About me and Mumaroo
Hi! I'm Korrin owner and founder of mumaroo! I dont really do talking about myself - i think most of us find this quite a difficult thing to do in life don't we?! but equally i think if you've found your way to my website you have either already met me, have been recommended to come see me or maybe you've just stumbled across this and want to know more. either way it always helps to know a bit about the person behind the screen doesn't it?
So a bit about me...
when i left school i met my husband working in a bar job - if you're local to mumaroo you will be familiar with pleasure island theme park and this is where we met so i have very sentimental memories of this part of cleethorpes (where hq is located today) . i had never really known what i wanted to do after college so i took a job in a local bank which i intended to be very temporary whilst i decided what career or university choice i was going to make.
i started off being the 'meet and greet' girl saying hello to every customer when they walked through the door with a big smile on my face and realised that actually - i quite liked banking! so i worked my way up quite quickly and within a few years was working at managerial level across linolnshire. this was a fairly male dominiated world and certainly wasn't something a girl like me built careers in so having children was quite far from my mind and i was very driven... in fact i used to squirm and find it difficult if a client came in with their own children. i didn't get it... i didn't understand kids and i didnt feel like i had a maternal bone in my body!
so when joe proposed and we got married in 2010 we had a discussion about children and i said ok.... still not really feeling that maternal if i'm totally honest! i fell pregnant quickly - in fact i was pregnant on our wedding day and i breezed through the pregnancy not really taking any time to consider the fact i was about to become a parent. i didn't research anyhting, didn't think about parenting styles or feeding methods or birth choices. not one thing! infact the only thing i really remember considering in detail was if i could find a changing bag that looked like my treasured black patent handbag!!
so fast forward to my daughter being born and the birth didn't go great - i wont go into massive detail here but looking back i know now that i was traumatised from the experience. however; one thing that did hit me was the intense love i felt immediately for my daughter - the need to be with her and keep her safe overwhelmed me. to a level that actually i realise wasn't in itself healthy (i talk about post natal anxiety and intrusive thoughts a fair bit on my blog and social media channels) when she was born my sister came to visit me in hospital and she handed me a stretchy wrap - telling me she had done the online research for me and this was the best kind of carrier to use. great! i thought - but the reality was i didn't have a clue how to use it and my anxiety was clouding my ability to learn. i tried a few times, it felt wrong and unsafe, i spoke to midwives and health visitors who told me they didn't have any training to show me. so i gave up! there's a few photos of me using a carrier i found in tescos but it really hurt! and as she got older my husband used one of the large framed hiking carriers for her but if i tried it i felt like i was in the army and about to fall over - so ultimately i declared babywearing wasnt for me, it hurt and it wasnt fun.
alongside babywearing there were other aspects of learning to become a mother that took me by surprise was the conflict i felt with the way in which my gut instinct was telling me to raise her and what all the media was telling me parents should be doing.
i remember sitting on the stairs, listening to her cry and texting my husband saying "i feel bad but the books and programs say i have to do this or else she will never learn to go to sleep" and very luckily what i did at the same time was a posted in a small online mums group asking who else was at this stage and a wonderful lady popped up and said "go to your baby! cuddle her, that feeling you're feeling is your mummy instincts. listen to them!!" and oh my goodness what a life changing moment that one sentence from one lady id never met before was! a complete eye opener - no one had ever said this to me. i had never been given confidence to listen to my own instincts and it paved the way to how i mothered from that moment.
so a couple of years later i had my son. this time id researched birth and choices much better and had a overall better experience so i decided to give babywaeeing a go again.. i asked again for help but still there was no one locally who could help me professionally.
at this time it was after the banking crisis and whilst on maternity i was offered to take voluntary redundancy so i decided to take the leap and found the school of babywearing. i went off to do my babywearing consultancy training but to be honest - it was for me. to learn propeprly. i never intended to make it into what mumaroo is today. once i'd done my training i put out a little advert asking if any other parents needed any support using slings or carriers and i was pretty inundated with requests immediately! so my little suitcase of 5 slings wasn't enough and i spent the next few years expanding that and going from five slings in a suitcase to a van full of hundreds of slings and travelling all over lincolnshire hosting sling libraries with my lovely team of volunteers.
something unexpected happened as i started running these sessions more regularly - i wasn't just talking to parents about slings! we would find that 20% of sling library sessions was sling fitting and 80% was emotional support, listening to parents, listening to concerns and worries and supporting. so we built up a wonderful supportive community of parents both online and offline and goodness me it felt like it was so needed!
in 2015 i had my third child vera, and even for myself my motherhood journey with her was so much better having our supportive community around us.
i always knew i wanted mumaroo to have its own space - it was important to me that we had a community hub where parents could come not just for slings or libraries but for so many other things! play groups and baby massage , yoga, activites etc so when the opportunity arose in 2019 for me to take on the mumaroo hq unit in cleethorpes i decided to go for it! unfortunately covid arriving in early 2020 meant that a lot of these plans had to be put on hold but the space is still very much there and available when it is safe to continue group activities. its a great space! i'm very proud of it. its been completely designed with families in mind, from tables that are higher up on the wall so your hot cups of tea are out of little hands reach to a large family changing area with supplies if you forget anything!
as mumaroo grew i found myself receiving more and more messages from parents asking for support regarding their child's sleep or behaviour. it became apparent that there really wasn't anywhere to turn locally that would provide support and knowledge without fear of judgements. i thought back to those days of me sitting on the stairs knowing i wanted to pick up my baby but fearing i was doing something wrong and having no where to turn to.
so i searched around and found the calm family training. calm family was everything i wanted to be able to provide for families - evidence based and putting your families first. the training wasn't about telling parents what to do - it was about giving them the tools and the knowledge to make their own decisions on how they parent their children. it fit with the mumaroo ethos perfectly and i'm so excited to be able to bring this additional support to families in our area.