I’ve been home nearly 3 weeks now, and I don’t really know what to tell you. The days are fine, most of them. They go by quickly. I seem to fill them with things, then it’s time to cook dinner and the sun sets again.
And then the ‘what on earth are you going to do with your life’ sense of impending doom comes back. All that energy and excitement that I felt coming home, that feeling that everything was going to be ok, it dissipated that Wednesday after I came home. Vanished. I got sick and the doubts crept in and set up camp in my head and they come back each evening.
For the first time in my life I’m looking at a future beyond 30. It’s not that I didn’t think I’d make it that far, but 27 always felt like such a huge obstacle to overcome that I never really thought ‘long term’. It probably seems ridiculous for anyone who has been there, done that. But it’s true. So now I’m back home and trying to work out which direction to take to make the next 10 years happy ones (for as much as I can be in control of that). I came home to create a happier, healthier future. That bit I know.
I’m back to running, slowly but surely I will pound that pavement until I feel like I can call myself a runner. I will use that time each morning to get out of my own head and just focus on running up that hill that looks like it’s flat until you’re running up it. I will make goals that are just for me and smile when I reach them and remind myself that there’s always tomorrow when I don’t quite make it.
As for work, well I’m really not sure. I don’t want to be a web designer long term. I got burnt out so badly by the end of last year that I couldn’t stand to look at code anymore, and with the time away from the computer, travelling and seeing people I realised just how bad it is for an introvert to work from home on her own ALL THE TIME. I couldn’t believe how much I loved the interaction with other people at Alt. How much people understood my story more when I told it in person. How good it felt to laugh with people and not just into my computer screen.
I know I need to find something that I love to do, that I’m good at, that gets me out of the house. I still want to run my own business, but I want it to be something that I want to do long term, not just something that will bring in the cash short term. It will be creative, because this is at my core. 20something years of drawing, writing and dreaming tell me that this is key. Whilst I love travel – I love that the memories are all mine. I thought about trying my hand at travel writing, but this trip made me realise it’s the joy I get out of travel that I cherish not the writing, and I worry that making it a job would take that away from me. A very selfish thing, I know.
I’m trying to be zen about all this not knowing and let it come to me organically, in the way it always does when things are meant to be, but the tutting and the (well meaning) asking what I’m doing now, are making me doubt myself. Thankfully I came home with a cash buffer, and I have a bit more time time to get my shit together. Sometimes I feel like I should just get in the car and drive until it comes to me, but then I remember that I’m not on my trip anymore and I don’t have a car. So I run when I can, and remind myself that I’m lucky that I had a home to come back to and time up my sleeve and when all else fails, I turn the music up as loud as I can and I sing my lungs out where no one can hear me missing the notes and sounding ridiculous.
It will all work out eventually, I just know it. Hopefully eventually comes soon. x