What does it feel like to hold your 3000th baby? We find out from NCT’s Marie Coveney, an antenatal teacher based in Twickenham, Hounslow & District NCT branch who began facilitating NCT courses back in 1995.
Amongst others, Marie has taught NCT’s Parent Content Manager and NCT matters editor, Sanjima DeZoysa, who attended her course when expecting her daughter in 2010 and later her son in 2012.
In December 2017, Marie led a refresher course for parents expecting their second and third babies, who all arrived safely in early 2018.
As the last baby arrived, Marie reached the milestone of the 3,000th baby to be born to parents attending her classes. Ethan, a brother to Isla, arrived on 2 February to parents Kate and Stephen.
The course reunion in March marked a celebration for the whole group as they reflected on how far they had come from their bumps to babies.
One of the mums, Julia, told Marie: ‘Thank you for all your guidance during the course. It really helped not only during the birth and the early days, but also to mentally prepare myself beforehand. I don’t think I’d fully registered I was about to have my third baby until I started the NCT class!’
Marie was thrilled to have reached this landmark and to be holding baby Ethan. She reflected back on the many changes she has seen both within NCT and maternity services over the last 23 years. She said: ‘I’m still passionate about birth and supporting women in their choice of birth’.
Marie also facilitates Signature courses for first-time parents and waterbirth workshops mainly in the Twickenham and Richmond areas of South West London.
In the past, she has run courses in Clapham and Battersea, supported a Home Birth Group and run Continuing Professional Development study days for other NCT teachers up and down the UK.
Course attendees from past and present praised Marie’s knowledge and reassuring approach to the classes.
Hayley Rabbetts, who attended before the birth of her son Stanley in 2013, said: ‘Having my NCT classes with Marie made me stay more focused and relaxed towards the whole birth process, as my first pregnancy had been difficult. She also taught me that there were lots of options other than typical pain relief to get you through the birth.’
Another mum, Emily McKenzie, who met Marie before the birth of her daughter Madigan, said: ‘Marie was a great support to me as my NCT teacher and through the Home Birth Support Group. Through her advice and contacts in the community, I managed to have a home birth that was very positive for all our family – thank you, Marie!’