When you get caught up in the day-to-day of life; paying bills, household chores, poohy nappies, (feel free to fill in the blanks) _____________ and __________, it is quite easy to forget to take a look around you. To look at what you have achieved in life, from the roof over your head to the beautiful people who fill your world. To have a good look at how you got to where you are now. I don’t know what prompted it, but today I took a look around my life. I think it may have been seeing my ten month old little man confidently take his first steps across the living room. He has been stepping about, here and there, for a while now but today the look on his face whilst taking these new strong steps, was so heartwarmingly wonderful that I forgot to breathe for a few seconds. The pride in seeing him reach this milestone is certainly an amazing thing but in stepping further away from this picture, I got to see my life in a way that I haven’t looked at it in a while. The life pre-baby, pre-dogs, pre-Spain, pre-freedom.
Ten years ago I was a BBC journalist, who thought nothing of spending 150 pounds on clothes during a lunch break, making a Pret a Manger prawn and avocado sandwich a pretty damn expensive buy. I loved my career, the money it gave me, the opportunities it threw at me, the places it took me. It was what I had worked hard to achieve. But I didn’t love it as much as some of my colleagues and friends. Hence, why many of them are now on the tv with soaring careers and I am not. I was living the best of the London life that I could, in between the long working hours but I always had the feeling that there had to be something more to my life. Luckily, it all made sense when I met Soobs (also a product of the BBC) and we discovered that we both had the same dilemma.
Six months later we were in Thailand. Just on holiday but enough of a holiday to make our minds up and commit ourselves to our goal of being free. Free from what, I hear you ask? Who knows exactly? I guess the resounding themes were not wanting to be trapped in the London lifestyle that no longer appealed to us, not wanting to work for a big corporation and having the freedom to have more quality of life, and more of a say over what we did with our day-to-day existence.
A few month later (we couldn’t wait any longer), we found ourselves in Mexico, physically and metaphorically. We started from scratch. We lived like Mexicans, married like Mexicans, worked hard like Mexicans and ate and drank like them too. We finally, for a first time in a long time felt like we were the ones defining our lives and writing our own rules – it felt fantastic. Financially, we did not have a penny to our names; those amazing BBC salaries, were so well spent before we’d even left England, that we arrived in Mexico with only enough money to get us through the first two months. We stayed in Mexico for nearly three years.
I will not lie though. Change is frightening. It’s exhilarating, exciting, harrowing, wonderful and sometimes frustrating, but still all of these things were not enough to put us off or stop us in our tracks. Fear and lack of money, although interesting elements to throw into the mix, are still not good enough reasons not to follow a dream. In fact they can be the best reasons to kick start a new life!
Our time in Mexico was the conduit we needed to channel us to where we needed to be emotionally and help us with our next step, which was to re-home ourselves, resettle ourselves and re-establish ourselves on our own terms – which is how we then arrived in Spain. And so in seeing my ten month old taking his first steps, in the lovely, cozy home that we have built around him, with our three dogs following his every move, it served to remind me that life always sorts itself out eventually and that following one dream, can quite often lead you onto the next and the next. So, whether your dream is a life-changing one or simply a dream to undertake a new hobby, learn a new language, change your career, (who knows, these could be life-changing too?) stop dreaming about it and go for it.
And so to end with some wise words that are not my own.
‘Good things happen to those who don’t sit around waiting.’
So what are you waiting for?