Dear 2006 Me,
You’re about to move to England. Big step but it feels right and you will have the right mix of apprehensiveness and excitement. You don’t realise it yet but this is a pivotal point of your life.
At this point your thinking you’ll be away for at least 2 maybe 5 years as that’s when your visa runs out and by then you’ll be 28 and ready to come home.
This is not the case- 10 years in and you’ll still not be sure when or if you’ll move back.
When you step on the plane you’ll be thinking of the adventures your going to have, the people you’ll meet, the countries you’ll go to and the new life you’ll have. What you won’t be thinking about is what you’ll end up missing out on at home while your away and rightly so in your mind your only going for a couple of years. Not much will happen in that time. Although it’s glaringly obvious, you forget life will go on even if your not there.
You’ll go home almost every year and funnily enough more times than your sister but you can’t be there for every occasion. When your sister gets married, your best friend has a baby, a family member suddenly passes away you’ll be there and reminding yourself that the worlds not that big. But the longer you’re away the more things you start to not be able to be there for like when your grandad is ill and needs to move into a home and your grandma needs support, when your family get together to celebrate anniversaries, significant birthdays, random off the cuff weekend catch ups, meeting friends new partners, engagement parties and town celebrations.
A few weeks ago it was Dad’s 60th birthday and you won’t be there for the party. Yes you saw him a month earlier on an amazing family holiday and celebrated with everyone then but you miss out on being there now. You’ll facetime (FaceTime is amazing just you wait) and talk to everyone and see how much fun they are having together and they will laugh at how rugged up your are when it’s so warm there and then you’ll hang up and smile but that smile will fade into tears. Tears of sadness that your not there, guilt that your not there and longing as you wish to be there and not in your lounge getting ready to put the washing away.
Im not writing this to you to stop you from going or to create any further guilt as you need to go. You need to live your life. But you need to know these things as your going to have to be strong. Really strong. No one will ever tell you about this side of living away (only all the practical points of living abroad) and you do learn how to cope with it even if at times you won’t feel like you can.
You need to make sure you enjoy every moment and every new thing you see as this will shape you and make you into the person you are meant to be. As much as you’re longing to be at home with everyone they will be looking at your Facebook, text messages, Instagram and feeling envious that your having a weekend in Paris or that your off on another girly holiday to somewhere fabulous in Europe. They’ll want to be there for you when you have a bad day, hospital appointments, celebrate the promotion you got or even take you out for dinner when you get engaged (yes you get engaged!). This is just the way it is.
It might sound all doom and gloom but it’s not. It’s amazing – you have so many friends who are your extended family, you fall in love, you see things you never thought you would, you have a great job, mum comes to celebrate your 30th, you even get a pet rabbit and most importantly you have the most amazing family that are there for you regardless of the miles or oceans between.
Home is where the heart is and your fortunate enough to have your heart on both sides of the world.
Be strong and enjoy!
oh and look out for a guy that gives you a jar of vegemite on your first date. He’s a keeper and will always make you smile when your missing home