December 21, 2016, by Cara
The First Semester – Growing
At the very end of my first semester as a student midwife, it is important to reflect. There have been a lot of “firsts”. Our cohort has completed the first module, submitted our first assessment and completed our first placement. A part of that has meant pushing ourselves outside of our comfort zones at times and trying something even when you know you are likely to fail first time. However, this has allowed for a great deal of triumph when things go from a ‘first attempt’ to a ‘successful attempt’. In my first placement a personal triumph was the first time I lead a postnatal visit with only supervision, so much so that I did a little happy dance afterwards! We have all had those moments where we have succeeded as well as the moments when things didn’t go entirely to plan. Looking back, it is important to embrace the times when you fail at something or get it wrong, these are the times when we grow.
In order to grow, we learn. Yet this does not always mean from our lecturers in university, but also our mentors, colleagues, ourselves and the families we care for. My own mentor has taught me that the most important things we will learn will be from the women we care for. Over the past six weeks the midwives I have worked with have shown me the kind of midwife I would like to be. Also, lecturers have shown how as the future of midwifery we can use research to improve maternity care for women. While at times it can feel as though being the future of midwifery brings a lot of pressure, it also gives us opportunities to learn, ask questions and challenge.
Students aren’t the only things that have grown over the last semester though. We have seen ‘bumps’ grow and in turn families grow too. It is a true privilege to be a part of and something which never ceases to amaze. Personally, I like to think that not only do student midwives and midwives help women and families to grow, they help us to grow too. So I hope that you have all had successes this semester and tried to embrace your downfalls. The journey we are all on is one long learning curve and the support we can give to each other is not to be underestimated. For now, it is time to relax, reflect and look forward to the next semester.