INSPIRING MUMMIES - Melbourne yummy mummy Dr. Gordana Ukalovic -Cato + life as a new mum
WE TALK WITH DR. GORDANA UKALOVIC-CATO ON LIFE AS A NEW MUM + WORK
We all know it so well, the desire to become a mum, the desire to achieve in our career's and the hope that we inspire our children to be the best possible being they can be whilst finding their passion and following their dreams.
Gordana is one of those mums who inspire us and reminds us to reach beyond our abilities and push through the hard times to build a life we want our children to be a part of....in hope that some day they are in turn inspired to push themselves to achieve a life they dream of.
We spoke with Grodana on life, motherhood and work.
Tell us a little about yourself pre+post mumma life?
Pre mum I was working full time towards specialising in my chosen field of medicine, leading a busy life juggling work and family with the added pressure of constant exams. Since having my first child Olivia, I decided to extend my maternity leave to ten months and find my life at present involves attending to a little person that needs me 24/7.
This new role is very different as my needs are truly trumped by my daughters, cats and husbands. Though I must add it's very rewarding watching Olivia grow and become her own little person.
Was it a difficult decision to start a family with such an intensive career path?
The decision to start a family wasn't difficult as I always knew children were part of my life plan. I figured work will always bet here but having a child is a privilege that I didn't want to leave too late and risk missing out on.
Did you enjoy being pregnant? What are your helpful secrets?
I was lucky enough to have a relatively normal pregnancy in terms of symptoms. It was great being pregnant but I did miss being able to fit into my clothes and being able to eat the foods that were off limits. I relied heavily on crackers to get me through the day and pressure stockings as I was on my feet for a majority of the day.
Birthing and hospitals, tell us what you would like to about the experience + what got you through?
Olivia was ten days overdue so I was induced and then progressed the next day to an emergency caesarean section. My trust in our obstetrician go me through as I quickly realised the "how" she was delivered was out of my control. What mattered most was her safety so I quickly let go of my preconceptions and literally went with the flow.
When Olivia was finally born what were your feelings as a now new mum?
When Olivia arrived I felt very detached from the experience as fatigue coupled with the emergency nature of the delivery left me dumbfounded. She was taken from me rather quickly so hubby got to spend a couple of hours bonding whilst I was in recovery. I remember knowing she existed whilst we were parted but reality was yet to sink in that I now had a daughter and I was a mother.
How are you finding life as a new mum?
The earlier days were tough. Being a shift worker for many years I assumed tending to an infant multiple times overnight would be easier for me as my body clock was used to it. Not so and I struggled to get through the days and nights at the beck and call of a hungry baby that seemed to need feeding every second of the day.
However the day you are rewarded with the first smile or a milestone make it all worth it. And it does get easier as time goes on though just when you think you have them sorted things change again to keep muma on her toes!
Your now thinking of number 2 + returning to work. Do you feel conflicted or pulled in any direction?
Number two will have to wait a year or two as I am waiting to finish my training program and to minimise the amount of disruption given that I am so close to finishing. My major concern is Olivia going to childcare whilst I return to work full time again in August. I know she will be fine as they are very adaptable it's mama that needs some TLC!
Tell me about your work and inspiration?
I work in a specialist field of medicine called anaesthetics. I am currently at the latter end of my training working towards becoming a consultant which takes 5 years of training on top of a few years of general training in hospital.
I love my job it is a privileged role with a lot of responsibility. My role entails seeing patients before their operation and answering any questions or worries they have before floating them off to sleep. I have always gravitated to roles with a practical aspect and anaesthetics provides the best of both worlds requiring sound clinical judgement and high level practical skills.
I can only hope Olivia sees what I have achieved and it gives her the inspiration to dream big as anything is possible if you are following your passion.