Tuesday, 31 December 2013

Goodbye 2013.

I have one question - where has this year gone?! 

Despite the fact 2013 seems to have whizzed by, ALOT has changed since I was saying goodbye to 2012 - I am a completely different person to the girl who begun 2012 AND I'm now living in Australia.


As you all know, 2012 wasn't a great year for me and that left me entering 2013 feeling miserable, confused and a shy, anxious person that had completely lost direction in life. I had struggled on for a few months, feeling alone and suffering with depression (something I'm not afraid to admit) and life was very hard for me. Then, something clicked. I thought 'I'm in my twenties, I spend more time worrying than enjoying life, I'm not happy. Why am I doing this?' The girls were planning their post-university travels to Asia and I thought 'I could do that too!' 

The more and more I thought about it, the more I convinced myself it was good idea and I had my family and closest friends backing me the whole way as they were obviously aware of my current psychological state. So, that was that, I decided to go travelling in September 2013.

Cutting a long story short, my living situation was getting near rock bottom and, unfortunately, didn't resolve itself as amicably as it should have (myself being partly to blame - I was hurting and I needed to get out) so I closed the door on that part of my life, spent a month living with friends before moving back in with my parents. By the time I had got home, I was kicking my anxieties butt and my head was much clearer and healthier. Moving back in with my parents was probably the best decision I had made for myself in years - I felt relaxed, stable and wanted - three things I hadn't felt for a while. Without them, I wouldn't be where I am right now and I will never be able to thank them enough for how incredible they both are.

I continued working full time, commuting an hour+ each way every day for three or four months, reminding myself the reason I was doing this was to see the world.

From April, life was pretty darn good. I turned 22, had one of the best birthdays I've ever had - afternoon tea with my closest friends and parents, we all went to see the Rocky Horror Show and I had a lovely family meal on the actual day. May-August were full of weekend plans - tramlines, birthdays, nights out, day trips, weekends away, new friends, reconnecting with old friends I had stupidly lost contact with and Notting Hill Carnival (one of my favourite days of the year!)

Things felt good again and I felt like I had really turned a corner. 2013 has been a huge learning curve for me - one I can't explain to anybody. I have learned a lot about myself, what I want, what I don't want, what makes me happy and that you only get one life to embrace the things you want to do.


From September-November, you will know I travelled Asia; Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam, Bali (via a day in Singapore), Lombok and the Gili Islands. I was lucky enough to go with my three best friends and have now found a great friend in Nadia as well. I could not have wished to go away with a better group of people. In November I flew to Australia - for 12 months on a working holiday visa.



We arrived in Perth and stayed with Nadia's uncle for a couple of weeks before heading to a Melbourne to find work and return to a more normal, non-travelling life. This hasn't been an easy adjustment; homesickness has been hard to deal with and despite knowing I do not want to fly home, I miss my family and friends terribly. However, it has meant I can meet up with family friends, Jackie and Chris, that live in Melbourne. I hadn't seen them for nearly 11 years and it has been fantastic to get to spend time with them and their children. 

I spent Christmas and the days that follow at their home in Mt Eliza and had the best time. Not only did I have a lovely Christmas and New Year but I also had the pleasure of meeting somebody; somebody that's really brought out my confidence again and I'm truly grateful for that. That person was unexpected, but aren't all the best surprises.

On Sunday, I flew to Sydney to be reunited with my lovely chum Hannah. Nikki arrived the following day and we intend to have a fabulous night for New Year, no matter what we do.

Despite 2013 starting off as a turbulent year, I've turned it around all by myself (obviously with the help and advice of friends and family); but this is the first year in my life I feel like I've had a sense of independence. I feel like I'm growing up and able to make rational decisions through learning more about myself. I've met people and experienced things that have altered the way I think and realised, life is too bloody short - and having no plan isn't always the worst thing in the world. I'm in Australia with no idea what's next, but that's exciting, not scary. The world is my oyster!

I am so proud of myself, and nobody can take that away for me. But I have to say, without my parents, I would not have made it this far. I was a shell of a person last year and they will have no idea how much they have helped me. I feel like 2014 is starting off well already and am very excited to see what it holds for me.

So cheers and I wish you all the health and happiness in the world.


Happy 2014 from Sydney!

xo

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