Everyone is travelling, moving to stand still or to race ahead. Everyone is in transit getting to a better place or trying to get back to when life was kinder. Some feel like they have the route planned then realise their maps are outdated; some have visions of disappearing off into the sunset somehow leaving their existence behind; some meander without caring to see.
I used to be the kind of person who liked things planned, scheduled and punctual. From the age of 12, I was already trying to control my weight to the pound, my pocket money to the penny and my handwriting to the end flourish. Maybe it’s why I became a teacher: to have my day, year and career already mapped out for me. I lived by my watch, my diary and my calendar. But I soon learned that to live life like that was only existing. To take the spontaneity out of living was to render it much less that. My learning came early. As I started to teach, I quickly had to step in for someone who’d had a nervous breakdown. She’d made it two weeks into the first term. The way the Head knew she wasn’t coming back? She’d already spent time planning every SINGLE lesson for the entire academic year, every lesson into 5, 10, or 20 minute slots. You can’t do that and teach teenagers at the same time. I learnt then that planning can break you.
So nearly four years ago I, practically on a whim, moved to Australia. I knew I had to break cycles if I could. I knew I’d learn so much more being in a country where I’d met only three people before. I knew that I couldn’t come with plans. I just had to wing it. Each day, I got to decide who I wanted to be or who I could be with what I had in my energy, spirit and ambition. It’s been a hard slog, I’m not going to lie. And sometimes the comfort of home was/ has been almost too much to ignore as the tears fell and the heart ached and the spirit flagged.
Finally though, I’ve learnt the happy balance of the two states: have some stability and flow with the rest. I can easily admit it’s taken me some tow to three years to learn flow with some sense of grace. Some days it’s still a struggle but I feel myself striking my path now, feeling strong enough to listen to myself instead of always soaking up the expectations surrounding me. The UK has now become my barometer, to see how much I hold true now compared to then. And as I’ve lost a few friends along the way, new shining soul mates have popped up to walk nearby. Pushing myself to be more true has seen me return to nature (I’ll invest in this more soon!), photography, open-hearted loving with friends and more. I’m not a polished specimen or an embodiment of success. But I am a me that’s growing back into the form I’m meant to be.
Thank you to all of you who visit here once, thrice or even daily to see how I’m journeying.