“It’s better than winning the lottery!” were the first words I uttered when I heard I had made history by being the first European, non Royal, or celebrity to be chosen as the Godmother of a ship. But not just any ship this was Royal Caribbean’s fabulous Independence of the Seas, which in 2008 was the biggest cruise ship in the world.
Why then, at the age of sixty six have I decided to start a blog? Well, my life has had many ups and downs and twists and turns. But in spite of everything I consider myself extremely lucky. I have two wonderful children, a lovely daughter in law and three gorgeous Granddaughters.
I had my daughter Alicia late in life and at a time when most people are saying goodbye to their teenage children, I was into nappies and breast feeding.
When she went off to study music and philosophy at university almost three years ago, I knew that I would have to let go of her, and find something for myself to fill the hole my daughter had left.
My friends and family had urged me to write down some of my experiences, so when I found myself retiring due to my husbands diagnosis of Parkinson’s disease, I decided I too would go back to education and was accepted onto a degree course. However, Student Finances had other ideas and said that as I had done my teacher training in the early seventies I wasn’t eligible for a loan. More to the point, they suggested that as degrees have been dumbed down, my Cert Ed was now equivalent to a degree!
Feeling frustrated and knowing I had a wealth of experience within the charity sector, I offered my services to High Peak Homestart and was accepted on their twelve week training course. I absolutely loved it. I met like-minded people and felt that I was making a difference again.
Last year a local older people’s group was in danger of folding as they couldn’t find a coordinator, so I decided to take on the role and have thoroughly enjoyed it. Most of the members are fabulous and feisty women. I have learnt so much from them, whilst having tremendous fun.
I have always dipped in and out of the Women’s Institute organisation and was voted President of our local WI last year.
This year I have decided to give myself new challenges:
1. Start a blog
2. Get fit
4. Go on adventures both near and far
5. Look for another community project I can sink my teeth into
I love observing people, and as I look around at women my age and older, I see some marvellous ladies who are achieving great things. With age comes wisdom and knowledge, which means we still have a great deal to contribute to society and fulfil our own potential.
I hope you enjoy this journey with me as we cruise, hopefully smoothly, with the occasional choppy water, but always glamorously and in fabulous style, whilst enjoying the finer things in life, looking back with more than a little nostalgia thrown in, taking our loved ones with us, to share in the excitement, and always making memories and finding some joy in each day no matter what life throws at us.
Much love Elizabeth
Good company in a journey makes the way seem shorter. — Izaak Walton