Hanging from the Chandeliers…another TSIB interview

A bit of a change of pace this week….I seem to have been in contact with a lot of women in the last few weeks who are contemplating what they do with their lives as their kids grow. Whether thats women emerging from the fog of small babies, women dealing with teenagers who don’t ‘need’ them as much as they used to or just people thinking how they can fit a new career into the mix.

As soon as you have kids you get a lot of chatter amongst groups about ways to fit in exercise when you have tiny babies. The mothers group I belong to (my second one…) has always been pretty proactive about finding ways to catch up without coffee and cake, a lot of us meet for walks, meet at parks or talk about the fun runs we enter (or fail at…oh hang on thats me).

Facebook is great for reconnecting with old buddies – last year I got a page suggestion from a school friend who was setting up her own business as a personal trainer and food coach – she makes me laugh with her hard line approach, the way she seems to balance her kids and her lack of tact in putting up with people’s excuses. Here she is chatting about her space in between…she married her Year 10 formal partner – I can still remember that night…chokers were in fashion and Boyz II men were the slow dance specialists…I chose a guy whose bow-tie matched his vest (little did I know I would remain inept at choosing good men until I was in my 30s…)


Lovely Maree…tell me a little about you?

Wow, this is harder than I thought ….. Usually I’m talking about my kids or my job and that’s quite easy. Have I lost me, is that weird that I can’t string a sentence or two together to tell you a little  about myself???  Do  I even exist anymore? Mmmmmm. Well I guess I do because that washing doesn’t get done on its own, neither does the cooking or the cleaning, so there you have it,  I am a person.

Me , Maree,  a 34 year old woman with 3 beautiful, hyperactive kids (and yes 2 out 3 have diagnosed ADHD so they are hyperactive,  the little one is too young to be diagnosed, however he is definitely showing signs of it) Georgia is 11, Kaylan is 9 and Kye is 4, he was my little surprise. I am married to Bennett, my best friend, my soul mate and someone I can be my silliest, craziest self around. We have been together since age 15, a long time I know, but when you’re friends before you’re lovers it seems effortless.

I worked in retail for many years and loved the challenge of getting the sale. The Body Shop was my last retail job and there I was trained as a makeup artist which led to my secret passion for makeup.

Tell me about being a young mum?

I started a family young (23) and was not really worried about anything but being with my babies. This led me to isolate myself a little, as my friends were all off travelling the world and having adventures, studying at uni or just out partying, I was at home content with my little girls. But after a while you need a little something for you! So I joined my local gym. I have always loved being active and playing sport and I thought this was a great way to do something I loved as well as something that was good for my body and mind. After 2 weeks of visiting the gym, I got a job there on the front desk, it was great, and I got to be me, Maree! I enjoyed being around other people who enjoyed being fit and healthy.

How did you choose to react when your girls were diagnosed with ADHD??

During that time I had another baby, a beautiful boy. Back to being mum it was for me. During this time was when both my girls were diagnosed with ADHD. It was a tough year. Going from doctor to doctor, all wanting to medicate them. I chose not to, but instead to change their diet, no colourings, preservatives and additives. I did loads of research and put it all in action, it worked! Not only were they on the food plan, the whole family was. Their behaviour improved and I lost weight. Was this how easy it was?  So I took on studying nutrition, fitness and personal training. I wanted to help other kids and families.

So what did you do with what you’d learnt?

I knew I was not able to work the hours I needed to still pick up and drop off my kids at school in a regular job, so I decided I would work for myself. I could choose my own hours and still be there for my kids.

So today a year and a half on, I am successfully running Health Me, a Food and Fitness Coaching business,  I have 3 crazy, loving kids that are no longer hanging from the chandeliers (well more like IKEA lightshades)

I have changed as a person because I no longer care about what other people think, maybe because my life is so chaotic (in a nice way) that I don’t have the time. I think as you grow older you do prioritise things a little differently. Dinner needs to be cooked before you can even think about when you last had a haircut? And I’m not saying that you should neglect these things however, you do master the art of making a pony tail look great, and your 5 minute make up job is not bad either.

Life is good, if only we took a moment each day to look at what we have achieved and celebrated it, even if it is a silent 3 cheers for me. Hipbip hooray x 3.

Thanks Maree…click here for more info about her

So what do you think…whats one of the ways you took a challange and turned it into an opportunity??