Wednesday, 10 August 2011

Tryin' hard not to smile though I feel bad

In typical "having an early bed time" tradition, I have been unable to fall asleep for two and a half hours. So I am now back upright, the lights are on, a Harry Potter audiobook is still playing on the iPod (my usual way to encourage the company of Morpheus), and I thought that some written introspection that I can inflict on the general public might help me to fall asleep. So, here we go.

It has been one week (get the title now?  ) since my husband-to-be left the country after what were two blissful months together. I have, as per the blog post on that day, fallen apart a bit and been experiencing a type of loneliness I'd not known before then. As I have already waxed lyrical about how much I miss Ben, I shan't focus on that now as this is really supposed to be a blog about emigrating, even if the reason for emigrating is the one great love that is my wonderful fiancĂ©.

As much as it pains me to be apart from him, I am trying to use the weeks on this side of the pond to tie up loose ends and to enjoy the lovely people I have here on home soil before I leave for a significant, and as yet undefined, period of time.  Not working at the moment, although this would have always been the case being in the education sector as I was, is no doubt adding to the sense of restlessness I feel and, again, my organised, pre-planning nature has worked against me in that there is actually very little final preparation to do before the interview and actual move. 

So, what has been happening? Well, I am happy. Oddly so, considering the circumstances. Dad commented yesterday that it was good to see me like this - happy in a long term way - and it made me see that I really am, deeply happy (is that possible?!). I am so very excited about the move, about the main reason for it (movie-worthy, vomit-inducing, wonderful love); the opportunities that NC and my career leap to photography will hopefully afford (with a bit of luck and a lot of hard work, which I am looking forward to immensely) and the sense of adventure, security, exhilaration and contentedness the entire journey seems to be inspiring me with. And in actual fact, a lot has happened this week. I have started to learn to use a Nikon D3 (a project I want to complete to a point of feeling confident in picking one up in future and to achieve that before leaving for the States, to widen my photography repertoire - if only with hardware). I have read one book, 'Up A Tree in the Park at Night with a Hedgehog', and have started a second, 'We Need to Talk About Kevin'. I have started a proper diet/exercise routine and lost 3lbs so far this week. I have sold my car. I've updated my Google+ and LinkedIn profiles to include my new employment status as a "real" photographer, and a link to this blog too, as I think it's going to make up a significant part of my emigration experience, which will in turn no doubt influence my photography. I have been out on a photo mission with my old friend Steve to help him learn how to use his first D-SLR. I've almost finished collating and editing the My Other Limb posts for July's batch of photos, which means I can move on and continue with those from August's very soon. I have met a new friend, Martha, and together we set a new record at my local cafĂ© for longest continuous chat over morning coffee/lunch/the whole afternoon. I have been on walks and bike rides. I have ordered a few clip-seal plastic boxes to pack the life I leave behind into, which will be filled by the end of the week. I have had time to talk to Ben daily via Skype and WhatsApp (a Godsend to anyone with a partner or close friend in another country; I cannot recommend it highly enough) and to spend time with my parents yesterday and today. I have plans for the rest of the week that involve learning, packing or hanging out with friends (and sometimes a combination of those three). I am very happy. And very, very lucky. 

The above may seem like a self-congratulatory, smug list of very basic accomplishments, I suppose, and for that, I guess, once upon a time I might have apologised. But I really am enjoying these little things. And yes, they may not have taken a huge amount of change or energy on my part but they are helping me to enjoy the time I have to spend away from Ben, and reminding me to appreciate and treasure it too. On top of not apologising for being a bit simple and apparently easily pleased (!), I'd also go so far as to say a list like this might help anyone else going through a similar situation (even if you are able to be distracted by a job); if you are waiting for documents to process at the Embassy or similar, this could have a positive effect on your perception of progress. Note down even small achievements and take enjoyment from things that might, without deliberately paying attention to them, go unnoticed despite being reasons to smile.

Writing this doesn't appear to have tired me out any but hopefully it's either engaged any readers, or perhaps helped them with their own insomnia. I'm all about value.


Simple things. 

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