Leaving York hospital bleary eyed after a night shift on labour ward. I dig my key out of my pocket and unlock my frosty bike from the staff courtyard where it has been for the last 12 hours, I begin my short ride through a sleepy York. I pass workers beginning their new days, I negotiate around a delivery man unloading some sound equipment into a hotel. There is something satisfying about watching people start their days when you have finished your working hours during the night. I continue towards the historic shambles underneath the shadow of the Minster, there are no tourists yet and I have it all to myself. The cobblestones wake me up as I start to flag, I pass a woman on the doorstep of a shop drinking her morning coffee.
Across town and along the river towards the millennium bridge, I can see the blue lights from the bridge reflecting onto the water ahead. The sun is attempting to appear, I think of my bed beckoning me, I hope for rain I hate being in bed on bright days. I pass a man pushing a pram across the bridge, he smiles at me. The water gives me a flash back to a few hours before, sitting at the side of a pool quietly supporting a woman to birth her baby, whilst my mentor quietly supported me in learning the art of midwifery. I smile inwardly at the memory, what an amazing start to a new day.
Over the bridge and to Fulford, past the poppies in the field, I have been passing these poppies for the last few months whilst travelling to placement. Red flashes in the grass. Sometimes I stop to take photographs, it depends on how tired I am. Today I do, the sun is coming up over the fields and I need to capture some more images for the Lino print I’m creating. It’s early November and it feels fitting. I will use one for my profile picture on Remembrance Day, a small gesture but a gesture nonetheless.
My front door, I’m really tired now. I think of the mum and baby I’ve just left on the post natal ward, hopefully they will get some sleep today. That little girl unbeknown to her was my baby number 10. The 10th baby I’ve been the first one to handle and lift up to their mum. I walk into the house I can’t take my coat off as I still have the school run to do. My youngest daughter greets me by asking for cereal, she asks me what I have been doing in the night whilst she has been sleeping. I smile, I’m going to be a midwife.