Sally Haldane, Midwife

I qualified as a midwife in 2004 and prior to that worked briefly as a nurse. During my time as a midwife I worked in two large hospitals in Cardiff and London and then started working in Edinburgh at the end of 2007.

During my career in Edinburgh I worked in all hospital areas of the maternity unit and I was part of the core staff when the midwife-led Lothian Birth Centre opened in 2011. I feel very passionately about facilitating normal birth as far as possible and supporting women, both high risk and low risk, to achieve their most positive birth outcomes, by using massage, aromatherapy, encouraging mobility during labour, hypnobirthing techniques and waterbirth.

Another strong passion I have is Breastfeeding and I have always regarded this as a huge and very important part of my job when working with women antenatally and in the immediate postnatal period and weeks following. In Cardiff I worked with a specialist community team, who provided care for a vulnerable group of pregnant mums. Supporting them throughout their pregnancy and labour meant that we had both very high rates of normal deliveries and breast feeding rates, which was hugely rewarding as a midwife and obviously great news for mum and baby. It showed us that preparation in the antenatal period and then on hand support postnatally, really does give mums and babies the best start that they need.

In Edinburgh, working in all areas of the maternity unit, has given me lots of different experience with breastfeeding. For example, antenatally, teaching women the art of hand expressing to help in the early days after their birth; postnatally, supporting women with babies in the neonatal unit; facilitating uninterrupted skin-skin when babies are first born and obviously the daily and nightly support to new mums and babies who are keen to get home and breastfeed successfully in their own environments.

I have also breastfed both of my children up to the age of 2, which has given me a big insight into the challenges of breastfeeding but also the joys and the amazing bond that comes with it.

Due to family life with 2 small children, I have now stopped working as a midwife in the hospital, and have been working with Knotstressed for over 3 years providing antenatal and breastfeeding support in group sessions and on a 1:1 basis. It is a real pleasure and privilege to continue working with and supporting pregnant women whilst they prepare for birth, breastfeeding and the transition to motherhood and I love using my many years of experience to help.