What brings me wisdom is knowing I’m wrong.
Michelle 42, from Liverpool. Twice divorced. She has two kids and works in finance.
How are you?
I am happy. In a reflective place. The penny is starting to drop on many things. I feel I’ve got space and pleasure in my life and I am happy. In the past I had lots of fears and anxieties about the future, but now the future is here - I’ve survived and it wasn't traumatic.
What’s your most memorable experience?
Having my first child. I was unbelievably excited. It was like every Christmas I’d ever had all rolled into one. Then the fun began. Forty- Eight hours after my waters broke and seventy - two hours of fruitless labour, I definitely thought I was going to die. An emergency C section followed. I felt like a nasty black banana skin but there was a sensation that my work as a women was done. A perfect ripe banana had emerged and I was the ravaged skin only fit for the bin - it wasn't the chapter I was expecting. Later, I just remember being in the middle of the hospital corridor with milk and tears pouring out of me!
What brings you down?
Frustration! I need to know solutions. I am an image person. Hypothetically when you stand in a room and all the doors are shut, that’s when I envisage depression. If there are corridors and doors that can be opened then that’s when the depression goes. It’s where your mind is at the time.
What are your dreams?
I aspire to have a house in the country where there is an annual village fete. Join the WI and have a garden that is wonderful. I’d have a dog and a landcover, muddy boots and an AGA. There’s time to bake and do something industrious; a project to get stuck into. This is very inconsistent with other peoples views and my actual life - I’m a bond trader in the City and work in a very male orientated world!
What do you think about marriage?
I must think it’s a good thing I’m about to do it for the third time! It’s a source of emotional support. We support our children, we want grown up support, the problem is a lot of husbands become an extra child.
How do you see yourself?
There’s a dichotomy. On one hand I’m a solid, capable provider for my Children and am ticking all the boxes and on the other I’m insecure - less so the older I get but I worry that one day I’ll get found out.
How do you feel about body image?
Well I love my new boobs, no one loves them more than me. I have worried about my weight for forty years and loathed my body for periods of time. I was bullied at school and have low self esteem.
What do you like about yourself?
I have a deep sense of feeling and understanding about situations and what’s happening on a deeper level. I enjoy learning about myself; exploring, you should always explore and visit things - go to the dark places! I love finding out I’m wrong. What brings me wisdom is knowing I’m wrong.