This month’s blog post will be my last post as Charlotte the student midwife. I have had a crazy last week on labour ward; on Monday I caught baby number 40 out of the 40 births I needed to qualify, I broke someone’s waters for the first time, I successfully sited a cannula (plastic tube that goes into the vein to feed drugs through- a painful procedure and an art that requires lots of practice to master) and today I have officially been signed off as fit to join the nursing and midwifery register meaning in a matter of weeks I will receive my registration and become a proper midwife. The excitement of finishing my training is (at least for now) keeping my ever-growing nerves of practising alone at bay and I am looking forward to a nice month off over the summer in which I plan to sleep for days, drink my body weight in gin and tonic and try not to have a complete breakdown about my impending midwife post.
The powers that be have suggested that for this blog post I reflect back on my time going through a-levels and results day as I am informed that this is a day that is looming for many of you. It seems all too appropriate that as I am about to finish my degree, I am reflecting on how my story as a student midwife began.
For those of you that have been following my blog since it began (thanks a million if you’re still with me by the way, that is some serious commitment?!) you will remember that for my a-levels I attended a sixth form in Leeds which is in the north of England and I have very fond memories of this time of my life. When I was picking which a-levels to do I think it’s fair to say I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life and this meant that when I had decided on midwifery, unfortunately my options as to which universities I could apply to had narrowed slightly as I had failed to pick biology, chemistry or physics. Luckily, I had a huge interest in mental health and had chosen to study psychology alongside geography, English language and history (all very relevant to midwifery as I’m sure you will agree-NOT) and there were a considerable amount of universities which accepted a social science for admission; that is, sociology, health and social students, psychology etc. It was in this small pool of available universities that alongside 4 well known northern universities, I discovered City, University of London. I loved the idea of living in the capital for a few years and I was hugely impressed with the clinical skills labs and equipment that City had available.
I was fascinated by pregnancy and birth and incredibly passionate about caring for people and by some miracle City university saw something in me that I didn’t even see in myself at that point and I have a lot to thank them for for this, I am in a job that I love with a career ahead of me full of exciting and fulfilling potentials. As my luck would have it even further, I was actually unsuccessful in obtaining the grades required for City university however because I had impressed so much at interview, this in essence saved my butt and secured me a place on a midwifery course and on with my journey. This is a lesson I try to instill in any potential student midwives I meet now, that interview is your one chance to show the university what your grades may fail to do so, leave that room with your name on the interviewer’s lips and your performance in their heads and you’re 90% of the way there.
Whatever happens for you guys on results day, one thing my university experience has taught me is that everything happens for a reason. If you are unsuccessful, that just means that something else is just around the corner, A-levels seem very important right now and rightly so as they affect your future in so many ways, however nothing is more important than your health and happiness. Every destination has thousands of paths to reach it and all the success and money in the world can’t guarantee your happiness. Best of luck to each and every one of you for results day, I’ll be routing for the next generation of midwives out there!