Inspired by the help she received from NCT breastfeeding peer supporters, Julia began working as a peer supporter herself. Read her story here and why she’s never looked back.
Seven years ago I found out I was expecting baby number two, and I instantly felt dread! I had an awful experience of breastfeeding my first baby because of tongue-tie. Now the memories came flooding back.
How would I be able to deal with the pain again? How would I cope with crying before every feed and the toe curling as baby latched on, all while looking after my then-to-be five year-old?
I was determined to find out all I could about the support available to me locally, and in my research I found NCT. I found out about the Baby Cafés I could attend if I needed and the lovely little army of peer supporters who were there, too.
Luckily when Milly was born, she didn’t have tongue-tie. Breastfeeding began much more smoothly for us.
During our stay in hospital after her birth, I was visited a few times by a breastfeeding peer supporter, who sat with me and talked through feeding and listened to how I felt.
She directed me to websites where I could find information and also invited me to go along to Baby Cafés to meet other mums who were breastfeeding.
The time to return to work loomed and I dreaded it
I’m so pleased I did visit the Baby Café, as I met some lovely mums who are now friends of mine. I also found out that NCT were going to be running peer support training.
When Milly was three months old, I began my journey as an NCT peer supporter and I haven’t ever looked back! Twelve weeks were spent learning and listening and having some time to be me, as well as ‘Mummy’. After finishing my training, I went on to volunteer in Honeyhill Baby Café in Peterborough and on the telephones for just over a year.
Then the time to return to work loomed and I dreaded it. I didn’t want to have to leave my baby and stop our wonderful days of being able to feed on demand. I dreaded every work shift and so did Milly. After three months of working, I decided that I couldn’t be a full-time mum and work as well so I handed my notice in.
I enjoyed six months of knowing I wasn’t having to work and being able to peer support as much as I wanted. Then my golden opportunity came.
NCT has given me a career, wonderful friendships and the skills I needed to breastfeed my daughter.
A job that I would love to do came up – being Team Leader for NCT breastfeeding peer supporters, working from home and around my little family. I was lucky to be offered the job and thoroughly enjoyed it.
From there, I have moved on to NCT Service Delivery Manager in Peterborough and Contracts Manager nationally.
I love every minute of my job. Even more, I love being able to still peer support and provide a service to mothers that I valued so greatly in the early days of being a mum to two children.
NCT has given me a career, many wonderful friendships and most importantly, the skills I needed to breastfeed my daughter for almost three years.
Julia and her colleagues won Best Team – Peterborough Branch, Peterborough Breastfeeding Service and Peterborough Birth and Beyond Community Support at the NCT Stars Awards 2019. She’s pictured with the winning team above.
For help and guidance with all aspects of feeding your baby, read our selection of articles here.