Note: I've intentionally omitted Melara's surname as it's relatively well known, at least in and around Cormyr. If she grows close enough with someone, she might be willing to reveal it to them, otherwise she prefers to keep it to herself as much as possible no matter how far afield she travels.
Melara grew up in a very large, prominent noble family in Suzail, the capital city of Cormyr. For the most part, she lived a life typical of her status. The most impactful of her experiences growing up in the Forest Country all revolve around the birthing of children. When she was only seven years of age, her mother gave birth to her younger sister. Unfortunately, the baby was stillborn and this hit Melara hard. Only two short years later, she truly did receive a new sister, however, the delivery was too much stress for the mother who died in childbirth, further scarring the young Melara's heart.
Eventually, her father remarried and Melara grew close with her stepmother. When she was fifteen and nearly a woman grown, her stepmother, heavy with child, took a retreat to the countryside to relax during the final stages of her pregnancy. The state of her stepmother gave Melara a great amount of anxiety but her family and attendants did their best to soothe her worries. When the child finally arrived, unfortunately, the experience was, yet again, a difficult one. Luckily, this time, the mother-to-be brought along an older woman named Ina who was a well loved midwife from the church of Lathander. Ina seemed to know exactly what to do despite the troubled delivery. She was also keen enough to notice Melara's fearful state and took steps to mitigate it. She asked Melara to do several steps such as boiling water, fetching towels, and other errands that would normally be best left to servants. This helped distract the poor girl, however, and she made it through the process without much trouble at all! Seeing her new baby sister arrive in the world, healthy and beautiful, she came to recognize what Ina had done for her, even while she was so busy with the delivery itself. Inspired, she took a keen liking to the older woman and a friendship of sorts blossomed as Melara questioned her endlessly about her experiences, learning, and travels.
Not much later, upon reaching maturity at the age of sixteen, Melara informs her family that she is disinheriting herself and is joining the church of Lathander, with Ina as her mentor. There was some turmoil for a while but eventually there is little the family can do to prevent her taking her vows at the temple in Suzail. She joined the ranks of the clerics and traveled all over Cormyr, the Dalelands, and other surrounding areas doing missionary work, all while learning from her mentor and practicing medicine in all its forms. As much as she loves her role in the church of Lathander, she sometimes wonders if the faith of Ilmater might have been a better fit for her but she's fully dedicated to following through on her commitment to Lathander, in no small part thanks to her relationship with her mentor. She does still offer occasional prayers to Ilmater, however, and the god will likely always hold a special place in her heart.
At some point in her recent past, Melara was travelling with the Lathanderian mission which passed through the town of Ashabenford. About a day after leaving, a rider came charging towards the missionaries' camp late at night during a rainstorm. The rider was a man named Artemis Harcross and he came to find the midwife he knew had been travelling as part of the mission. Apparently his sister, who Melara had checked on only the day before, had gone into labor nearly a full moon early and Harcross was desperate to seek aid for his beloved sister and future nephew. The pair raced back to the settlement where Melara was able to safely deliver the child despite the risks and stayed with the family to tend to the underdeveloped child with herbs and magic until it was healthy and well. Melara and Harcross formed a close friendship during this time. Some time after Harcross had been recruited to the Order of the Brass Thistle, the company was in search of additional healers to add to their number and Harcross was quick to put Melara's name forward as a likely candidate. Having been briefed on the group's activities and need of reliable healers, she decided a change of pace was finally due and she joined to see the potential good she could bring about on a larger scale through the Order's efforts.