I've known Jane over 6 years now. She was my midwife and the lady that saved our son's life!
At 30 weeks pregnant Jane had popped in to do her usual anti-natal check on the way home. I had been diagnosed with Symphesis Pubis Dysfunction and was basically bound to the sofa because of it. Jane and I live in the village so it made sense for her to make me her last call of the day on her way home.
She left having phoned her son Joe to run her a bath having had a bad day at work but within 30 minutes I was on the phone to her sobbing because I'd had a show and 'I didn't feel right'. She battled with the hospital because I'd had previous problems with pregnancy and they finally agreed to take me in to check me over. They monitored me, injected with hormones, made me as comfortable as possible and kept me in for the night for observation.
The next afternoon at 14:30 our son Benjamin Harold was born 10 weeks premature and weighing in at 3lb 11ozs. I can't begin to tell you how frightened we were but I also can't begin to tell you how grateful I was and still am to Jane. She kept me calm and told me everything was going to be OK - she was right. We now have a beautiful 5 year old that I seriously believe would not be with us today if it hadn't have been for her.
She puts her life and soul into her midwifery and everyone is her family as her poor partner Rachel finds out everytime they nip into the local supermarket when it takes them 2 hours just to buy a pint of milk.
Jane has always supported me in whatever event I've been doing with words of encouragement and telling me how proud and inspired she is of me, putting her hand in her pocket and sponsoring me for every run, walk, jog or mountain climb I did.
Jane also sponsored Andy for his Challenge66 event and I remember her saying she always liked to sponsor people because she never did events herself so it was her way on contributing - how times have changed! She has done not one but 2 Race for Life's this year and raised a staggering £551.00 for cancer research. An amazing feat for someone who does nothing!!
Jane and I went out for a couple of walks together with Willow and Finlay, our respective dogs and when the email went around regarding the Moonwalk, Jane told me she might do it and would go home and think about it - that was a BIG MISTAKE JANE, HUGE!! By saying you would "think" about it you set ME the challenge of wanting you to say yes and I didn't have to wait too long at all.
All of a sudden she was enjoying herself and walking further that she had ever walked. Jane says I am her mentor - personally I still find it hard to hear people saying that but if I can pay her back for the way she helped me all of those years ago then it is my honour. The fact that we now also have a wonderful friendship to go with it is an added bonus.
When we go out walking, Jane really is our Mary Poppins, our David Bellamy or even our Dr Doolittle. She has saved frogs from the jaws of death (well car tyres anyway). She could tell you every bird in the Sproatley countryside, she can count rabbits quicker than I can count my calories and she is a Deer Hunter Extrordinaire (real or statue!). Jane even finds fairy slippers in nettle flowers. (I for one can actually see the slippers in the flowers and think of them everytime I watch Tinkerbell).
Like myself, Jane lost her Dad and talks or both him and her Mum when we are out. She has picked up her Dads wonderful love for animals and nature which she passes on to us all, or anyone that will listen and not think she has had far too much sun, or wine!!
It is my pleasure to have you as a walking partner Jane and look forward to downing many bottles of wine along the way, well we have earned them after all!!
Now who's next......................