From a distance, the fields look very green. Lush. As you slowly approach, the verdant green starts to fade, and when you are at the fence, it looks as though the grass isn’t green on either side. Typical.
Life has a way of changing on you when your back is turned. Your thoughts and attitudes change with the passing of the years, without you realising what profound effect they are having on your psyche. What looked a good idea a few years ago, looks less so now. The things you enjoyed become less appealing. When did this happen? It’s as though we slept through the changing of the guard. As we silently passed the dark hours, somebody came into the living room of our heads and rearranged the furniture. And when you wake up, it takes a while to notice. What is different?
That is how it happens. Silently. Stealthily. Before you know where you are, all the angst of youth seems a distant memory and you are happy with yourself. Happy in yourself. Just happy. Since reaching 40 I have never felt more comfortable with being me. Just like that. Without consciously thinking about it. Without making any changes. Without suffering a midlife crisis. I still don’t have a red Porsche, a Harley Davidson, a Rolex (yet) or a Playboy bunny girl as a live in lover, and yet, I’m happy.
I would even go as far as saying that I feel quite settled. Yeah, you heard that right. Settled. My friendships have reached a level of maturity whereby the friends I have are the friends I want to have. And they are great friendships. The times we have together leave me with lasting memories and a smile when I reminisce about them.
And yet, shortly, I’m leaving all this behind. Packing up the great home I have. Leaving the work I’m doing, after finally, after all these years, starting to work for myself as a freelance project manager. And leaving family and friends behind to lift and shift it all 11000 miles away, to the land down under.
Why? It’s not just for the Vegemite sandwiches and pints of Fosters. It’s because I’ve harboured this dream for a very, very long time. To live in Australia. The eight visits there haven’t diminished, or diluted this dream. I’m very excited to go and start a new challenge. I thrive on change and challenging the status quo. But, it has to be said, when I set out on this journey, over 2 years ago, I wasn’t in the same place, mentally. The metaphorical furniture was upturned, I wasn’t settled and did indeed suffer the odd pangs of angst. So, back then, the grass did in fact look so much greener.
Like I said, maybe Alanis was right, it is a little bit ironic, don't you think?