Last Sunday (April 6) marked a year since I came home from my time overseas (22 months earlier than planned) and I planted roots here for good. I wanted to write about this last year and about how the decision to come home changed my life, because without that chain of events this blog and the life I’m working to create wouldn’t exist in this shape and form (and in the case of this blog, it wouldn’t exist at all).
When I came home I had reverse culture shock like you wouldn’t believe. There were so many emotions mixed up in both the coming home and the “well, what on earth am I going to do now”, that I felt completely off the rails. I stopped writing my old personal blog because I started to feel like everything that came out of my head was one long whine. I was only away for 3 months in the end, but it was 3 months of being somewhere new nearly every week and I was often on my own. It took me a long time to adjust to being back in Australia.
If I’m completely honest about those first few months, I felt like a failure. I’d made such a big thing about moving and the trip, not just to other people, but to myself. I felt like I’d let myself down and in some ways learning to forgive myself was the biggest roller coaster of all. I didn’t want to “screw up” again. I felt “too old” to be making such “stupid mistakes”. I was hurt and I didn’t want to tell anyone, because it was all my silly fault. No one tells you what the consequences are for trying and then not quite reaching your goal. Or maybe they do, but you are so busy being brave about taking the leap you can’t hear it or you’ll never take that leap.
I don’t regret for a second that trip or my decision to come home – I now truly know that it was the best decision of my life. That trip took me out of my comfort zones, reminded me of who I am and helped me to see what I’m meant to be doing in my life. If that trip was a person I would give it the biggest bear hug ever (and if you know me, I’m not really a hugger). It and the last year of rebuilding was just exactly what I needed. The hard days especially. Because it’s the hard days where I wanted to do nothing but cry, where I still worked on this blog like it was all I had, told me that this blog was a big part of the answer.
This blog started as a speck of an idea I shared with just one person at first. One friend I knew I could trust to tell me if the idea of a home blog about happy imperfection was a good idea or a stupid one. She told me it was something worth trying. So I shared it with another two friends, who also loved the idea, and I started writing posts in word documents. The perfect name came to me, and then I sat on it all until I could find the perfect font for the logo. This was going to be the thing I got right. I didn’t want something temporary, I knew from my nearly 4 years of blogging at other blogs that I wouldn’t be happy until it was just right. It took probably 4 weeks to find the perfect one and then it was all systems go.
I put my heart and soul into this project, making it the brightest spark of even the toughest day. I’ve written 110 posts for this blog in it’s nearly 10 months, and have yet to miss a planned day. It’s already beginning to give me opportunities I could only have dreamed of and it’s also giving me the confidence to chase my dreams outside of the blog too.
I think that sometimes you’re meant to do crazy things like pack up your life and move half way across the world with just one suitcase, a carry on and a handbag so that you can finally see exactly where you’re meant to be.
This life isn’t an easy one, and there’s so much of this roller coaster left to travel before it flattens out a bit, but my heart gets lighter every week because even if my goals still feel 1000 miles away, I’m two steps closer than yesterday. So if you’re looking for me, I’m probably here working on the blog or out for a run or maybe even buying supplies for another mini makeover. I’m happier today than I was this time last year and most likely 1000 times happier than the year before.
It’s been an adventure, but over all, a good one. Here’s to the next adventure!
P.S. If you’ve been with me for any part of the last 12 months, new or old, thank you so much. Your support means the world to me. x
P.P.S. Northern Hemisphere Spring is out today, you can get your copy here. Yay!