This year the Queen of Australia celebrates her Diamond Jubilee.
I remember her crowning in 1953 and in 1954 I did but see her passing by on Stirling Highway.
Back then I thought her regal and quite beautiful, although I never took to her voice or her one-colour outfits.
These memories returned as I watched The Diamond Queen on ABC TV and my emotional responses startled me. Then it hit me – I missed my mother.
Not so much the mother I had, but the mother I wanted, the resilient one, strong, steadfast and constant in the face of all odds.
When I screen old home movies I see snatches of a regal looking woman who I, along with others, thought beautiful, a woman in multi-coloured outfits and whose laughter could lift a dull spirit.
Unfortunately, my mother’s early life was not a happy one and she battled insecurities and low self-esteem throughout her 84 years.
She never had the stamina of the Queen, her support, or her grace under fire, but she was my mum and mum to my three brothers. No-one loved us more.
She was, in short, our queen and now, even though she is no longer with us, we will never forget her.
And that’s how I feel about the other Queen. When Australia becomes a republic it will in no way diminish the impact she has had on my personal life or the life of this country.
I don’t mind the young princes either but I don’t want them as titular heads of my country, in the same way I don’t want my brothers running my family and I don’t want to run my son’s.
I will mourn this Queen, but welcome an Australian Republic.