It was a certain successful female tennis player named Maria Sharapova who said 'If everything was going smoothly you would never build character.
' That was certainly a true statement. Without all the struggles in my past, I certainly wouldn't have been as strong as I feel today. Those struggles have shaped the person I am and I'm not going to hide that, I'm going to show it off.
Those words are something I uttered to the Blyth Spartans chairman as part of my interview. I was willing to be open about my journey and how I intended to lead the team and myself to better things. The club was going places and I was ready to ensure we would go even further, I was confident and that's what Tony liked.
There is certainly a lot of pressure on my shoulders, he reminded me of that fact as we spoke. If I was to be appointed as manager of Blyth, I would be the first female manager to step foot into the men's game in England. The media would be all over me and I would have to be ready to face that. I understood and set out my plan of action, I was ready to embrace the cameras.
I thrived under pressure, I was ready for anything that was going to be thrown at me. That was a part of my newly found character, one that is still very much developing. I was open to new ideas and always looking for different people's input - I was to be a woman of the people.
Myself and Tony understood each other well. We both have similar ideologies as to the direction to move in. He understood my philosophies I had in mind, nothing too far-fetched as the club are still semi-professional but something that had the makings of developing the club into a club for the future.
In the past, Tony told me that managers had been very short-sighted about the vision of the football club. They only planned ahead to the upcoming season and whilst that could sometimes be a good thing, it left the club struggling the next. The previous manager, Alun Armstrong was the only man who seemed to be innovative and think ahead but sadly after leading the club to this level of football, had to leave for personal reasons yet to be understood.
Discussions lasted for a long time, whilst I was a local lass I still had only brief knowledge of the club so that was where Tony educated me. The history of the club interested me, we had reached this division before but quickly saw an exit and a real decline - this was something Mr Platten wanted to avoid.
All around me were pictures of the vivid memories of the club, some more recent like the famous cup run in 2014 where Blyth led 2-0 against Championship side Birmingham, whilst others captured the cubs turn to semi-professional football pre-World War I. Tony could tell me the history behind each picture that hung on the walls.
Tony himself was a man from the town and who decided to buy out his local football club who he supported as a child. He breathed the club and always had the interest of the club in his heart. He was someone a fan could connect with during the game because he would always stand with the fellow fans, the club had that typical community feel you get down in these leagues.
That's why we came to the decision that this was the right move for both parties. He handed me a contract that was written up and offered me a pen. I felt the smile cross my face, the tears began to form in my eyes and Tony laughed and told me 'You are perfect for this, you deserve this,' as I signed my name on the paper. I was officially the new manager of Blyth Spartans Football Club and the first women to become a manager in the men's game. It all began now.
And that's where we are at today, just a few hours after signing that contract that has shown me that hard work pays off. It was the great Audrey Hepburn who said, 'Nothing is impossible. The word itself says I'm possible.
' That's the motto I now live by because if you told me this would happen on Christmas Day 2016, I would have laughed in your face.
: That's true, very excited to get going!
: Neither will happen.
: Cheers mate! Glad you're enjoying it so far.
: Cheers Aaron. After reading it back I can see why you got that impression.