What has surprised you about moving into Berwick? What were your biggest fears and how did you overcome them?
I felt I was too young. I have always been around younger people, and I have a wicked sense of humour that they seem to understand. I was very involved with the Monterey Seniors Centre and was part of their activities. I arranged and took people on trips– I oversaw the bus excursions. Nobody knew how old I was, even though I was the same age as everyone else, but I have always had younger friends, I colour my hair, and I have just felt younger throughout my life.
Moving to Berwick, in my mind at the time, was going to be too big a change for me, but my husband was ready, and I wanted to give it a shot. When we moved here, it didn’t interfere with his golf or tennis groups, but for me, it felt like I was cut-off from the life I was used to. I was also involved with the Canadian Performing Arts (18-22 crowd) so I was so involved with my greater community and I was having hard time connecting the two. I felt like I wanted to run away… but after about 9 months, I had a deep conversation with a very dear friend of mine that I had made at Berwick which really helped me look at things differently.
Now you couldn’t pay me to leave here! Since moving here, I’ve opened up like a butterfly. I really have!
I have developed skills that I never thought I had or knew I had. I’ve found purpose in ways I did not expect to. I’ve joined the Berwick Buzz, our resident-run magazine, and I love interviewing people and bringing out in them what they are proud of. I find they relate to me easily; that they are sharing things they may not have shared before, and I love that because I’m so genuinely interested in everything they are saying.
I have made more friends here in one year and 2 weeks than I made in 20 years. I’m talking about good, genuine friends who care for you, who look after you. I can rely on these people in ways I have never been able to in the past. I don’t ask my children for many favours because they are very busy in their lives, and to now have people that I can rely on in so many ways is truly unbelievable to me. I never had that before because we moved every two years, as my husband was in the Military. But, I’ve always felt my purpose in life is to be flexible and open to opportunity. Not many women I know would have moved across the world to Uganda with 4 young kids, but that was one of the locations we were posted and I have always been a risk taker.
Moving to Berwick was a risk for me. I had to be flexible! Now, I can proudly say it was one of the best moves my husband and I could have made and in turn, I hope sharing my story with others helps reassure them that it really is a good move to make.