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Starting over as a 31 year old Mom?

2 replies

Pennypops12 · 15/01/2023 20:08

I will try and be as brief as possible but this may be long!
I'm thinking of starting over and following my dream and training to become a midwife.
I have had a 10 year successful career in sales. I have earned highly and hit every goal I have set myself. The logical next step would be management, which I have rejected some nudges on a few occasions as I don't have the correct temperament to manage a team.
Before I went on maternity, I was in a commission based role. Whilst I was away the company underwent a restructure due to a bit of "scandal" if you like, the commercial team suffered greatly and were switched to a more engagement based team. With this, the pay was changed leaving me earning about 50% of what I was pre maternity, so with moving to part time it's been reduced to 25% and I'm doing something I hate which is basically just meeting people (virtually) and sucking up to them. The perks are that even at 25% I am still incredibly well paid for what I do, and they are extremely flexible around me being a working Mom.
It seems now that the "restructure" has all been a way to remove commission payments, and they're now trying to reintroduce a target but not pay commission, so essentially I'll be doing my old job but for 25% of what I was previously paid. I don't want this, it was worth the stress for my previous wage but it's not for what I get paid now.
So moving on to my actual topic. I have always wanted to be a midwife, I have a supportive partner who already pays the bills, but I hate that. I have always paid half and since my wages were cut I find it a real dent to my pride to not be able to contribute. Also, I have no idea about things like managing childcare, I hope to have another within the next 3 years, would I be stupid to start now? Would it be better to wait until after the next one (if we are lucky enough) before embarking on this life changing decision? Can studies be paused?
If anyone has any input or has done anything similar I would appreciate any insight you can give me!
Thank you so much in advance!

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swanling · 16/01/2023 09:33

How far have you got into your research? What do you mean when you say you have "no idea about managing childcare"? In relation to something specific like placement shifts or just generally?

It might be worth reporting your thread and asking MN to change your thread title so it's clearer you specifically want advice on retraining as a midwife - more people will find your thread that way.

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LG93 · 16/01/2023 13:41

I'm a year younger but a child and a few years down the line ahead of you - although child nursing rather than midwifery.

To answer your questions, yes you can pause your studies for maternity leave (lots do) but you won't get funding for that, and depending on how far in you were you may not have worked recently enough for maternity allowance so something to consider. I made the decision to wait until I was done having children for that reason, so will start in September when youngest is 18 months and oldest is starting school.

Childcare is a huge hurdle, both for uni days and placements. you'll likely be expected to do long/days nights on placement blocks so consider how you'll manage this and discuss up front with anyone you're intending to rely on what will be expected - for example we will use wrap around care at school for my eldest and have chosen a nursery with an early drop off (7am) for youngest so that if needed DH can drop off both before he starts work at 8, and he is able to flex hours to pop out and pick up eldest after school and youngest doesn't need collecting unt 6 so he would be finished by then. My mum has agreed to be emergency stand in care/pick up as needed but was upfront that she didn't want to be a first port of call/weekly occurrence which was a helpful chat to have got out the way to avoid any bad feeling or resentment down the line. Also keep in mind if you're relying on tax free childcare/free funded hours you aren't eligible for this as a student unless you're also earning the equivalent of 16hrs a week at NMW so something to consider in terms of finances as well.

The other thing to consider is entry requirements, midwifery is very competitive and a lot of courses will have 'prior study' requirements for mature students and require you to demonstrate study in the last 5 years of some variation. If you already meet the criteria for entry you could look at short courses, I did 3 free level 2 VRQs to help support my application (infection prevention and control, handling meds in healthcare settings and mental health in young people) which also helped demonstrate my interest, gave me something to talk about at interview and gave me something to do with my time while waiting to be able to apply! If you don't meet the criteria you could look at access courses to do while you're working.

Good luck! There are plenty of Facebook groups for student nurses/midwives that you may be interested to join, I found them helpful to see what other hiccups others have come across to help troubleshoot ahead of time!

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