From a young age, Julie pondered what she would do with her life. A job as a nurse aide in the local Maternity Annexe at the age of sixteen gave her a love for being with women during labour and birth, and caring for mothers and their babies.
Life could not have been happier, married to the man she loved and the birth of a son. The tragic and unexpected death of her second baby in her first hour of life led to depression, loneliness and despair.
The true story tells of a woman’s struggle to overcome tragedy and who triumphs to become the midwife that she was born to be.
The many birth stories are told from an era in the 1970s through the eyes of a young nurse aide to modern day midwifery in New Zealand as an independent midwife with her own caseload.
Targeted Age Group:: Women
What Inspired You to Write Your Book?
As I had trauma in my life as in my second baby died at birth. I went through a lot and had a lot to overcome and I wanted to share my journey including my faith.
When did the dream start? When did the journey begin? My grandmother gave me a small Ladybird book as part of my birthday present when I was ten years old. Reading the life of Florence Nightingale, I decided that being a nurse was what I wanted to do when I grew up. Imagining that, like Florence, I would be able to heal the sick and bring hope to people with my care and compassion. I imagined tending the sick and dying in a war zone in some far off land.
I thought a lot in my childhood about what I would do in life. Along with wanting to become a nurse, I also wanted to be a circus performer, an air hostess, an Olympic swimmer and even an actress. One by one though, my dreams would come crashing down. In my circus phase, I put a hole through the bedroom wall doing somersaults off the bed. Dad was not impressed and I was severely reprimanded. My circus career ended before it began. In my swimming phase, I can remember nearly drowning at least a couple of times. Dad rescued me from the river at a Lions’ Christmas picnic. I was walking to the other side of the river with a friend, hand in hand. My friend, who I was walking with, was a lot taller than I was. So as we walked, I was going deeper under the water. Fortunately, Dad spotted us before my head completely disappeared. Then, again, on holiday in Rotorua, I jumped into the deep end of the swimming pool, still unable to swim. I remember all the hands coming down to grab me out of the pool as I kept coming up to the surface and then going down into the water again. I copped another scolding from Dad who was usually quiet, loving and sedate. He seemed rather stressed as he pulled me from the water, telling me to never jump in a pool again without finding out which was the deep end.
The nursing dream seemed to be the only one where I didn’t have my bubble burst and where no discouragement came to destroy it. So I carried my dream of becoming a nurse from the time I read the book until I wanted to leave school. My mother decided that working at the local hospital as a nurse aide was good enough and didn’t see any need for me to go away and do formal training.
She knew the matron of the local hospital and, while talking to her one day in town, my mother asked her if there was a vacancy for me as a nurse aide at the hospital. I had finished school at the end of the fifth form because I was bored and impatient to run my own life.
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