Thoughts on our dear colleague Lorraine, Lorraine Andrews was an Assistant Professor in Midwifery in the School of Nursing and Midwifery, Trinity College Dublin from 2006 until her untimely death in 2013. Lorraine was also an alumna of the TCD School of Nursing and Midwifery, having completed her MSc in Midwifery in 2000.
Lorraine was loved by all of us; she was an outstanding woman, friend and colleague and we miss her dearly. This is a glimpse of the woman as we, her colleagues, knew her: “Lorraine’s wonderful sense of humour, coupled with her special teaching abilities were apparent immediately. It was a privilege for me to have been a part of Lorraine’s life. Her enthusiasm for whatever she was working on was infectious and so much a part of her success. Lorraine’s work on fatherhood will have a lasting contribution to midwifery knowledge and I was humbled to be part of her journey. However, my most abiding memory of Lorraine is how much I learned of her love for her family. They were never far from her thoughts. Often her eyes would fill with tears of joy as she recounted the many exciting stories from the children’s most recent adventures.”
“Lorraine embodied love and positivity, truly and genuinely caring for people in her life. Although our time together was too short, it was meaningful. Lorraine always left an impression with anyone she met, she had an inherent ability to read and understand people; she saw what lay beneath the surface. She was kind, compassionate and insightful but most of all she listened.”
Lorraine was generous with her time and her knowledge, and she supported each of us in her own selfless way. In the words of another colleague, Lorraine was “so very kind and thoughtful. Her own woman and so very strong. I miss her, I miss the swish of her layers of clothes. The beauty of her hair. The chuckle of her laugh. The sincerity of her facial expressions. I miss her teaching me and showing me how to be a working mother. I miss her writing, her big beautiful penmanship that was made for making To Do Lists and organising timetables and modules. I miss her love of highlighters and post-its. I miss the slow meals with her because so much had to be said and shared.”
Lorraine’s organisational skills knew no bounds, she colour-coded calendars, articles, files and folders and she had a special fondness for coloured ‘post-its’! She had a wonderful capacity to see only the best in others and she applied this to everyone she met; she had a beautiful smile and an easy laugh.
Lorraine was loved by students and was a role model for many. This is reflected in comments from one student: “Lorraine was always conscientious about our obligations to each other. Being supervised by Lorraine gave me all the support I needed to feel secure and confident in the task I was undertaking. As well as the academic buttress she provided, I really enjoyed her as a person and we had some great conversations, some of which have had a lasting impact on my life.”
For Lorraine, the children always came first, and her eyes would light up when she spoke of her own family and personal experiences of birth and motherhood. Her love of family was reflected in her teaching and the belief that mothers, babies and fathers deserve excellence in midwifery care.
Lorraine, a special, caring and much loved colleague, scholar, teacher and friend. You will be missed but never forgotten.