Our "March of Inspiring Mums" interview series celebrates women who are doing some amazing things, whether through business, a campaign or just being fabulous! - hope you enjoy the "March of Inspiring Mums" series!
Our latest interviewee is Rosanna Gilderthorp, mum to 2 small children (2 1/2 years and 9 months old). She lives in Plymouth with her family.
After suffering anxiety and being "terrified" when she found out she was pregnant she decided to try hypnobirthing which she says transformed her experience and outlook. She also noticed that so many other new mums she met, hadn't had this experience and felt a sense of shame in their birth experiences...Rosanna decided to use her background as a Clinical Psychologist to help other mums overcome birth trauma and prepare for the positive second births that they deserve.
Today she shares some top tips and shares which colour makes her feel like a Cadbury's Twirl!
Tell me a little about yourself and how you got into the job you’re now doing?
Until I had my daughter in 2016 I was a Clinical Psychologist working in the NHS. When I found out I was pregnant I was terrified. I’ve been frightened of hospitals since a nasty incident when I was a child and it has been known for me to get up and run away when I have to be the patient. I knew from my job that hypnosis could be really powerful for helping people overcome anxiety so I nervously booked myself a hypnobirthing course. It transformed my life. I found myself excited about my birth and I can honestly say I enjoyed the whole thing. Best of all I came out of it with more confidence and belief in my own strength than I have ever had.
Unfortunately many of my mum friends had completely opposite experiences of birth, coming out of them feeling violated, anxious and that they had “failed” in some way. The first time I sat next to a mum over coffee and saw the shame and fear in her eyes when she talked about her birth I knew I needed to help her. I knew from my clinical experience that she was experiencing PTSD and thankfully that there are some really successful therapies available for it. Mind, Body and Baby, my private practice offering trauma therapy for new mums was born.
I also felt passionately however that prevention is better than cure. We are rarely traumatised by what we understand so I trained as a hypnobirthing teacher with the aim of empowering women through knowledge. Hypnobirthing provides women and their partners with a complete understanding of their bodies and the birth process so that nothing that happens during birth comes as a surprise. Couples learn how to work with the body and mind to have the most comfortable, relaxed experience of birth possible. It is so rewarding watching nervous couples transform into confident and excited birthing teams and even more rewarding when I get to meet their beautiful hypnobabies!
I now provide both therapy and hypnobirthing online as well as in person so I can help even more families.
Tell me one interesting fact about you?
I used to be in the territorial army as a soldier. I loved it but people always seem to be surprised when I tell them!
Please can you share 3 tips for managing the juggle of motherhood, life and business?
- Be “good enough” - do not strive for perfection. If you love your kids and think about their wellbeing you are probably doing enough. If in doubt think “will I remember this in ten years?” if the answer is “no” it probably isn’t worth obsessing over.
- Switch off social if it is hurting you - when we have recently given birth our brains are very prone to “comparisonitis”. If looking at someone else’s “perfect” mothering is making you feel bad get rid of instagram for a day. Sometimes we let our phones have too much power over us!
- Eat what makes you feel good. Sometimes that will be cake, sometimes that will be quinoa. I’m a big believer in mindfulness and that means being in tune with what your body and mind need right now. Sometimes I need a pop tart so I have it (love them). Other times I need something that is going to give me energy for a full afternoon at soft play so I reach for a healthier option. I try to only set goals (food or otherwise) that make me feel good.
What’s the best piece of advice you could give a new mum?
You are the world to your baby so look after yourself the best you can and don’t judge yourself more harshly than you would a friend.
Colour can make a real difference to our mood - what’s your favourite colour? And how does it make you feel when you wear it?
Purple. Sophisticated and enigmatic. A bit like a Cadbury’s twirl...
What’s your favourite activity to do with your children?
Taking my daughter to the trampoline park and watching the sheer joy when she realises the floor is bouncy. She starts laughing, which then makes her little brother laugh. Absolute gold.
What do you like to do for some me-time?
Writing my blog. I’ve always been a geek but writing my blog feels like I’m talking to a whole internet of other mums about stuff that matters to me. I can’t think of any better release than that.
Rosanna, your story is truly inspiring. Not only overcoming your fears but also setting out on a path to help other mums overcome theirs. This is something I can relate to after a difficult birth with my first child and being scared the second time round...your service truly is invaluable for any mums in a similar situation.
I also love your suggestion of doing what makes you feel good (something close to my heart with my free Facebook group The Feel Good Mums Hub) and whether that means cake or quinoa, eat, do and be mindful of what makes you happy!
Rosanna also has a FREE Facebook support group for second time mums that have had a difficult first birth...click here to join
If you've enjoyed this interview, make sure you check out our other "March of Inspiring Mums" series here
If you're an expectant Mum, and would like some time out to relax then take a look at our Mama to Be Box ...thoughtful items to help you enjoy pregnancy and make you feel good