Friday, 11 July 2014

When life takes us on unexpected journeys

There are those little or big things you wish for, every time before bed, or every time you wake up, or simply when you see them happening to other people. You might wish for a passionate love, great job or a friend (the cool mother from the baby class, who speaks to everyone, knows everything and has remembered your baby’s name straight away!)... The list is long. What about when your wish suddenly comes true, but it’s nothing that you have expected and actually, disappoints you? Sadly, it can be a true story.

Starting this topic was inspired by a small, specific event, but thinking deeper and looking back in the past, my experience with fulfilled wishes, which hasn’t been what I thought they will be, is much bigger. To begin with, going to study at a university abroad, 4 years ago, was one of the first and very big dreams that came true. Year before starting university, still finishing high school, going to England to study and live on my own was something I was dreaming for, night and day, something I was looking very much forward to.

But, once I stepped out of the plane, crossed the door of my accommodation and started “living the dream” my pink glasses started to get darker and darker with every passing day, week, and month. The time was passing fast, but instead of enjoying the experience, I was finding myself disappointed, sad and most of all-homesick. The taste of new life wasn’t missing, exciting things were happening all the time, opportunities and meeting new people were behind every corner, but somehow I lost my purpose, my path, I forgot why I came and where I was going to. 

Life before university was organized, secure, fulfilling. I have never missed love and support from my family, encouragement and inspiration to follow my dreams, but my desire for independence, adventures and discovering life beyond the known, was pushing me in the direction to study abroad. If you ask me why I wanted to study in the UK in the first place, I probably won’t be able to give a specific answer; I just knew I belonged there, that this is my path.

My path turned out to be a very bumpy one from the very beginning. Living the dream, I had to learn the hard way how to live without my family, how to be self-sufficient, and how to deal with the not so pretty sides of life. Even though surrounded by many new and interesting people, I couldn’t help, but feel lonely. Even though journalism was something I knew I’d love and I knew I have a natural ability to do, I slowly started hating it with every other assignment I was receiving.

Suddenly my “calling”, became a burden. I felt insecure participating in class; I thought of my accent as the worst possible thing in the room where I was the only foreigner and the language barrier turned to be a barrier between me and the world.  I wasn’t inspired or motivated. I had to learn how to bring myself up without the soothing words of my loved ones; I had to learn how to be my own inspiration and motivation.

Not seeing my family for longer and longer periods of time was a huge challenge. I wasn’t spending holidays at home, but was staying abroad, to work, to move places, to keep going… I lost friends during these years, we couldn’t see each other, we lost touch, we were just living different lifes. It wasn’t because I didn’t miss them and the way things used to be, I don’t know if they ever knew that, but this is one of life’s tests.

Life taught me many things, since he become my only teacher. I learnt how to love, how not to give up, how to give chances and not to be afraid to lose or be hurt. My parent’s raised me and gave me wings to fly, but the past 4 years taught me how to live. During this time, there were many moments I’ve felt like I am in a deadlock and there is no moving forward. I’ve felt trapped, abandoned, hurt, misunderstood… But I kept on going, searching, trying, and moving forward.

Four years later I found my path again. I found, by accident, the love, support and understanding I have always wished for.  I am holding my little boy in my arms and I see my inspiration, my motivation, and my purpose. I know I am moving in the right direction and know that every step I take, even though the road isn’t smooth and easy, is worth it.

Even now, after I realize that the perfect scenarios in our head, very rarely prove to work in reality, I still have those big or small wishes, which I believe will bring me happiness, (well, the “cool” mother didn’t turn to be that cool in the end…) But how are we going to get to know what we really want and need if we don’t get to live our “dreams”? 

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