I am in a very weird place. There is a bit of calm happening and I’ve taken this calm space to sit down and consider the project so far and the project in the future. With Exeter, Dudley and Nebraska behind me, with Edinburgh current then upcoming Newcastle, I am now living in the middle of this huge adventure. I see what I’ve done. I see what I’m about to do. It’s exciting, brilliant and also a little bit sad. Is Newcastle to be the end? Hopefully, no.
How did this project begin? Well, that question has been answered a zillion times, but perhaps I haven’t really addressed why I needed to do this. After all, we have lots of ideas throughout a day: Maybe I’ll start going to that zumba class, Perhaps I’ll eat fruit more often, Think I’ll get my tyres rotated, Today I will start writing that book, I really ought to start a book/film/knitting/hoovering club. They flit in. They flit out. What is it that makes you grab onto an idea and own it? What makes you realise that to give it up, to let it slip through your attention span – going hardly noticed – would be a detriment to your life.
When this project came to mind, I was going through a significant transition. Most of my life has been a significant transition – a transition from the states to Redhill to Crawley to Newcastle to Edinburgh from job to job to job from hoping to start growing a family to realising that’s just not in the cards for me. Nearly nine years of transition. All of those times of stopping then starting over with a new plan.
When the idea for this project came to mind, I had to hold onto it and make it happen as there just seemed to be no other option. It was something I had a certain amount of control over. If I failed at this, it would be my fault and my fault only. If I made it happen, then that would be my success. The project was monumental and I needed to prove to myself that I could at least succeed at this. I may have failed to put down roots or carry a job for more than 2 years, to have children, but this would prove to myself that if I believed in it enough, I could make it happen. And it’s happened. It is happening. And I do feel that I have wrestled this beast to the ground and shown it whose boss. Life, that is.
What does success for this look like and how do I know I’ve achieved it? To be honest, if I had only gotten as far as Exeter, I would have felt that this was a success. I finished the work on time. I’ve learned things. My eyes have been wide open and I have met so many interesting people along the way. My life feels fuller and richer. Because I took a chance.
Which was scary.
But I did it, anyway.