I returned to Port of Spain General Hospital today to complete my interview with Marcia Rollock. During this part of the interview, I asked questions that focused on the more personal side of Mrs. Rollock’s job. I was especially interested to learn about how she dealt with the emotional strains of helping a woman deliver. Mrs. Rollock opened up to me and told me about the first time she ever had complications during a birth, and about her first unsuccessful delivery. I became a bit apprehensive as I was introduced to these details of her life, but she assured me that, despite these negative details of her occupation, the joy at helping to deliver a new baby was always greater than the pain felt after losing one. We also spoke about being prepared to deliver at any time. Mrs. Rollock recalled with laughter at the time she had to conduct a home delivery at 2:00 in the morning and was so tired that she missed the street three times! All in all I have enjoyed speaking with Marcia, and I learned so much from her.
I was also able to speak with a nurse working at the hospital who was also attending the School of Midwifery. Emma Charles has been practicing nursing for 8 years now and after working on the maternity ward for 3 of those years, decided that she wanted to be one as well. Nurse Charles, along with two of her friends who are current practicing midwives, hope to open their own free clinic one day in their neighborhood of Laventille. Ms. Charles let me know that over the time she has been working on the maternity ward, assisting midwives and obstetricians, she has seen the number of mothers under the age of 18 increase drastically, and she hopes to assist these young ladies. She also wants to educate the upcoming generation and make contraception more available in her neighborhood to decrease the large number of young women getting pregnant. Ms. Charles told me about a program, made up of various nurses, midwives and obstetricians, that they have opened up in the hospital that actually teaches young, expecting mothers how to care for their children, creating a support system for these ladies. This program was Ms. Charles’ inspiration for wanting to open her own clinic, that will offer programs like this one to females that may not have access to the hospital.
I am especially excited for tomorrow, however, for I will be accompanying Ms. Charles to one of these classes, for women in their third trimester. It also saddens me to know that many of the girls in these classes are my age, some even younger than me. I cannot imagine having a baby now, and can only imagine what a time this must be for these girls out here. But it makes me happy to know that there are programs like the one in the hospital that prepare these girls for the road ahead of them, and let them know that they are not alone.
Every day that I am here I see something else amazing and life altering that these midwives do for their communities. I am completely in awe of the wonderful things they are doing to support and assist women during such an emotionally and physically difficult time in their lives, pregnancy and then childbirth. I have no doubts now, whatsoever, that this is definitely a career that I want to pursue!