No one thing is going to fix everything
I think that’s pretty obvious. But having said that…..I found going away, to America (for work, admittedly – so I was working and didn’t have to pay) was brilliantly helpful. A holiday (actually a work trip) was as good as a change.
I tried to think about why this helped and these are…
My top three reasons:
- Exciting things to look at and discover– continuing to learn helps me to keep realising life is long and there are still brilliant things to discover. In New York I was massively excited to discover the wonderful High Line – a beautiful disused train line in Manhattan, landscaped with lovely plants.
- Lends perspective – there are a lot of people in the world, doing lots of things and with lots of stories. This helped me to realise that this is just one chapter of my life that I will get through. And that everyone is living their story too.
- Distracts you from short term problems – although not a permanent solution….it’s tiring to feel like life is extremely heavyweight all the time. Everyone needs a break – even if it’s a break from grieving.
Realising travelling was helpful allowed me to apply lessons learned to everyday life. I started to make more of a conscious effort to change my routines and habits where I felt they needed to be shaken up, whether that included discovering new areas of London or investigating new places to discover.
Opening up new opportunities
Discovering new things, at a time when some parts of your life are drawing to a close, is epic. This can be a really exciting experience. So many things have happened that I could never have imagined. For example….
- Borrowing a phone from a homeless man in Copenhagen when I arrived drunk, not knowing where to meet my friends who lived there.
- Almost killing a woman by going over the handlebars on my bike and ending up with two black eyes.
- Going to Nicaragua and meeting a bunch of guys who recited Edgar Allen Poe’s ‘The Raven’ to each other on an island that had just witnessed a brutal attack, after which noone had left the island.
- Meeting Carolina, who was born on the exact same day as me, in the South Bank Centre on a bench.
- Having 43 Airbnb guests in less than a year.
- Sitting in an STD clinic wondering what I might have picked up from my husband.
- Living with flatmate Graeme, who was also getting divorced and annoying him by performing the songs from Beetlejuice.
- Getting locked out of my house by a Chinese couple and having to stay in a hotel less than 100 metres from my house, when I came back at 3am after a sex toy tradeshow in Hannover
- Working in a vibrator company
- Meeting Rocco Siffredi with Marion and having my picture taken with him