Little Evie doesn’t know it yet, but in years to come she will realise she couldn’t be in safer parenting hands than what she is now.
For starters, Dan Ross-Hopkins and Amy Callister, both aged 30, pass the test – both figuratively and literally – when it comes to showing a high level of care. Dan is an Intensive Care Paramedic in Bankstown, while Amy is an Extended Care Paramedic based at Point Clare Station.
After meeting at Liverpool Station a few years ago, the couple fell in love before going on to give birth to Evie a couple of months ago.
Given the challenges COVID-19 has presented to our service over the past 12 months, it’s stories like the birth of Evie that bring some much needed joy to not only her paramedic parents, but also the colleagues they work alongside at their respective stations.
And while both Dan and Amy won’t go out of their way to steer Evie towards a career in paramedicine when she is older, there is already a good example – beyond the roles of both her parents – as to why becoming an ambo might already be in Evie’s DNA.
“Two weeks before Evie’s birth, Amy’s sister, Emma, was due to have her child,” Dan said.
“But ahead of that time, Emma was dropping her other kids off at our place one day before she then got in her car and her water broke five minutes later. Realising she was wasn’t going to make the 30-minute drive to Gosford Hospital, she returned to our place, knocked on the door and before we knew it, myself and Amy were delivering our nephew (Nalu).
“Amy was obviously very pregnant at the time, and because of that you could say Evie assisted with the delivery…. a student observer.”
Then, a few weeks later, it was Amy’s turn. For the first-time mum, giving birth gave her a newfound respect on how exhausting the process can be – particularly given Amy was in labour for 48 hours. “It was hell,” she laughed.
“I’ve helped patients give birth five times before, but I never fully appreciated what those mums were going through at the time. I definitely have a new level of appreciation for them now, that’s for sure.”
As parents, both Dan and Amy acknowledge they have brought different qualities to parenthood – which extend beyond their medical expertise.
“I’m probably more on edge than Amy is,” Dan said.
“I actually think part of that is because immediately before Amy went into labour I had been debriefing a job involving a paediatric arrest. I was pretty wound up on the way to the Amy’s birth and I think that job has left me pretty hyper-alert with Evie.
“The good thing about Amy is she is a very calm person – probably the most relaxed person on the planet.”
Needless to say, Amy is also still very alert and attentive to her new bub when something doesn’t appear to be the norm with her.
“Another thing I have a newfound appreciation for, as a new mum, is when I’ve gone to jobs and mothers of newborns have appeared overly concerned about something that turns out to be nothing,” she said.
“I certainly have a better understanding of having that feeling with my own child now.” Asked how Evie was doing – at the tender age of two and-a-half months – Amy said: “She’s doing well, but she can be a bit of a grumpy child.”
“I can’t complain though, because she sleeps really well at night… often 7pm to 7am.”