Thursday, 30 October 2008

Before I was a Mum

Kathy, over at 1o Minute Writer, sent me an interesting e-mail earlier this week, asking what I did before I was a mum. Replying to her set me thinking of all the different stuff I did before, and in fact since, motherhood.
I am a Physics Graduate, something I often keep quite quiet about. I remember at 13 insisting that I wouldn't do Physics O Level, but then it seemed, for all sorts of reasons, the most sensible choice. Similarly with A Level, which I loved and this led to my choice of degree. At the end of University, teaching seemed the most obvious choice, so I did my Teaching Certificate and took my first teaching job. This was not dissimilar to the Christians of Roman times being thrown before the lions! However, I survived my first year, coped with my second and was fed up of the school by the third. Then I saw a part-time teaching post in a Sixth Form College (16-18) advertised int he teaching press. Everyone I knew was very surprised at the idea of me working part-time, I didn't have children after all, but I did have a life and I had decided to enjoy it. While I wasn't teaching I ran and I did the London Marathon in April 1997. I also did a short course Triathlon and trained as a fitness instructor and this led to taking on another part time job at a local gym.
This was fun for a while, but after a year I was begining to get itchy feet again. I had regained my sanity and wanted a more challenging job. I wrote to the National Physical Laboratory and asked if they would like to employ me, and they did. So my next label was Research Scientist and I discovered the world of Microwave Antennae. Six months into this job I fell pregnant.
My boss was not keen on the idea of me returning part time and I was glad to leave and be a full time mother.
After my second child was born, I began training as a Breastfeeding Counsellor and qualified three years ago. I have been leading antenatal breastfeeding classes, counselling mums on the telephone and occasionally leading a drop-in clinic at the local hospital. In the last few years I have taken breadmaking courses and storytelling courses and dabbled in these.
For most of my life I would have flatly denied being creative. "Oh no," I would have said, "I am a science person." But this year, largely inspired by "The Artists Way", I have begun to change that view of myself, which has led to me beginning this blog back in June and to, even in recent days, discovering my poetry writing self. I am now considering taking and Open University course in Fiction Writing next spring.
Who knows where I'll be off to next!


Anonymous said...

What an interesting trajectory. Thanks for sharing that with us. When I went on that women's retreat with women from my church, there was a workshop on poetry that included reading favourite poetry and writing some. Their poems were then included in the closing liturgy. Very inspiring. Now they have set up a poetry group that meets regularly at our church.

I mention this because it might be that there are others in your church who are also discovering creativity and would be interested in sharing these gifts in a small group.

Gaynor said...

Now that's a great idea and one I will explore - thanks! Do you ever right poetry?