Celebrating International Year of the Nurse and Midwife, in honour of the 200th anniversary of Florence Nightingale's birth.
When you’re going through childbirth for the first time there are a lot of things you can expect from the experience. Finding your life’s true calling isn’t usually one of them. But that’s how Carly Bilson had her light-bulb moment to become a midwife.
“It was during the birth of my first child,” she said.
“She was delivered by two amazing midwives. I was studying physio at the time, and there was a medical student who was in the room who the midwives were asking questions about labour and birth.
“I joined in and was taking turns with the student answering their questions while I was in labour.”
From that day on her career path was clear. She enrolled in a Bachelor of Midwifery at Southern Cross University on the Gold Coast and the rest is history.
Carly has been part of the Mater Private Hospital Townsville team for seven years, having moved to Townsville from northern New South Wales looking for a sea change.
“Initially I started as a casual. The team were lovely and I ended up being offered a contract so I accepted and never looked back,” she said.
Carly says although midwifery can bring about many challenges, in the end it’s all worth it for the reward of seeing happy families with their new bundles of joy.
“I really love working with the families,” she said.
“I will always remember the day I had a family come in for their third baby and I had been present at the birth of the first two.
“I was lucky enough to catch the third baby. To be able to provide that kind of care to them throughout their journey was such a great feeling.
“It’s hard work but the friends and experiences - both good and bad – that you encounter on your journey in study and as a professional make it so worthwhile.”
Outside of the delivery room Carly’s biggest passion lies in music. She can often be found behind the piano and says if she hadn’t gone down the healthcare path, she might have ended up as a music teacher or musician.
“I really enjoy music. My partner and I write songs and I play piano and sing,” she said.
“A few of us Mater staff members that are musically inclined get together for the various religious occasions throughout the year and sing. It’s a fun little activity that ties my work with my hobby.”