What can one say to describe themselves - Mother, daughter, sister, soldier, friend .... and perhaps best of all Grandma. The last couple of years have been challenging both personally and professionally but through it all one learns to look at the positive, work hard defending those that need support and to try to embrace life.
I will have clocked up 34 years in the Australian Army in a few months - I often joke I could have murdered several people and been out on parole quicker. After years of moving around the country I am now undertaking my final posting - in Brisvegas. I'm a Welfare Officer - a very gratifying (though exhausting) role that gives me a chance to look after and care for sick, ill, injured and just plain stressed out soldiers and officers. Of course I'm not on my own in the bigger picture - there is a vast network of physical and mental health professionals, padres, mentors, support personnel as well as wonderful organisations like VVCS, Veterans Affairs, RSL etc etc.
Christmas 2016 is my retirement date - always supposing I last that long. The mind is willing but I'm afraid the body is wearing out fast. You just can't wear Army boots for over thirty years and expect your knees (particularly) to feel happy about it.
I've still learning a new way of life after nearly thirty years with my husband (age is no protection for relationship breakdowns) and discovering I do have some good ideas, I can eat chocolate for breakfast if I want to and paper crafting is not a 'waste of time' but instead a great joy.
I've spent quite some time reading self help books, and diatribes on how to make friends, lose weight, embrace retirement and generally improve my lot in life. The funny thing is most of these do-it-yourself epistles are written by skinny, childless, single people who (whilst meaning well) usually have no first hand knowledge of the challenges faced by older Australians.
My first love is scrapping - but creating cards and more recently off-the-page projects is catching up fast. I've met some wonderful people who laugh. teach and encourage me - sometimes they even compliment me ..... and that's always very gratifying. I've even managed to have a few pages published (much to my grand children's' delight) in Scrapbooking Memories.
I'll add to my journey as new things unfold - thank you for finding the time and interest to look me up.