Ann says about herself:
I love being a Grandmother. After ten years of being an “empty nester”, the arrival of grandchildren brought joy to my and my husband’s lives; they are a wonderful surprise. Having grandchildren has brought us into even closer relationship with each other and with our adult children, and provided us with opportunities to heal family dynamics.
In 2015 as I headed for retirement, I was very aware of this being the first time since I was 21 that I would not have an employment contract. I was rather unsettled by the prospect and I decided I would go back to University and undertake a Masters to develop a new skill-set as a Social Researcher. During my dissertation research I encountered a wonderful book called Composing a Further Life by Mary Catherine Bateson. I discovered that my unsettledness was not that unusual and was indicative of moving into a stage in my life cycle that she called Active Wisdom. As I was experiencing, a transition through ‘retirement’ can often be tinged with a sense of withdrawal, confusion and loss of identity. What she challenged me to see was that this could be a wonderful opportunity to access my natural inner drive to share the wisdom I have gained from my rich life experience. To step into a refreshed engagement with life that harnessed a new sense energy and commitment to the wellbeing of others and myself.
My research interest is how Baby Boomers are making the most this stage of “Active Wisdom”. I want to create connections, conversations and programs that develop the wellbeing of my generation in the service the people we love.At this event we will have a conversation about what I gathered both from my personal journey over the last year and from the contribution of the grandparents I interviewed. It was a great experience to be in conversation with such wise elders who in different ways were committed to making a difference to the people they love.