feel confident in every single hopsital in England when it comes to giving birth. It shouldn’t matter where you are; every woman deserves to be cared for. If my tiny contribution in all of this makes even a tiniest difference, or rings a bell with just one person tomorrow, then I will feel it has all been worth it.
I enjoyed the experience. Talking about the birth of my children in this context and with my beautiful son playing on the floor infront of me was actually empowering. I didn’t cry. I relayed the events in a calm and even manner- something I have never been able to do before. I found that speaking about my son’s trauamtic entry into the world was therapeutic and I left for work this afternoon thinking: I did something good today.
You might not watch it. It doesn’t matter. One person will. And maybe it will make a tiny difference to that person tomorrow.