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Be brave enough to suck at something new

Woman sitting on sofa back looking relaxed and into distance to her right
Supplied by Annie de Merindol


Hi, I’m Annie, Founder and Editor of Midlife Slices.​ I’m a media/communications professional by day but in my heart of hearts, I’m a writer.

Midlife Slices has been a little idea of mine for years, one I have sat on and sidelined and not dared to voice in anything more than the whisper of The Unworthy. Yet here we are. It has finally had life breathed into it and it feels bloody amazing!

A little about me….

I was born in Sydney, Australia, arguably one of the most spectacular cities in the world. I have two elderly parents still straining tea and toasting crumpets and putting up with each other’s shit after 60yrs, three brothers, four nephews, and an ex-husband. I also have two kids, a 16yo daughter and a 13yo son.

In case you hadn’t noticed, that’s a lot of testosterone in one family.

The women? Just my mother, my daughter, and me. But more on that later.

I’m a first-generation Australian. I grew up without any extended family, believing ‘nannas and pops, aunties, uncles, and cousins’ was an Aussie thing, not realising (in that wonderful way that children don’t) what I was missing out on. My heritage is sewn from English, Russian, French, New Zealand, and Spanish grandparents and great-grandparents, and so on. On a good day, I appreciate the richness of this tapestry; other days the cultural jumble makes my head spin.

In many ways and to many people, my childhood was idyllic, filled with arts and culture and foreign exchange students and community activism and international travel. But there was a darker side, too.

I’m a child sexual abuse survivor. If you are, too, I see you. I see you through the grimy lens through which we’ve been forced to view the world.

I’m medically diagnosed with generalised anxiety disorder (GAD) and clinical depression. And while it’s not officially recognised as a diagnosis, when I learned about C-PTSD, it answered a lot of questions for me around how my life has played out.

On reflection, I was already deeply depressed as far back as my mid-teens – I have fantasised passionately and often about ending my life – but lacked the language, resources, or self-awareness to articulate that or seek help, though my diaries from the time speak volumes.

I’m innately curious. I love to read. I love solitude and intimacy in equal measures. I’ll always choose philosophy and nature over small talk and Snapchat filters.

I am privileged, indeed. But I know trauma and neglect and suffering. I know debilitating mental illness and pain and dysfunction and the chaos of addiction, and the deeply disordered behaviours and ways of operating that accompany, enable, and protect us from that which is so painful it cannot be spoken.

I am also unbelievably fortunate to have learned about the healing and recovery process. Not the process, just a process, just me and mine, and my tiny, daily story of hope.

And now I know midlife, too. Yay!

As Founder and Editor of Midlife Slices, I am driven by a desire to connect deeply with – and tell the stories of – other midlife women. My vision for this community is that it is authentic, and compelling, and healing; an evolution of the emotional kind. For myself, of course, but hopefully for others, too.

And my dream is for Midlife Slices to become a growing into, a relinquishing of oneself to the tide of, midlife that I am realising has the potential to become the greatest, most awe-inspiring period of my life.

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Championing the voices of midlife women by nurturing connections and leading conversations around the midlife experience.

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"Somewhere, something incredible is waiting to be known."

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