So as you saw in Part One, I have a new dream of moving onto a community in the rainforest, 20 minutes from my current cute Australian town.
But I was struggling with anxiety.
‘What’s underneath it all?’ the therapist asked me. ‘You sound informed, supported, capable, ready- what’s going on? What are you scared of?’
I sat, twisting the sodden tissue, cursing my sensitive stomach while I dug down through the layers…
And came face to face with a desperate fear of failure.
It just seemed too good to be true, and I couldn’t accept it.
I couldn’t believe that after a year of fruitless searching for a rural property, & listening to my growing yearning for a tree change + a sense of community, it had actually fallen into my lap via word of mouth, perfect timing, and feasible financial gymnastics.
I couldn’t delight in it.
I had to worry about the details, and foresee as many problems as possible. It almost felt like my duty to do so, even though it didn’t make sense here and now.
And there I found my clue: it was an old habit. An ancient one perhaps, not even mine?
I remembered how many times we’d moved as children, every 6 months sometimes, depending on the tourist season and how easily Mum could find an affordable rental.
She never owned her own home when I lived with her.
I had no positive model inside me for being a brave empty nester, taking on the next chapter of my life with confidence and courage.
To be honest, I can’t even remember what Mum did after I left home at 19- as I said, I just fled to Australia and got on with a whole new way of being…
But I remain bad at ‘transitions’. I’ve travelled a lot, for work and pleasure, and still get quite nervous en route to airport or train. I feel a sigh of relief as soon as I settle into even the dingiest of motel rooms or Airbnbs; I just like to know I have my ‘home’, however temporary.
As my lovely readers have already pointed out, a massive upheaval like moving house is guaranteed to bring a large amount of anxiety and stress. I’m no exception of course.
Still, I was adding to my discomfort by fretting about whether I deserved such an amazing opportunity, despite clear, factual evidence to the contrary.
I was sabotaging myself: worrying that I couldn’t cope with the change of lifestyle, such as the lush tropical garden or the distance from town, or feeling isolated from friends (who are always just a phone call or blog post away). That I didn’t deserve a successful new chapter focussed just on ME, after 20 years of parenting ’19’. That I was too old/inexperienced/lazy to deal with life in the forest.
Yes, I sank the arrows in deep.
But after I stopped crying, and being a bit pathetic to be honest, in light of my privilege, I understood that I’m in a new place, like standing on a bridge between the known and the unknown, and it will work best if I’m kind to myself, and have a little faith.
So that’s what I’m currently trying to do.
Any other tips?
In gratitude for support during transitions, G xO