Welcome to a new series on Lifestyle Fifty in which women over 50 tell their stories about work, life and love.
Today, welcome fabulous over 50 blogger, Kathy Marris from 50 Shades of Age, who’s sharing her story, “Once I was a Bookkeeper.”
For many years after I completed High School I worked in Office Administration in various roles, and eventually at the age of 30 I decided to go to TAFE where I studied for a Diploma in Accounting.
I always enjoyed the challenge of working with numbers, even though I was terrible at Maths at school. So once I learnt how to crunch numbers I found a position as a Bookkeeper with a small business.
Over the years I worked in many Bookkeeping roles, including a long stint working for Education Queensland in school administration where I was a Finance Officer. I loved the hours of working at a school because it enabled me to drop off and pick up my own children from their school, plus I got most of the school holidays off.
After I became disenchanted with the school system I took a job with the World Surf League, as offsider to the Chief Financial Officer. This was a fabulous job where I got to meet all of the world’s best surfers, like Kelly Slater and Mick Fanning, and I got to attend a lot of the surfing contests and surfing functions.
My main job was to pay prize money to the surfers after the competitions. This was all done in US dollars by international money transfers, so this was a challenge. One of the other tasks that I did was to apply for government grants, as the World Surf League was a not-for-profit organisation that relied on grants and sponsorships to fund the operation. Unfortunately after a few years of working with the WSL, a restructure of the organisation found me without a job and I had to go back working in the school system for a while.
Around 6 years ago, I was once again working in the private sector for a small business keeping their books, and whilst I was sitting at my desk being totally disinterested in what I was doing, I started to write short stories about the challenges of being a 50 something year old woman. This is when I had the idea to start up my own blog and brainstormed for a name. The name 50 Shades Of Age came to me in a lightbulb moment and since then I never looked back.
In early 2014 I resigned as a Bookkeeper and my husband and I spent 7 months travelling around Australia in our 4WD and caravan. It was the best time of my life and it gave me the freedom to write about my travels, photograph the incredible places around Australia, and return home with renewed vigour.
Shortly after I returned from our trip I was offered a job as a freelance writer working for a Hotel Marketing and Sales company. I have been working part-time with this company for the past 4 years and fortunately the job gives me the freedom and flexibility to work my own hours from home and I can continue to work on my own blog, that I now earn a small income from.
My story, like so many other inspirational stories I’ve read from women of my age, just reinforces the notion that it’s never too late to start a new career in your 50s and beyond. My advice is “if you have a dream, then go for it!”
For more stories in this series – check out … Once I was a Secretary
Women over 50 … Do you have a story to tell? Let me know in the comments below 🙂 to be featured in this series.