Karen Wilmot: Expats Expecting

Today’s blog guest is Karen Wilmot who is a newbie in Club 100. Some of our other members will be reading about Karen here for the first time too. Here she is in her own words:

Karen WilmotMy name is Karen Wilmot (Elf name Cookie Peppermint) and I Am.  I am also a midwife, a yoga instructor, a hypnotherapist and a singer, amongst other things.

My business is called Pregnant in Oman which is ironic considering that I am not a mother and have never been pregnant. I need to tell you that this caused me years of anguish. How could anybody place their faith and trust in someone who has never experienced any of the things I teach and practice with such fervor and passion? It was so acute during my 30’s that I left several times to pursue other careers, always in the field of women’s health, but as far away from bellies and babies as I could get.

It was while sitting at my father’s bed side, in my final days with him, that I reached my turning point. The Oncologist came in to give us the latest update on Dad’s condition. He did it in such an empathic and yet professional way that I found myself thinking that he must have had cancer himself at some stage. Of course he hadn’t, I asked him just to be sure, but he went on to tell me that years of working with it had given him a depth of objective understanding that goes beyond the need to experience it subjectively. And so I went back to doing what I know and love.

I founded Pregnant in Oman in 2009 because of two things.

Personally, I knew that I could not continue returning to do work that I loved, but in a way that restricted me on every level. My inner rebel was in full revolt. Wearing a uniform, clocking in and out of exhausting 12 hour shifts to name a few.

Professionally, I was not growing but most disturbing was acknowledging that I was following procedures and protocols that did not honor or respect the women they were written to supposedly protect. The word Midwife means to be “with women” but I knew that as long as I stayed I was “with hospital” and, in staying, I was going against what I believed and knew to be true of my profession. I had to find another way to guide, support and protect women.

I also heard that voice in my ear thing that so many people talk about and that is generally laughed off as imagination. But I heard it and it was loud and clear, and I listened and unexpected things started happening, so I kept going. I had no idea where, what or how, but I just kept going. In moments of doubt (and there are many) I go back to that moment.

My big, bold, bodacious mission is to empower women with a sense of self-worth strong enough to overcome the fear that surrounds birth and the restrictions this places on the potential for personal growth.*

I love the freedom of working for myself. I love that I wear what I like, I set my own hours, and I take holidays when I want for as long as I want. I steer my ship.

My biggest surprise is that I am successful. I have started many projects/businesses in the past and none have succeeded to the point of being recognized or sustainable.

The first time that I was able to take a 6 week holiday in South America completely and totally paid for by my work and my efforts was a huge success milestone for me.

For the first few months of working for myself I would get really excited towards the end of the month and payday. I was horrified that in order to draw money I had to put it in there. Horrified. I started off doing everything for free. I would do a home visit with a new mom and she would give me a cup of tea and a cookie. Because we had not discussed my fee and I was too embarrassed to ask, I would leave with a full belly but an empty wallet. My landlady was not so accommodating.

My biggest lessons were, and still are, about money, systems and time management

The thing I’m most looking forward to is being able to offer my services virtually. There are so many amazing benefits to this both personally and professionally.

  • My message gets out to more people without impacting the time I spend delivering it.
  • My income potential increases exponentially.
  • I can live anywhere. Anywhere I like. (dam, I love this one so much)
  • I can spend more time doing the things I love and that nurture me.
  • I will grow spiritually and my message will be even more powerful.

Pregnant in Oman is my virtual starting block. The lesson has been that if I can do this in a foreign country, against all odds (this is another story altogether but relevant nevertheless) what else can I do?

The gun has gone off and Step 2 is ExpatsExpecting.com an online site offering expats around the globe a multimedia learning portal and virtual personal assistant on their journey of being pregnant and giving birth abroad.

*I have no idea where that came from, I have never thought of it like that before, but I like it. Woo Woo.

Karen’s new website will be live by September 2014. Meanwhile you can…

Like her on Facebook: Facebook.com/PregnantinOman

And follow Karen on Twitter: @MuscatMidwife

If you’d also like to be a newbie in Club 100, then take a leaf out of Karen’s book and snaffle your seat at the lifetime price of £100 per month so long as you join during August 2014. Prices go up to £150 from 1st September. Swell our ranks.

 

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