After my life changing, or not so life changing as it turned out, news last week I very quickly relaxed back into the status quo. I have to say that I was extremely happy that now the choice was made, I could focus forward and not linger on the what ifs of the situation. One thing that became very apparent, during this period of uncertainty, was how people handled this scenario completely differently. Was this usual? Did I handle this the best way that I could? I pondered that latter for some time, I came to the conclusion that yes, there were a couple of inner freak outs towards the end, but on the whole I was the poster girl for facing it head on.
Ok I am far from perfect, but the way I approached this moment, was so far from away from how I went into our first expat experience. Was I ready to move to Prague and throw myself into a life abroad, having never done it before? Nope! Let’s face it I was completely winging it from day one and had no idea what would unfold, whether I would even like this life, let alone crave it 8 years on.
The changes that have happened over that time frame, have shaped me into someone able to handle the turbulent last few months. I was less stressed at times than my own family back home, who couldn’t relax not knowing what country I would be living in. But I like so many expats just rolled with it. Was it easy? Not all the time, but moving is what our nomadic life is all about, so go with the flow.
People around me in the land of sand, often comment on my attitude. I’m not saying I have an attitude and I sass about, I mean that I barely get rattled about anything. In fact I can’t remember the last time I was down or upset about anything and to be honest those moments are never about my life, my location or an incident, it’s purely emotionally driven about people not places. There are desert girls and island girls that both recoil when I call Kuwait my home, but it is. I’m not going to pretend it isn’t.
Home isn’t a place on a map, it’s not a physical dwelling, to me it’s a feeling.
A place you feel loved, relaxed, content, with familiarity and comfort. This for me is Kuwait. I’m not going to lie and say it’s all perfect, because nowhere is, and I pride myself that this blog is a true reflection of my experiences. Although this is my experience, I am very aware this differs amongst the expat community depending who you talk to. However, am very happy to be here and I am not afraid to share that feeling. There are many in my inner desert circle that relish in my positivity, see it as a way to lift themselves up, a collective happy place, creating each other’s experiences not existence. It’s the group dynamic of good vibes that helps us all survive. as one desert girl put it,
Pulling up our superhero positivity pants and letting that feeling fly you all the way to Hawaii,
Now, for some my happy clappy over optimistic view of life can be annoying. I can see that they struggle to share my enthusiasm for the sand pit. Do I know it can be hard? Sure. Am I aware that there are frustrating things, that make your whisper FFS almost daily? Sure. But I chose not to let that drag me into a place of darkness, of resentment, losing sight of why I am here. Maybe I’m naive, maybe I’m too detached 8 years down the expat line, but I don’t see why you wouldn’t embrace it and try to view it for what it is.
I know this place doesn’t even compare to Jersey. My island haven is beautiful. The contrast of lush green farmland, white sand beaches, coastal ruggedness, little air pollution to an underdeveloped, dusty, can be dirty, dry acrid landscape couldn’t be further apart. But whilst I see Jersey as beautiful, a place where my loved ones are, a place that created incredible childhood memories and gave me the love of my life, it’s also the place I chose to leave.
The fact I made that decision, should tell you that yes it will always be home home, but it couldn’t give us what we wanted, needed or desired. So that being said, I am sure there are many expats that entered this life under similar circumstances, so how can you not grab what’s in front of you with both hands? I don’t get it. I left it for a reason, so why pine after somewhere that ultimately was unfulfilling? Don’t get me wrong I love to go back, in fact I appreciate it much more now than I ever did and that’s the upside of being away, my view is no longer tainted. I see it for what it is, what it gave me, it’s not going anywhere but it’s the enveloping arms of my mum that pulls me back not an old life.
As I head off to my 4 weeks of Jersey appreciation, spending time with my family, friends and doing all my favourite island things, I will enjoy it. The difference is I won’t be trying to replicate what once was. I can’t. I am not the same. It’s not my forever home, just like Kuwait won’t be (of course I have no bloody idea where that will be but that’s for another day!) What I do know, is that I will view every step in between island and desert with clarity, enjoying every moment, I may even wobble from time to time but all the way I’ll wearing my superpower positivity pants!