On October 10th this year I spent a very pleasant day with mums who were currently suffering from postnatal illness and some health professionals. Earlier this year a lady called Merna Carruthers, a Community Engagement Co-ordinator based at the impressive Kirkby Community Primary Care Centre near Mansfield, contacted me after she had received an email about the work I do.
She secured the funding and we pressed on with our 'You are not alone' programme.
At the end of the day the ladies asked if I could return to see how they had got on.
For the penultimate talk of this year I was THRILLED to see the progress they had made. Unlike the first session when they had arrived with heads down and reluctance to speak or give eye contact .. today they almost bounced in!!! What a transformation! Very well done girls. It seems the biggest improvements they had made since I spoke to them was:-
1. Feeling that they were not alone - in fact, two have become best friends! They are all offering one another support which they can both give and receive.
2. Hope that they will get much better.
3. Much less concerned about what other people say about them.
4. Have a more positive outlook.
5. Being kinder to themselves.
6. Feeling so much better in general and enjoying life more.
We reviewed what changes had taken place since we last met and discussed any remaining challenges. The wonderful aspect I found was that they now all were happy to suggest ways of progress to one another.
We enjoyed some homemade biscuits (thank you Merna) and other goodies which they brought along.
They all left with individual goals but one they all now share is the desire to help others as they have been helped. Brilliant!
A huge thank you to Merna for having the determination to helps ladies in her area; to the budget provider ... and to the ladies who have 'shared' their illness and feelings with others and in doing so have helped themselves!
I am so proud of you and am totally humbled by you all.
Let's hope there will be many others we can reach out to.