A few weeks ago, I coined the term – VirtualMamahood, not realising that a few weeks later, I would be launching this service.
I was embarking on my Churchill Fellowship, travelling to The USA for 37 days to research trauma-informed approaches to care.
I’m a single parent with a great support network. So, I needed to rely on my network of family and friends to meet my teenage son’s needs. But I could not delegate being a mum. That meant for 37 days I would be a virtual mum. That began the use of the hashtag #VirtualMamahood
In order to enjoy my time away and fulfil my son’s needs, we both had to rely on technology in all its forms. It required a lot of planning, as I was travelling across several time zones.
In order to ensure we had a chat before school, I would set an alarm, wake up and get involved with his morning routine and even walk with him to school as he showed me using the camera on his phone what the sights he was seeing. I felt like I was walking with him to school, something I did not have the chance to do whilst at home as I’d usually be journeying to work too, and was often underground.
I did the same too! I would have loved my son to go sightseeing with me as I travelled. But he was miles away! So, I did the next best thing! I planned my sightseeing around his schedule and would video chat with him during my travels.
I still remember the delight on his face as I cruised on San Francisco Bay, went across The Golden Gate Bridge on an open top bus at noon and The Bay Bridge at night. It was as if he was next to me! He was so excited!
Then a few days after returning from the USA, I took ill with symptoms of COVID19. I wasn’t surprised! I’m in the high-risk group for contracting COVID19. Yet, I was travelling in the very crowded Underground, a few days after returning to the UK, just to deliver care.
The period that I was ill was challenging! I didn’t feel physically well, but managing my thoughts and feelings was much harder. As I got better, guilt started to set in. I can’t even care for those that I am meant to serve, yet I have all this expertise!
Not being able to deliver face to face care to my clients, on my sick bed, I developed the idea – “Ruth, you’re still a nurse, midwife and health visitor. Many women need your professional support and advice. Why not create a virtual platform where you can support pregnant women and mums that need you?”
Aha! The conception of Virtual Mamahood! Now, I’m birthing it!
An online forum to support pregnancy and motherhood.
I’ve learned how to be a Virtual Mama. Now let me support you virtually through your mamahood journey with my 26-year expertise of nursing, midwifery and health visiting and 16 years of mamahood.
Yes, my son is only 15! That’s because I believe Mamahood begins in the womb!
So what can you expect from the journey?
What am I bringing to the party?
Looking forward to connecting with you online