You’re living your best life
So many people comment this on my social media. The reason why? It is because in the last 9 months, I have been selfish.
If you have been following my blog you might have read My Quarter Life Crisis. Basically, at the start of 2018 I had a quarter-life crisis where a realized that I wasn’t following my dreams and compromising parts of my own identity for others. So I left an 8 year relationship, saved up, sold my beautiful car, packed my bags and bought a one-way ticket to Manila.
I started with 15K (NZD), rented myself a condo, started chasing my dreams and spent a lot of time reflection on what I wanted in life, the kind of person that I wanted to share it with and what my potential was.
One of the things I really wanted to find, was loneliness. I wanted to see what it felt to be lonely. In my 9 months of living abroad and travelling, I have yet to feel it. I know why. It is because I needed a break.
My brothers and I, have always been extremely independent. We didn’t grow up with much, so making our own way was ingrained in us. I have always tried my best to look after myself so that I wouldn’t be a burden to anyone else. I’ve always struggled to ask for help because I didn’t want my negative energy affect others. From a very young age, money has always been on my mind. Money to buy my own home one day, money I needed to buy Christmas presents for people, back up money in case my car breaks down and lending money to people. I would never ask for money or anything. I felt too ashamed to.
I started working when I was 8 years old, every Saturday. I worked at a Livestock Auction with my dad. I was paid $2.50 and a sandwich for a day of filing and photocopying. As I grew older and my brother left (he was 12 and wanted to play rugby) and I took his job as a runner and drafter. I would draft sheep, pigs and calves into pens. I took on tagging the calves. Rain or sun, it didn’t matter. I was very good at my job. Boys would come in and try to compete with me, to realized that they weren’t resilient enough. I had so many clients trying to poach me to work on their farms. I did take up a semester break job at a horse stud for 4 years to help pay for university. However, I found a passion for film, television, drama and learning. I wanted more.
I ended up staying in an education system and environments filled with people for most of my life. From kinder garden to primary school to high school to university to teachers college back to high school. In my first year of teaching, I couldn’t let go of my Saturday job and was working full-time with no free Saturdays. I ran myself into the ground. I left my Saturday job after 14 years because I needed to for my physical and mental health.
The problem was, that I was stuck in the rat race from such a young age to my mid-twenties. I missed out on some many normal childhood/adolescent/young adult things. Always on the move, always on the go, always around people, always going out of the way to make people like me, always putting others needs before my own. Racing, racing. On top of that, I was in a relationship where I was always in fight or flight mode. Always giving more than what I was getting. Forgiving things I should have never forgiven.
I love to connect with people. I love people and their stories. I had gotten into a pattern of over-extending myself to help others. It is not necessarily a bad thing but some people would take advantage of my kindness. I will always love being around people but I needed a chance to find myself.
In the last 9 months, I have been selfish. Travelling and socializing a bit more than I should have. Actually enjoying life and finding out who I am and what I want. I am not recommending that you quit your job and jump on a plane. What I am recommending is taking some time to get to know who you are. Everyday I keep surprising myself with things I am able to do alone. This past 9 months has been so beneficial to my personal growth. I have been extremely lucky with the people I have meet who have share experiences with me. For my family and friends, supporting me and understanding my need for an escape. For my students, who I left. I think about you everyday and I hope you understand.
I will be returning to the rat race soon but I have a new outlook, higher standards and a better understanding of what I want.