I suggest a rebirth not a closing down.
Diana 49, from Norfolk. Married with one son and works full time in Education.
How are you?
I am happier than I’ve been for a long time. I am making a little life for myself. After a lot of changes, I now like the job I have and am enjoying the new counselling course I’m on. I’m learning to understand why I am like I am.
What are your dreams?
To have space to make choices. The counselling course has definitely broadened my outlook on life. It’s really healthy to get out of your box every now an then. At the start of my 40s I began to wondered if this is it! I knew I wanted something new, something different. Once women become fifty they become invisible, I suggest a rebirth not a closing down.
There’s a lot of people like me rethinking their lives, having had cancer, it puts things into perspective.
I'd like to have my own space. My husband impinges on my space, he doesn't have boundaries. I want a partner that fulfils me in a physical way as well as through memories. He’s much older than me, I’m yearning to be with someone who has had a shared childhood. I’m not afraid of being on my own. He’s been a very positive influence in my life. We have a child together, I’m bound to him, we have a lasting connection.
How do you think other people see you?
I don’t care.
How do you see yourself?
As having an inner core of strength because I’ve come through some really tricky times. I try really hard to be reliable and take responsibility for myself.
What’s your most memorable experience?
My Mum dying twelve years ago. It was such a shock, she was my foundation.
How do other people see you?
Approachable, caring and elegant.
What brings you down?
Sometimes I feel hemmed in and emotionally trapped. I find that difficult. I withdraw. I go to the gym or just get out of the house. I have resentment. I want to make choices about my time, but I feel guilty.
How do you best express yourself?
I have a very expressive face!
Who or what inspires you?
People that speak out, people like Ken Robinson. My women friends, they have got me through and been supportive and kind. I have a wonderful network of women. I get more from relationships with women than I do with men.
What do you think about life?
It’s about having a purpose, being useful, feeling needed and wanted. Having connections with people - having relationships.
What would you like to leave for the next generation?
A sense of responsibility.
Are you free?
I am free to make choices but I feel bound to responsibility at home.
What have you taken form today?
I’ve been thinking about the stuff we’ve been talking about, it’s good to explore and what I’ve heard is reassuring. I’m going to a reunion soon, I was thinking everyone’s going to have got it sussed, but now I know they haven't.