Episode 45 – Christine | My Body. My Story PODCAST| 45 Over 45 chapter

Updated: Jun 27


This episode touches on very deep, psychological aspects of life. Christine raises the subject of an epidemic of adult children divorcing their parents and how traumatic it is for parents can be.


Also, you will learn 10 FACTS about Christine and what she thinks about perfect body image, positive changes, and challenges of 45+ women, what is it for her to feel good and look beautiful, and what advice she would give younger women and 30-year-old self!


Christine is a strong advocate for legalizing cannabis, and she talks about the different uses and benefits of this natural medicine.


LISTEN TO THE EPISODE:

You can READ the interview transcript HERE

 

10 Facts About Christine

(at the time of the project)

  1. 50 years old.

  2. Christine is a registered nurse. She’s been a nurse for almost 20 years and works in the area of mental health and drug and alcohol in Sydney.

  3. Born in Brisbane, she moved to Sydney four months ago to make a fresh start.

  4. She sees herself going back to Western Australia (where her son was born) in 2 years after staying in Sydney for some time.

  5. Christine is a mother of two sons. One is an adult. He's 27. And the other one is a teenager, he is 16.

  6. Christine lives near the beach and loves swimming in the ocean pools.

  7. Christine likes to practice yoga. She’s been practicing yoga since she was 27.

  8. Christine enjoys cooking and learning along the way. Her favorite cuisine is Italian, and she has a tradition to take her son to an Italian restaurant for his birthday.

  9. Christine started her Law degree when she was 44 because she is interested in helping people who get discriminated against.

  10. Christine is a very strong advocate for legalizing cannabis. Because she believes that there are too many people who need to have plant medicine and they can't access it.



Watch Christine’s VIDEO interview HERE


 

INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPT :

(auto-generated)


Hi, you're listening to the My Body My Story podcast.


This is the 45 or 45 chapter where we celebrate rule breakers and role models, the women who inspire us to live life our way and to show that sensuality, beauty, soul and true essence. Here we talk about what it's like to be 45 Plus, adjusting to the changes that come with time, and will listen to the stories of our participants. If you have an interesting story to share, we would love you to participate, you can email us on info@aleksandrawalker.com or visit our website, www. aleksandrawalker.com


Hi, everyone, and Hi Christine, and welcome to our studio and to the project, my body my story. And while you're sitting in the makeup chair and Citra is doing makeup for you. I'll be asking you a few questions. So tell us a bit about yourself.


I'm a mother of two sons. One is an adult. He's 27. And the other one is a teenager.


Oh, that's nice. Yeah.


I'm a registered nurse. I've been a nurse for 20 years almost. And work in the area of mental health and drug and alcohol at the moment in Sydney. We moved to Sydney four months ago to make a fresh start.


From where?


Brisbane.


So where were you born? in Australia?


Born in Brisbane. No, it was not my son who was with me. He was born in WA. I'm chipping away at a law degree. And I've I could be it could take me another 10 years. But I don't mind because I'm interested in helping people who get discriminated against. We live near the beach. Now, which is something that I wanted to arrive at. I love swimming in the ocean pools. In Brisbane, you don't in the Gold Coast, you don't have ocean pools. And for a couple of years Sydney was attractive to me because I knew that all the ocean pools lie on the coast. So I reached the destination with the ocean pools.

I like to practice yoga. I've been practicing yoga since I was 27. And I'm 50

I go to the gym with my teenage son here in Sydney.

I like to plan travel adventures.


And I enjoy cooking very novice but learning along the way.


So what's your favourite cuisine?


Italian. Yeah. It seems to be a tradition. I take my son to his Italian restaurant for his birthday. Every year so we booked for next Sunday to go to his birthday. Yes, he's 16


Oh, that's nice. We have the same tradition as our family. But we go to Japanese restaurants. For every birthday.


It's fun.


So you said you'd like ocean pools? What is it that attracts you the most?


Well, growing up in Brisbane and having the Gold Coast as my backyard. We were always at the beach. And I suppose I was always having to go through the waves. And at least with the ocean pools, you can just treat it like a swimming pool. But you've got the ocean water. Yeah, the salt water. So I find that to be quite easy and refreshing. And Calm Yes. Don't have to get smacked around by the waves on a choppy day.


So, so interesting. You said you work in the emergency department?


I have worked in the emergency department. As a clinical nurse in Brisbane. Now I'm working in rehab in Sydney. And so it's mental health issues and drug and alcohol problems compound.


Interesting, I think it's hard work to do, but probably hopefully rewarding.


Rewarding in a sense, having the experience behind me is helpful. Obviously, we've all careers when you grow into it, but I like diversity in my career. I'd like to stay in Sydney for a couple of years. But I see myself going back to Western Australia.


Oh, you love it there?


I do love it up there. Over there. We will go into a broom for a holiday throughout COVID. And that got interrupted. So we'll have a holiday over and Margaret River at the end of the year. But I'd like to settle for a few years down in Sydney,


So what are you most passionate about?


Lifelong learning. So I started the law degree when I was 44 I had a lot of interruptions along the way which was difficult but I decided to just you know keep going with it if I felt passionate about it. So I am enrolled in one of the unis in New South Wales and I plan to start back again in October.


That's interesting. So what made you do this change from medicine to law?


Sometimes it ties in - nursing and law. There are a lot of grey areas. I suppose the


I think it's more of the,

I think it's the discrimination, I think it's when

I think I've got a passion for nurses who don't stand up for themselves. Very often, they're notorious to remain quiet because they're scared to lose their jobs. And I've been through some tricky situations where I've had to get lawyers myself, I was innocent, and I know how it feels to be treated like treated in a very malicious way by another nurse. And I had to overcome that. I got post-traumatic stress at a moderate level, and I had to take a couple of years off, and I used all the knowledge that I had as a clinician, which I believe helped me to reach that recovery stage. And try it another type of interesting therapy using medicinal cannabis. And that was actually what moved me into the healing stage. And I'm so I'm a very strong advocate, actually, for legalizing cannabis. Because I believe that there are too many people who need to have plant medicine and they can't access it.


So I suppose that ties in with nursing. I see so many people, so many clients that are hooked on opioids, and there's a long history of cannabis like it was legal 100 years ago. And they took it away. So the law was like a weapon against cannabis. So and because I'm, I've survived post traumatic stress, and I'm well, and I know what it's like to heal because it is an injury. It's a psyche injury. I just have all this knowledge. And I know that a lot of people, there's a lot of stigma around it.


So I just very bravely raise awareness on social media and sit back and observe how, how alcohol is a poison and use so often, but cannabis is so has been so left behind. So, you know, it's just known as a recreational drug. There's so much more to it than that.


So why do you think it was written off as natural medicine?


Because of the pharmaceutical companies? And I'd also, you know, strongly believe that we need pharmaceuticals. But I didn't learn about cannabis the plant at school and just like the First Nations


I heard of that. Movement. legalising that and I know that my friends living in candidates legalising them in some states in the US.


So what is the main my question the what is the main plus of that and don't you get addicted to this? Or like what's their downside of using this medicine the natural medicine, the cons and pros of this?


Well, I know that being a cannabis user I swallow a capsule and it can I guess the only side effect that I would get is that it might make me feel not necessarily tired. But I might just feel like that said I've had enough now for the week. And I and it's okay to just stop for a few days and use it when it's needed.


There are no real side effects per se. Cannabis medicine, when you swallow it and it goes through your digestive system, it's actually a different effect than when you smoke it. And growing up, we never had like hydroponic cannabis, when once I got started nursing, when I was 30, all of a sudden, all these people started to come into hospital psychotic, but it was from hydroponic cannabis. And it was very easy to identify why. And that was because they put all the chemicals to make to destroy the plant and destroy people.


I don't know who started it, but it got people on more pharmaceuticals, they had to take any psychotic medication to get back to reality. So being a cannabis medicinal cannabis user, I can't really identify. Perhaps like I said before if I was to use it every day, say after work, perhaps I might feel less motivated to do something because it relaxes yours and relaxes you so much. Your whole nervous system just stops. So it's the opposite to stress, you know, it relieves all those symptoms of stress.


So you're not you know when you're under the influence, you don't have the cortisone levels high, you know, goes out to all receptors. The endo cannabinoid system is where all the receptors are in our body. So, we didn't even learn about that at the Uni.


So, the cortisol is the number one reason for all the disease and the weight gain, and you know, the all sorts of things, which we don't like, you know, trying to fight it's and so it helps to lower the level of cortisol.


Absolutely. In fact, if one What if you go home after a bad day, and you have a capsule, and I have it organically, I don't buy the oil because you don't know what they put in. If any cortisol was rising in my blood, it would be completely depleted within half an hour. So I'm avoiding the risk of heart disease, you know, just stroke, heart attack. And, you know, I, like I said it, it took away the nightmares when I was experiencing the nightmares from post-traumatic stress. And it put me in my sleep straight back to normal. So actually corrected my nervous system, if you want to say,


Wow, it seems like magic will be medicine.


Well, because I understood about the nervous system and everything from being a nurse, I was actually really fascinated with how little it all unfolded.


I didn't understand. Is there addiction to that or not?


No addiction. And I'll give you an example. I haven't had any for two weeks because I needed to order some more. And I haven't had any withdrawals. I said to myself that I'll just have a little break, perhaps because I felt that my motivation levels were down a little bit. I mean, I still go to work. When I say motivation levels probably just had to think twice about doing a few things that I would normally just jump into. So that's all and yet, definitely no withdrawals.


You just can get addicted to pee to relax.


That's the only this should never have been taken away. It should never have. Yeah, it's crazy.

It's interesting and is it? Is it legal here in Australia?


It is in Canberra, you can grow a plant, the state of New South Wales working towards that, and they have been for 30 years. There's now a barrister in Queensland who's going to be running at the next election. So that's good because he understands all the laws and the history and the traffic laws need to change. So if we go ample, you know, we can if we have a big night on the alcohol, which I don't tend I don't have now because of, you know, I just don't because alcohol didn't really doesn't really go with my system. I could go and drive the next day and probably the limit would be normal down to point zero. But what's happening in at the moment and in New South Wales is that if the cannabis stays in your system longer your guy, if they pull you over and do a test, and it's in your system, you automatically have to go to court. So if there's an inequality with alcohol or drugs that makes people go to the emergency department that causes domestic violence. And then there's this other plant that is healing people. But you have to face the magistrate.


So what are the other application first, if you have post-traumatic stress, so it's kind of to do with the new nervous system? I heard that they use it for cancer patients as well to release pain, or am I wrong?


So yes, cancer patients use it to block pain. And there are about a million, there are millions of Australians that are actually buying at the black market, because of this because of the cancer suffering. So I think that's unfair that people who are potentially dying or going through chemo, have to try and buy it cheaper, just to get some relief from having cancer. It's used for Parkinson's disease, so it can slow down the symptoms. It's used for ADHD. It's used for anxiety.


So quite a few. You also mentioned that it's hard sometimes to be a nurse and you meet sometimes some unfair treatment. So what is that? Do want to talk about that as well.


I think that New South Wales nurses are doing pretty tough compared to Queensland and Victoria. You know, they're currently, they've just had two strikes in Sydney, and around New South Wales, because they just want to have better ratios and better pay. And I don't think the pay is too much to ask for when they've just gone through COVID. With burnout, there'd be a lot of nurses with post-traumatic stress at the moment. And I think the ratios are fearful people who are sick, you know, they're not getting, it's been clearly obvious for most of my career that patients die, and they're not getting the train nurses that they deserve. So that's a very much a human rights sort of issue too.


Okay, so let's move to our age questions. And my first question is, everyone knows that we have changes coming with age. But what positive changes? Have you noticed so far?


Well, I think the wisdom goes without saying don't you become wiser?


For some


I certainly have. I feel I will take every opportunity that comes to me I certainly have always been someone who takes risks. And I mean, life would be boring if we just didn't like changes, you know. So I definitely don't have a problem with changes.


What is the biggest challenge for you at the moment?


So I haven't seen my older boy, he's 27 for seven years. And so there's an estrangement there that I never thought I would have, we had a very close relationship. Like, because grief comes in cycles. It's more around the holidays when it hits me. But it's funny because I found the ring that he bought for me when he was 14 out of his wages from working at Hungry Jack's. And I haven't looked at it for ages. And it was just so nice to remember that, you know, you, I did have that really amazing relationship with him. So it's an epidemic at the moment when adult children divorce their parents, so to speak. And there are many elements to it. And there were quite a few adults that were responsible for coercive control. He was a very, he's a very soft, man, young guy. Sorry, he's a very soft person, and I raised him. But unfortunately, there were people that adults that should have taken more responsibility. And they turned him against me and my family. He hasn't seen his brother since he was nine. So his brother's gone through a lot of heartache. My whole family has gone through heartache.


But what was the reason for his departure? What triggered that?


When this is what escalated, he was marrying his high school sweetheart. And I received an invitation to the wedding. And it didn't have that I could bring anyone along with me. And I just asked if I could bring someone. And unfortunately, when I asked that question, it was taken the wrong way. And it was just downhill from there. It was like, You have no right to ask, you're not married. You don't have any right to ask for anyone to be at the wedding. It went down pretty, pretty bad. My son changed his surname without telling us and, you know, he it was legal for him to do that. But it was a moral thing. And I went around to try to talk to him before the wedding and his mother-in-law told me that I wasn't a good mother because I wasn't married. And I said, Well, I find that interesting because everyone wants to be around my son. But it doesn't make sense to say that to someone who raised him. So I told my son what happened and he was already brainwashed. He said to me, no, she's right. If she wouldn't have said that she's more of a mother than for me than you were. But it was only like, yeah, when he was 14 before he actually met his now-wife that he was buying, you know, bought me a ring for Mother's Day. So yeah, that that was a that was difficult. That's being difficult. You go through a lot of money, you know, do you contact lawyers, if every lawyer that I have contacted has said it's too complex, and they're right.


But what your were trying to solve through lawyer?


Well because I've got two grandchildren now that I haven't met, one is to a boy. And we only just found out that there's a little girl who's probably just under one. And I was going to go for grandparents’ rights, but to see them seek Yeah. And I did contact a lawyer a few weeks ago, and he said, Oh, it's really complex. And I said, Yeah, you know, you're right. I ended up backing down because my mother ran into my son's other grandmother, in the shop. And she got to say what she wouldn't just say, in a civil way. And she was promised that she would pass on the message. But unfortunately, my son's grandmother, the other grandmother has always been under that. Pressure of mental trauma, you know, you can't speak up, you can't do anything. So the conversation was civil. Superficial, and not effective. But I felt that I felt that that was enough for now I got through that part of the grief for the start of Easter. And feeling okay, again, until the next next holiday.


Yeah.


And, and luckily, grief isn't always my grief isn't always sitting with me. You know, I have toolbox strategies. I'm doing this today to raise awareness. So no one has. I have gone down a lot, but I've gone up a lot. Which is, I think tremendous, you know, that's what everyone needs to do was be able to get back up.


It's a very tough question you raise Yeah, I'm sure that the right people with similar problems, issues in their families, one way or another way?


I think it's important that he does sorted out eventually because if his children ever find out it might come back around to haunt them. As parents,


They may ask him why he made such a decision, and he will probably have an answer and then it will be up to the grandchildren later in life to decide if they want to find your contact you or whatever. But I think in that situation, the greatest lesson for parents is to learn. It's a very tough version of this separation, you know, the psychologists are talking about. And for the parent, I think it's it's the lesson to learn it the hard way to live their own life, like


Well, he's living a good life. So I prepared him, for the good life, and he got a lot of financial benefits from his grandparents. So they're living you know, they have the beautiful big house and the cars and I never see that as a poor me. I just think what you've done, you're very lucky, but you know, how you received it. Anyway, as long as they stay healthy and, happy, happy. That's everything to me.


Yeah, you're like, any mother would wish happiness and healthiness to their children, whatever. And wherever they are.


Yeah, you have to, I think it just man, it just makes you realize that you know that you'd never done anything so significantly wrong. You have to sort of change the perspective to get on with life. And that's something that I've had to do quite a lot is changing the narrative. Yeah. And accept the choice. Yes. I'm still raising another son. And you know, he's a joy to be with. So I'm lucky.


So what is your greatest accomplishment so far?


Birthing two boys,


being a mom,


being a mum juggling, I consider myself to be a good juggler. I've done a couple of degrees and with both boys and worked. Like I said earlier, I will get around to finishing this law degree but it doesn't really matter if I'm approaching 60. Because I'll still be working.


Are you planning to work? Or is it just for your use? You know, you're getting this degree or you're planning to change the career?


I'm not 100%? Sure. I think I will. You know, once you get the degree and do a little bit of practice for a few months, you can just go out and be a lawyer. I don't I won't be doing anything like setting the bar or anything like that, because of my age. But I will certainly be Yeah, I will be contributing a little bit to discrimination of human rights. I think that would be a nice way to grow old. And with the nursing experience, the mental health. I think that will be useful.


Yeah, I agree. Very interesting. So now when you're 50. And if you could go 20 years back to your 30 year old self. What advice would you give her?


Keep being curious. I finished my nursing degree when I was 30. So and I was I was grateful that I did it. So no regrets keep being curious. Yeah, it brings more excitement into life.


So what advice would you give younger women who will eventually undergo this age changes and reach the 50s?


Well, I would say practice Yoga because it keeps the muscle strains away. For example, I haven't practised for about six days, because I've been working night duty. But my body instantly told me today, my back told me it's time to get on your mat, and it's time to stretch. Yeah. So when I do that, it will automatically soften up all my muscles in my lower back. So I don't consider myself having definitely don't have chronic pain. But I definitely and I don't really have acute pain. But I could see myself having that if I stopped. So I think you can avoid chronic pain. It is when you're 50 if you practice yoga, or tai chi or something that where you're moving your body but relaxation as well. Meditation associated with


It helps you to stay younger for longer.


Yeah, I feel amazing. When I've done some yoga. I just what do I often say? Like, I feel like I've lubricated my body?


Oh, yeah, it's a good comparison. Yeah. I like that. So talking about the body, so you know that we have all that influences from outside about the body image? And where do you think mainly, this idea comes from? And what is it for you? Your perfect body?


Well, I think it's advertising. I remember when I was in my teenage years, I didn't really buy the, you know, the dolly magazines all the time and might have a look through friends magazines. But growing, you know, older, I can see that we especially with many young girls, and some and some adult adolescents, males that, you know, I've seen, I've cared for many people with eating disorders. And, you know, there's, there's a few in, you know, that I've seen bulimia. And I think that I haven't had a problem with my image. I've always been, fortunately, happy and proud of how I look. But I also know I've had to work at it. So if I feel that I've, you know, when I was younger, if I was you know, not exercising, I would just consciously get back into it. I think what made me always realise that if I couldn't get into that size that I was in, it was time to start moving. So that was the way I've always sort of not got myself into that negative thinking outlook on on my body image.


What does it mean for you? Feeling good? And looking good? What comes first?


Yeah, thought about this one. It's funny because I know that I love style. And I love styling myself to my body shape. And, you know, if I'm just having an average day, I know that if I put on something that's new, and I love it, I know that I'll feel good after looking good. But that's not always the case. If I do some yoga, it won't matter what I put on by always, always aim to feel good through fashion style.


It's interesting that just before one we could go I was sure that for me. Feeling good is the priority to look good. Then I finally cut my hair and they change my hairstyle and look at myself in the mirror. And that definitely adds up Like, I start feeling better, because I look better. Oh, okay. I thought it was in my young age this way, but actually, I think it's like, both, you know, it's, I think it can be a combination. Yeah. Sometimes it does help. Looking good to feel good.


Yes, but I definitely know that when I'm practicing yoga before I go out, but I don't feel like I need to look good before I just those endorphins. From the stretching, there's natural endorphins kick in.


So what makes you feel the most beautiful?


Having good health, and being able to be able to, you know, fashion plays, plays a big part of my life. So, if I feel good, I'm going to look good. So there goes that answers the question for what you just said. Yeah. In in another way. But yeah, definitely good health.


I agree with you. And my last question, and if you have any favourite quote, or thought, or what do you think about being a woman?


I believe in style, not fashion. Ralph Lauren.


Ah, that's a good one.


Yeah. Yeah, I definitely as I've grown, as I'm getting growing older, I'm embracing. I feel like I'm just embracing style more and more.


If you have an interesting story to share would love for you to participate. You can email us at info@aleksandrawalker.com or visit our website, www.aleksandrawalker.com

 

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This is the 45 over 45 chapter of MY BODY MY STORY podcast, where we celebrate rule breakers and role models - the women who inspire us to live life our way and to show their SENSUALITY, BEAUTY, SOUL, and TRUE ESSENCE.


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