Ann Mitchell thinks her granddaughter, Alice, is "crazy".
From her Sydney nursing home, Ann has watched telecasts featuring the 22-year-old daughter of her son, Duncan, as she has negotiated her "dream" season with the Swans.
"She thinks I'm crazy, that I play AFL," Mitchell said of her grandmother, after visiting her at the nursing home. "She thinks that I'm a bit mad.
"But she's just proud of me, that I'm doing what I love - and I'm enjoying it."
After making her AFLW debut in round one in September, Mitchell has remained a key contributor of a surging Swans side who are two wins away from a maiden grand final berth.
Mitchell - whose path to the AFLW included a country detour to Gunnedah, a gritty "f*** it" mentality and a rebound from a devastating injury - will line up for the Swans against the Crows in a semi-final at Norwood Oval in Adelaide on Saturday, November 18.
The Swans, who snuck into the finals after winning their final three regular-season games, notched a 17-point elimination final win over the Suns on Saturday, November 11.
It was the side's first-ever finals victory, with Mitchell selected at halfback.
"We're peaking at the right time," Mitchell said. "So yeah, we're just enjoying it."
Ann introduced Duncan to the Swans when he was growing up. Her Sydney-raised granddaughter's childhood was full of memories of family trips to the SCG to watch the Swans men play.
Now bedecked in a Swans jersey, the former Gunnedah Pochette said she was "living the dream". Her surreal existence included her content-acquisition job at Fox Sports, she said, and a home life that was "really, really good".
"I couldn't be any luckier than what I am right now."
"The fact that I'm in it, right now, it still feels like it's not real," she continued, adding: "It really is a dream come true, that not many people get to experience."
Mitchell's sunniness contrasts starkly with the deep despair she felt upon rupturing her ACL at training ahead of the 2022 AFLW season, which she missed because of the injury.
"I am glad it happened," she said, defiantly, of the injury. "Because it made me a lot stronger and a much better athlete. But that was a massive hurdle that I had to overcome."
It wasn't the first massive hurdle Mitchell had to negotiate to get to where she is.
For example, the COVID-19 pandemic resulted in the 183-centimetre key defender losing her job as an AFL coach at her former Sydney school, Pymble Ladies' College. So she relocated to Gunnedah in early 2020 with her then-partner, Will Tibbs.
"When this pathway started to pave its way to the AFLW," she said, "I was just like 'Ah, f*** it, let's just do it; let's just put all our eggs into this basket, just see where it goes. And now I'm here."
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