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All about Me:
- Double Olympian (Athens ’04 & Beijing ’08) in field Hockey for New Zealand
- 145 Test Matches for New Zealand including a World Cup and Commonwealth Games
- Member of NZ Olympic Committees Athlete Development Pgm 2011-2013
- Bachelors Degree in Sports Managment
- Post Graduate Diploma in Business Administration (Management) with Merit
- Mother to 3 delightful children: two boys 8 & 6 years and a wee girl just 11 months old.
15 Possibly Interesting Facts About Me:
- I found out I was pregnant with our first child 8 days before my first game at the Beijing Olympics!!!!
- We moved from NZ in 2012 to Dublin, then to Wales in 2014 and in May 2017 we moved to Grenoble, France……but we don’t speak French eek!
- I wholeheartedly agree with this tidbit my Dad told me: ‘If God wanted me to touch my toes, he would’ve put them on my knees’!!
- I’ve ridden a Bull – yup & it was a big one.
- My favourite childhood memory is camping with my family. It was before shower blocks, glamping, camping with power and snap up tents. It used to take Mum & Dad a day to get all our tents up with the old metal poles, while we hunted for firewood!
- In retrospect I now realise that after retiring from Hockey post the Beijing Olympics, I had a mild form of PND mingled with PRD (Post Retirement Depression.)
- I lost my Dad to Cancer a couple of months before the Beijing Olympics and my Mum when I was 6 months pregnant with my daughter. Cancer sucks and doesn’t discriminate.
- My teenage crush was on Brad Pitt (of course) and I always wanted Jennifer Aniston’s hair! (Who didn’t, right?!)
- I’ve skydived over Fiji – AMAZING
- I’ve even raced a Formula Challenge Racing Car
- I named my childhood cat Fantasmagoria Abony (Fantas for short)
- When I was 7, I wanted to change my name to Bridie McBride
- When I was 17, I went to Italy to play professional hockey for 2 seasons – AMAZING
- My favourite game as a kid was roller hockey up our driveway with my sisters.
- Cannot think of number 15 sorry….
Why Finding Jaimee?
Here I am writing a blog after spending the last few years thinking I really had nothing to say.
I used to have an exciting life travelling the world playing Hockey for New Zealand all while working or studying full time – mostly doing all 3 at once.
Towards the end of my hockey career, I longed for a home life and kids. The reality of that dream was way harder than I could’ve imagined. International sport exerts a pressure that you just don’t feel in other aspects of life. There are massive highs and lows but at the end of the day, it is up to you to look after yourself and prepare yourself mentally and physically the best you can. No one else can do this for you and you can’t do it for anyone else. When not playing, you’re recovering, preparing, sleeping, eating and counting down the precious alone minutes until you need to train again. It was all about me and it had to be to compete at that level. This was my comfort zone and a ‘normal’ life was outside of that.
Then I retired after the Beijing Olympic Games with 145 test caps – as I was pregnant (I actually got pregnant before the Games but that is a whole separate post!). I went back to work and suddenly nobody was asking about me or my hockey, they were asking about my baby. When he was born the mothers in the baby groups didnt give two figs how many international test caps I had only whether their child was rolling before mine.
I had a form of post retirement depression mingled with post natal depression, and it was tough.
Eventually an opportunity came up to move from Auckland to Dublin and Hubby and I jumped at the chance. Our life was in a bit of a rut and something needed to change. So we packed up our two young boys and off we went.
After I had finally settled in Dublin, I needed to do something for myself so I started my Post Graduate Diploma in Business Administration and I finished it in Wales where after 6 years out of the workforce (& thanks to my new qualification) I landed a job. I was starting to resurface, I could see light again.
Then my Mum died when I was 6 months pregnant with my daughter and the light seemed to fade a little as I started searching again for a replica of that high I got through sport.
Mum always told me to write things down and through some gentle encouragement from friends, here I am. I suppose I’ve done a lot and our life is not normal. This blog is about finding my place again, getting my Genki back and sharing our experiences of moving to multiple countries with small kids. There have been funny moments, sad moments and hard times – but there have been magical times, wonderful people and unforgettable experiences too.
I hope you enjoy my posts and I welcome any feedback, shares, requests or friendly banter.
All About his Blog:
When I talk about the ‘big life’, I’m talking about finding that thing that I’m supposed to be doing, that thing that makes a difference that will make me feel fulfilled again. That ‘I’m supposed to be something more with my life‘ feeling.
I have experienced the ‘big life’ through my sports career. The incredible high that comes with giving yourself fully to a single passion, pushing yourself to the extreme limits of physical and mental exertion for success. I’ve been fortunate enough to have a wonderful Hubby and 3 great kids. But its time to get back to me. So I will write from my perspective about all the areas of my life; past and present, and the adventures ahead starting with our move to France. I have big plans for this blog (even if I don’t quite nail my own big life plan) and how I see my experiences supporting people in all sorts of areas. So please join me and watch this space as I rediscover that ‘big life’ feeling and pass on my lessons to you.
Love, Jaimee oxo