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!

2 comments:

JoVE 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?