I keep trying to write about what a brilliant time I’m having with Amarah (which I totally am – I LOVE this girl!) but I can’t get past the fact that I’m going to be home in nine days.
I just did this ‘Date Duration’ calculator thing that I found on Google, and altogether I will have been gone for two hundred and twenty seven days.
That’s a pretty fair trip, I reckon.
Two hundred and eighteen lived in a mind blowing way, and it will all be over in nine.
How do I go back to normal, after all that I have just been through, experienced, learnt?
Is there even such a thing as normal for me?
It’s not a matter of having the ‘travel bug’, or being restless and just wanting to get out and keep adventuring…
It’s that my horizons have been broadened further then I thought possible, that I have lived in totally different cultures, been surrounded by like-minded people for so long, have always had a new adventure waiting for me every day, and here I am facing having to go back to a life where people simply can’t understand.
Sure, they’ll try, but I think that unless someone has gone on a similar upheaval of surroundings and heart then it just isn’t possible to wrap their minds around what I’m feeling.
Since I’ve been gone, my Facebook feed has been filled with stories and pictures of weddings, engagements, babies, schooling achievements, job changes and so on.
Life – for the vast majority of people, it seems – looks like an endless loop of relationships, work, and wanting the weekend to come around to escape it for 48 hours.*
I used to want that: the man, the wedding, the babies. Lunch dates and a steady job that pays well; walks down to the local beach in the summer, reading a good book in front of my fire when it’s colder…
And don’t get me wrong; I definitely look forward to the day all those things fall into place.
But right now, I feel more like myself when I’m on the road, when I only have to keep track of the days so I don’t miss my next flight, bus, or train ride.
I haven’t woken up in the same bed for more than a few weeks at a time since last year; instead of living within the same four walls I have woken up in different hostels, apartments, cities, countries, continents even.
My backpack seems more of a home to me than Stanwell Tops.
As a traveller, I don’t have to wear shoes unless I’m going to a swanky restaurant (doesn’t happen that often unless someone else is shouting!). It takes all of two minutes to choose an outfit – I generally rotate between two/three tops, a flowery dress Jazz helped me pick out, and my Moroccan pants.
I’m not sucked into the never ending cycle of workworkworkworkworkweekendwork or studying for a degree that I might use one day.
But when I get back, will I be?
How long will it take before I too start thinking more about what hours I get next week, instead of where the next train will take me?
Or have I changed so much that I won’t fit in anyway? That even if I were to get a 9-5 job, form a weekly routine and do those things that most people do, I’d just be a fraud?
Looking at it in more detail now, I can see that I’m scared to go home.
I’m scared that I’ve changed so much that what used to be familiar will now be foreign…
And I’m even more scared that on the other hand, I’ll just slip straight back into the daily grind and lose my taste for adventure.
It’s no secret that people who have gone away and come home say how hard it is to readjust, but I guess I just saw it as an exaggeration.
Now that it’s me staring at a return ticket to Australia just next week, I know they’re not lying.
Have I made the most of my time away? How many things should/could I have done differently?
The growth I feel has taken place; changes within my mind and heart – are they even real? Or was it just an illusion based off of my lifestyle that is quickly coming to an end?
Will I be happy when I get home?
How do I find my place standing still, when I’m so used to knowing who I am when I’m flying?
I don’t think ‘butterflies’ adequately describes this.
‘Terrified’ is a lot closer to the truth.
Funny how I need to cling onto God even more tightly now, in coming home, than I did when I first left.
I’m just thankful I’ve got Him to turn to.
*DISCLAIMER: If you fit into any of the categories listed above, please don’t take this personally. I love you dearly, and I’m totally honoured and blessed to be able to see your lives unfold! Just not sure if that’s me yet, is all.