Looking on the bright side

Yes, we still have a tonne of things to do. Our days are spent juggling childcare duties with packing boxes, trips to the tip, packaging and posting eBay sales, trips to the charity shop (the local Barnados looks more like our house every day!) and watching movies – lots of U-rated, child-friendly movies late in the afternoon when we’re all burnt out and need some downtime before dinner. It’s quite a long way from the relaxing mat leave I had last time around when my days were filled with baby-oriented classes, leisurely lunches and trips to local towns punctuated with coffee and cake.

Then there’s the sleepless night fog. Not every day; baby #2 turns out to be a sleeper – yay! But that doesn’t mean we’re not knackered most days, which has led to some short-temperedness all round.

Then there’s the worry and stress of moving, made considerably by worse by the uncertainties posed post-Brexit (assuming it happens, at some point). On this front we’re winding each other up with our different attitudes. On my side, I can’t face any of the worry and haven’t got the energy to worry about ifs, buts, and maybes, so I’m focussing on the positives. James, on the other hand, is seeing darkness and danger wherever he looks, which makes for some tricky discussions. Typically, he shares his pessimistic vision with me and I respond by firing up my optimism shield. The result being that he goes away from our conversations in a grump because I don’t want to listen/talk/take on board his concerns and I go away feeling really miserable and pretty drained because he’s bringing me down. Then we had a talk so now James has agreed to let it go and relax a little. This is supposed to be a big adventure and focussing on everything that can go wrong is making me want to sack it all off and get a boring corporate job again. Except that’s the total opposite of what I want to do and what he wants for us all.

What’s bonkers about this is that he was the one who sowed the seed of this dream, this change, and I was always the one who thought it was a big risk and was uncertain about it. Then, as far as I’m concerned, the planets aligned. I was faced with losing my very steady corporate job at the same time as baby #2 was due to arrive. Now feels like the right time and it really seems to me that everything is falling into place. Sure, we may have to make compromises and be open to new ideas and opportunities but that’s part of the fun of making such a huge change, otherwise, why bother? Let’s just stay here and keep everything the same? Or we can just get out there, embrace all the uncertainty, and do it. Looking on the bright side, we’re incredibly lucky to have this opportunity at all and that’s what I keep reminding him. Every day we speak to people who say they would love to do what we’re doing and, for all the different reasons in the world, aren’t and/or can’t. But we are – so I think we owe it to everyone who’s ever thought of throwing it all in and starting up somewhere new and unknown to do it as joyfully as we can. Of course it’s risky, of course Brexit has made it all the more risky (thanks Mum), but we’re doing it anyway. Worst case we get a few years somewhere sunny, learn another language, make some new friends, then are forced back to the grind. Worth a punt, I say!

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