The sofa that changed my life


The journey begins

Four years ago, my life was changed. I sat on a blue sofa. My mind was restless, my body tense due to waiting. Hundreds of questions flashed in my mind. Relaxing seemed to be impossible as I had the most important moment of my life ahead: the birth of my first-born.

Amidst the excitement, I was relieved by the soothing atmosphere of the waiting lobby. The sofa was soft, comfortable. Sitting felt comfortable. Back then, I couldn’t think the environment was designed for just that – to relieve tension and the feeling of sickness. The sofa was also designed to make sitting as easy as possible.

Back then in Kaari hospital I didn’t know that my life would change in another way; that I would build a strong memory trace associated with just that Tuma sofa. But let’s go back a little further in time, right to the beginning of the story.

Kaari hospital

We were impressed by the amazing facilities of the Kaari hospital, completed in 2015, already on the first visit when we went for the ultrasound scan. I remember the brightness of the spaces in particular. This didn’t even seem like a hospital!

We rested for a while before the examination on the sofas in the lobby. My mind was full of hope and light, just as the hospital facilities. On the other hand, the mind was restless: is everything all right with the child?

The examination confirmed that our first-born was healthy and that everything was alright. The pregnancy had gone well so the wait could continue as normal.


“In a moment I will become a mother,” I thought. Soon we would see her, our long-awaited child.

The wait on the blue sofa was not long. The previous day we had been sitting on a similar sofa when we had a consultation about the method of the delivery. Then we found out that the delivery had to be by caesarean section, preferably on the next day. The child was still in breech position and there was too little amniotic fluid. No risks wanted to be taken, so we agreed that we would come the next morning to the maternity ward to wait for our turn.

Already in half an hour we were taken to the treatment room, where the nurse prepared me for the surgery. Then the tension grew almost unbearable. I remember trembling with cold and fear as we moved into the operating room. Everything was new, fascinating. Bright lights, lots of staff. For them, the situation was routine, one surgery among others. But for me, for us, a unique event.

And after a while she was in my arms. My child, my precious.

The circle closes

Becoming a mother raised many questions, perhaps the biggest of which was my own future in working life. As a teacher, my maternity leave started just at the end of the school year. Returning to another city for part-time teaching job no longer seemed sensible to the child’s well-being. At the same time, the decision to resign was a heavy one, as I had to leave behind wonderful, skillful students and colleagues. I also knew that employment in Kuopio, in my own field would be challenging. But there would be hope, after all, I was well educated and had gained a lot of work experience.

At first, I was positive about finding a job: I could always do something else if I didn’t get a job in my field. However, getting a job from my hometown seemed to be difficult. And who would hire a fresh mother, a profession changer?

Then I noticed a recruitment training led by Brande Ltd. My second child was just one year old when I decided to jump into the unknown and go to work as a business value producer for the Kuopio-based design and architecture company, Partanen & Lamusuo Ltd. The reward would be a dream job, and similar opportunities would not occur very often. So, I accepted the challenge with excitement! My first job was to design the Palad design brand’s website, which, among other things, presents that Tuma sofa at Kaari hospital.

Now Vilja is four years old, Aura is two years and I am happily at work. The blue sofa started the most amazing story of my life.

* * *

Thanks to the staff of Kuopio University Hospital for the excellent care on that beautiful day. You made our important moment memorable.

Thank you Jaana and Heikki for your trust, workplace and care – as well as the well-designed Kaari Hospital. And the sofa that changed my life.

Many thanks to Brande Ltd for organizing the training. Without you, I wouldn’t be here. The will to change people’s lives, give a new direction and purpose – you do important work.

However, the biggest thanks go to my own family. You are ❤.

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