Healing Isn’t Linear: When Home is No Longer Home

emilygoughInfidelity, Lifestyle (Podcast, Mindset (Podcast), Podcast, Travel (Podcast)

Burning my entire life to the ground in general felt absolutely necessary to my survival, as necessary as breathing.”

Today’s episode is going to be one that is very close to my heart, I’ve had this episode on my radar and in my heart to record for at least 6 months now. Exactly 1 year ago today I burnt my whole life here in Canada to the ground, jumped on a plane and flew to Bali.  Since that day, this city I used to call home in Canada, hasn’t truly felt like home and I get really vulnerable in today’s episode about how that looks, and feels, ESPECIALLY right now during this whole pandemic where I am grounded back here in Canada for an undetermined length of time.

I’m going to be talking about:

  • Why such a drastic move, that seemed crazy to some, was so necessary for my survival.
  • The opportunity it presented for me to build my life and future exactly that way I want to.
  • The idea that the place you call home isn’t a physical location, but a feeling inside of you that you should follow.

This one is straight from my heart to yours.

 

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Look for references from today’s episodes?  Find them all here:

Episode 117: The 9 Year Affair: Lessons in Infidelity

Episode 118: The Dark Side of Social Media: Stalking, Protecting Your Privacy & Mental Health

Episode 133: Stepping Out of the Chaos of Your Life & Allowing Ease with Emma Rose Tait

My 7-Step Framework to launch a successful podcast and exponentially grow your business

 

Are you ready? Get listening right away by clicking the link above, or if you’re more in the mood to read today keep scrolling for the full transcription of today’s episode! Let’s do this!

 

Hey, Hey, welcome back to the Room to Grow Podcast. Emily here and today’s episode is going to be one that is very close to my heart. I’ve had this episode sitting in the back of my head to do for at least six months now, at least, and it just never felt like quite the right time and I’m finally ready to share this. Also, can I just say it’s super weird that sometimes it feels easier to be vulnerable on this podcast than it does to be in real life. Maybe I’ve conditioned myself to share things on this podcast. It’s super weird, you guys, I don’t even understand.

Let’s dive into this a little bit, when home is no longer home. For some context for anyone who isn’t aware of  my story, if you’re new to this podcast, I’m Canadian, and at the moment with the whole pandemic global situation that we’re in, I am in Canada right now and I’m from Hamilton, Ontario originally. I’m staying here at the moment too grounded here, basically, and I have been living in Bali for the last eight months. I just happened to arrive back in Canada literally 24 hours before the global pandemic was called. It was a trip that had already been planned for a couple months anyway to come back to Canada from Bali, but I was only planning on being here for a month or two to attend some events and I had some things scheduled that I needed to be in North America for and then I was going to be going elsewhere. Obviously those plans have gone out the window. For now, I’m grounded here, which is fine. That’s just to give you a little bit of background and then if you want more information as to why I moved to Bali in the first place, you can check out Episode 117, it is all about the nine year affair and why I ended my last relationship with which then just set off a whole series of events where I have turned my entire life upside down. So yes, if you want more information, you can go check out Episode 117 for all the details on that. 

Now that you have the background information for anyone who isn’t aware of all that. I put up a post recently on Instagram and because I consider myself kind of like Bali and Canada based and a lot of my content photos are from Bali as well, I often will still list Bali as the location because that was where the actual photos were taken. Sometimes people get confused a little bit because they’re kind of like, ‘Well, are you in Bali? Are you in Canada? Where are you right now?’.  I had a comment on one of my photos on Instagram recently where somebody was asking, ‘Are you in Canada or are you in Bali right now’. I’m going to get into more in a moment as to why I don’t even like answering those questions on a public forum. I don’t always know who’s behind the account and I tend to prefer to keep a bit of a low profile. I’ll get to that more in a minute, but I happened to have spoken with the person behind this account before, I knew that it was a real human. I had an idea about who they were, so I did answer it. I said, ‘I’m in Hamilton right now’.  I definitely just prefer to maintain some mystery about my world at any given time and keep people guessing because it makes me feel a little bit safer and more protected. If you want more information on that I would recommend checking out Episode 118 all about being stalked and the dark side behind social media. 

 

I promise I’m getting to more of a point. I just need to give you a little bit of backstory so that you have some context as to what I’m going to be talking about today. It is tied in with the whole situation about my former partners’ infidelity. I had found out when all that came out that his former girlfriend, the other woman, had been tracking me to a very unhealthy degree, both online and in person. I have been extremely cautious ever since. Hyper vigilant, I would say, I’m just very aware now of how thin the line is between online and real life. I’ve always taken precautions in the online space to protect myself, but that took things to a whole new level. Now when I am in this city in particular, I am very, very conscious of not posting specifics, not posting where I am at any given time, all of those types of things. I go into a lot more detail in that episode, so go check out Episode 118. I also really talked about the mental health effects that I had to deal with from that whole situation, and how it kind of affected me on a pretty significant level. So go check out that but that is why I tend to prefer a bit of mystery. 

 

Anyway, this person commented and asked where I was, and I said Hamilton, and there’s a hashtag that gets used around here about ‘Hamilton is home’. So #Hamiltonishome, and I didn’t really respond, because I don’t consider Hamilton my home anymore. Then they also said  ‘I’m surprised that I’ve never run into you around here’. I said I prefer to maintain a low profile when I’m here, and that’s extremely accurate. I maintain a very low profile when I’m here. I see my people but it’s all very quiet. I don’t go out a huge amount, I just really prefer not to, and it’s not out of fear. I need to make that part certain that’s not out of fear. That’s sort of an actual just lack of interest. I  prefer to not really do a huge amount out here, I don’t need to have any type of public presence here. It’s not what I’m here for. Even though where I am in the world is not usually terribly relevant. I also 100% understand curiosity because when I’m following somebody online, I don’t know what it is you just kind of like to have an idea where they are, where they are coming from, or whatever. I understand the curiosity, especially as somebody who is traveling a huge amount, people are just intrigued about what places you visited, or where you are at any given moment. The thing is,  this entire situation that I went through here in this city, it’s not that I am so much worried about, you know, that same particular person tracking me it’s much more so that the entire experience has just left me sort of hyper vigilant about how and what I post online and my intense need to meet my privacy when it comes to specifics about where I am and what I’m doing in real time at any given moment. I am also definitely more cautious in this particular city in some ways than anywhere else in the world. Which sounds super weird because as a female who travels alone in the world most of the time, that sounds like an odd statement.

 

Don’t get me wrong, I’m very cautious and in other ways, no matter where I am in the world, and some cities more than others, but here it holds a certain emotional tie for me that I am especially cautious about it. Just as one example, I did an Instagram Live just the other day and I noticed that by accident, there was a street sign that was visible behind me. So I deleted the live. I wouldn’t even post it because I wasn’t willing to risk putting up a video that gave away any indication where I was more specifically within the city, or people getting to know my routine very well. I’m very cautious about that too. I do not post in real time, all of that. I go into a lot of that stuff in Episode 118 as well about ways that you can protect yourself and some things that I am much more aware of now than I was before. My main point here is that this city is no longer my home, and I’m born and bred here. I was born here. I grew up here and I bought a house here. I built a life here. I left for school, for university and stuff, and I had traveled relatively extensively as well, but Hamilton was always my home. That was always where I came back to, but it is no longer my home, and it hasn’t been my home since I got on a plane and left nearly a year ago to go to the other side of the world. I knew when I left, I would never live here again, and not even because of the traumatic memories or because of people I no longer associate with who remain here, but because this entire chapter of my life is simply closed for me, that’s it, it’s closed. I cut the cords to my former life almost entirely and very intentionally. It wasn’t the life I was meant to live, and I sensed that for me personally, those were steps I needed to take to end up where I’m going. I feel so deeply that if I had chosen to remain in the city and to live in the city more permanently, I would not have the life that I want to live. I’m not even just talking about being able to travel and stuff like that, I’m talking about business, my personal life, relationships. I would not reach where I am meant to go, where I feel so deeply that I am meant to go, if I remained in the city and that’s nothing against the city at all. I love this city and I’m going to talk about that more and and how much gratitude I have for the city and how much fucking respect I have for the people here, but it is not where I am meant to be. 

 

There’s a quote that I heard once from Oprah, about when it’s time to move and the energy of your life and she says, “I came to the point where I had grown as much as I could grow in that space, and I could feel the energy of my life pulling me in another direction. That’s how you know when it’s time to move, you can feel the energy of your life pulling you in another direction”. That really struck me at a deep level, and it’s interesting because I heard that quote, as I was preparing to leave Canada a year ago, and the timing just seemed so impeccable and I felt that so intensely, I was like, that is exactly what it is, my energy is absolutely pulling me away from this place. In so many ways it’s hard to even describe and leaving this city felt necessary to my survival. I cannot stress that enough. Burning my entire life to the ground in general felt absolutely necessary to my survival, as necessary as breathing. I’ve talked before about burning bridges to my old life, and some of that in the moment was intentional in a slightly different way. Because I needed to guarantee that I wouldn’t go backwards to the people, places, and things that no longer served me when I got scared, because I knew that there would be moments ahead when I would be absolutely scared fucking shitless. The easier choice in those moments would be to retreat and go backwards rather than forging my own path. So I prepared for those moments in advance, sometimes months in advance by building my own personal insurance policy of destroying my old life to the point that there would be nothing left of it to go back to. I am extremely happy with that decision or set of decisions. This is not necessary for everyone to do, but I knew myself and I knew that there would be moments ahead where I would be so terrified as to how many unknowns were ahead of me that it would have been so much easier to retreat and to go backwards and I was not prepared to do that.  I laid the groundwork well in advance to burn as many fucking bridges as I could. 

 

That said, I also don’t mean burning bridges in terms of burning down every relationship in my life, like friendships that I had with really incredible humans. It’s not about that it was burning the bridges to you know, like my old job, my old corporate job that, probably would have been easier to go back to that burning bridges with people who had betrayed me, mistreated me, no longer served me in the way that was going to be mutually beneficial in any in any way, shape or form. There were so many ways that I burned things to the ground as much as I could because I felt  in the moment that I was being given a rare, once in a lifetime opportunity to rebuild my entire life the way I wanted to live it and I was not going to waste that chance. There are people who would do anything to have that kind of chance. The last thing I plan on doing is waking up 20 or 30 years from now and feeling like I’m living somebody else’s life. My choices may look reckless or downright crazy, to burn my life down the way I did, just to pick up and move to the other side of the world all by myself not knowing a soul and rebuild an entirely new life. That sounds absolutely insane to some people, but I have never felt more intentional and focused and in full alignment in my entire life. Yet, I still need to stress this is very individual. My choices are not the right ones for everyone. The only reason why my choices in the past year or two have worked so fucking well for me is because I made them based on me. My values, my goals, my dreams and the things that I could feel my intuition pulling me towards. You need to do the same for yourself and for your own life and that might look entirely different. I’ll be honest with you, I don’t fully know where home is. Bali has felt by far the closest to me compared to anywhere else I’ve been in the world, but ultimately, I don’t actually believe that home is necessarily there for me either. Not permanently. I mean I’m missing Bali so much right now it hurts, and I plan on going back when it’s possible to do so and to travel again. It’s interesting when I came back for the first time in December, when I came back to Hamilton for the first time in December for Christmas. I started developing a habit and I maintain this, that anytime I would go into a store I would put in earbuds and blare music so that people were discouraged from speaking to me. That sounds like an absolute asshole move. For anyone who knows me well knows how out of character that is for me because I’m very friendly, I’m extremely approachable, very down to earth.  I’m happy to talk to anybody, always smile at everyone and I still do that, but when I’m here, it’s different for me. 

This was especially true when I  came back the first time in December, because I did not want to create any more ties or associations to the city than I already had.  I was very intentional about that. I did not want to encourage any discussion or any type of relationship in any way.  I am still sometimes nervous about being tracked when I’m here and I’m highly conscious of wondering if I’m being watched like I was for many, many months without my knowledge. It’s made me even more private than I was before, but before I came back here in December, I had basically a complete nervous breakdown about coming back here. The first time was always going to be the hardest too. It’s funny, I saw a quote on Instagram, where it said, ‘even if you could go back, you wouldn’t belong there anymore’, and I was talking to a really sweet friend of mine back in December before I came back and he reminded me our group of friends had a running joke about ‘same-same but different.’ He said ‘same-same, you’re very different,’ and he said, ‘you’ve grown and evolved and the fact that you’re not going back as the same person is actually a really good thing because you’re going to be far better equipped to handle it and to deal with anything that comes up’. My last day in Bali in December before I came back to Canada for a few weeks over Christmas, I cried for the entire day. I cried at the gym. I cried at a cafe. I cried in the airport, I was heading from Bali to California for an event and then I purposely stayed in California to just chill out and try to mentally prepare myself for a few days afterwards. I then carried on to come back to Canada, and I had to be back in Canada by a certain date for an appointment I had scheduled. I scheduled the latest possible flight I could manage that would still allow me to make my appointment with only a few hours to spare because I was so resistant to stepping foot back in my old city again. Even when my plane landed on Canadian soil for the first time in months, I thought I might feel some sort of comfort, but I felt nothing but total dread when the pilot announced ‘Welcome to Canada’. I was looking forward to seeing my family and a couple close friends but that was it, and to be completely transparent with you there are very few people that I’m close to in this city at this point. 

 

Sometimes I simply feel as though my life and business are changing at such an absolutely astonishing rate right now that it’s almost too much effort to try and explain it to anyone who isn’t in my tightest inner circle, and in on the day to day happenings, because my entire life is unrecognizable from a year ago. I am unrecognizable in so many ways. Even my physical body has changed in multiple ways. I have more tattoos, I have a lot more muscle than I did before, and I mean this is a bonus, I’m no longer the palest kid in the room, but I carry myself very differently than I did before. My core personality traits are all the same, but I have shifted in a massive way, and listen, what I want to say about Hamilton: people from this city have fucking grit and I love that so much. I haven’t experienced that anywhere else in the world. I’ve been to many different countries and I have not experienced another set of people who have the kind of grit and determination and pride that the people in this city do. This is where I’m from, and I will always be very proud to say that I’m from here. Always. I wear that shit like a badge of honor. People can recognize each other. If we find out that somebody else is from Hamilton or like, Oh, I fucking know you. I can practically see a piece of your soul because I know you’re from Hamilton. I feel that so deeply and this place will always hold such a special place in my heart, but it’s simply not my home.

This city has helped to shape me into who I am today and I am forever grateful. Forever grateful. I spent the first 32 years of my life in this city and it has served me incredibly well and it has shaped me into who I am, but the uncertainty of not knowing exactly where you physically belong in the world requires you to go inward. To dig deeper and to learn to cultivate that sense of home from within, rather than solely relying on external geographical locations to provide everything that you need. Not only that, but your problems will follow you wherever you go. Picking up and moving doesn’t mean that you solve an issue. The issues are still there and will continue to demand your attention until you figure your shit out. What’s the saying about wherever you go, there you are, and I think that there were some people when I left who thought I was kind of just running away. I knew I wasn’t running away, and I put a lot of careful thought and intention into that, I even explored that with my therapist at the time because I wanted to make absolutely certain that I was not bypassing anything. I knew in my heart that this was never going to be my home again. This is not where I belong, and at the moment, I am living here temporarily. I’m temporarily displaced here. Let’s put it that way, but I’ll be gone again from here when the opportunity presents itself and when it’s safe to travel and all of those types of things. It’s not to say I’ll never be back but I will never be back here to live again. I’ll be back here to visit but not to live ever again. The person I was who belonged in the city died with my last relationship. Additionally, this one sentence always really struck me: 

 

A year ago, my therapist pointed out some lingering negative feelings about this place. She said ‘this city betrayed you’. I had to really think about that and I thought, you know, that’s kind of true. There was a very, very small handful of people who knew not necessarily what was going on in my relationship that I didn’t know about. They knew certain things that I didn’t know, and even if they weren’t exactly sure that it meant infidelity or anything related to that, I felt betrayed by my city because it had gone on for so long. The city is not that big. For some context for anyone who isn’t familiar with where I’m talking about. It’s about half a million people here  but it feels small, like really small. That was partly why it was such a shock that this had been going on. The infidelity had been going on behind my back for nine years. Seriously, this city is small, everybody knows everybody. It does not feel like half a million people live here, and I felt so betrayed. I don’t respond well to being betrayed. When my trust is broken. I am extremely forgiving. I am extremely compassionate, but I don’t forget that shit. It gives me the information that I need to know. With the exception of my one best friend that I met here when I was 12, I’m not friends with anyone from high school or university. I never was, once those chapters ended, they were just acquaintances. People will say hello when they message me or see me in the DMs or whatever. It was sort of assigned to me, like I always felt like I didn’t quite fit in here, even back in high school. I never felt like I fully belonged here. Yes, it was my home but only because I didn’t know anything else. I had never permanently lived anywhere else. So I didn’t have anything to compare it to, but I always felt like I didn’t quite fit in here, I always have. I didn’t really start finding that the large majority of who I consider to be my people until I started my business back at the beginning of 2017. It opened up this whole new world to me, of people that I was meeting online who I felt closer with them, and I felt more connected with them and just feeling understood in a way that I had never felt, with very few exceptions other than  like two or three very close people to me here locally. I had never experienced that before. 

Many of my friends right now are also displaced around the globe, they left Bali or they left other countries to go back to their home countries when the pandemic started closing borders and embassies and governments were making really strong recommendations for everyone to return to their home countries. It’s extremely unsettling sometimes not knowing where you belong physically in the world. It requires you to put in some extra effort to find ways to feel grounded, but it can also really be very freeing, although maybe not so much when you’re locked down and can’t explore anywhere, but a little bit of a different situation. I know multiple people who’ve gone back to places they consider to be their homes, because that’s where they’re from, only to realize they no longer belong there. When I looked up the definition of home, most of the definitions I found, included something related to like a house or a building or dwelling of some kind. What if we’ve been thinking about the entire concept of home all wrong? It’s not your postal code, or zip code for my American friends, but a sense of belonging that you carry within you? What if more of us listened to our hearts when it came to deciding where to live instead of a variety of other factors that we think we should care about, because it’s part of a more conventional way to live? What if you can feel that you’re home from within, rather than looking to external sources?

 

 Don’t get me wrong in terms of the external sourcing, when I first walked into the house that I ended up buying six, oh gosh, it’s seven years ago now. I knew as soon as I stepped one foot in the door that I belonged there, and the physical structure itself felt welcoming to me. This sounds so bizarre, but I bonded with that house instantly. I also knew when that house no longer felt like home and it was time to go, and when I stepped off the plane for the first time in Bali, I started to feel my energy coming back to me for the first time in months, and it felt like my entire life force was being replenished like reigniting a spark in me that had gone out a really long time ago. We can associate home with comfort, and that’s great until it’s not, because what if we’re confusing familiar with comfortable? They’re two different things. This city will always be familiar to me but I am now uncomfortable here, which is one of many reasons why I know that it’s no longer my home. I need to fully acknowledge my immense privilege to be able to travel. Again, pandemic pending, but it’s that privilege of being able to travel is one that I hope I never take for granted, particularly after this situation, but even just in general, and I don’t know where I’m going to end up living in the longer term and people keep asking me where I’m headed. Once things start opening up, there’s a list of multiple options and Bali is definitely very high on that list. I will absolutely be going back to Bali as soon as I can, but I’m also open to seeing where things go too. Moreover, I’m not going to bother making any major decisions right now when everything is so up in the air, I’d rather play things by ear and see what decisions turn out to be the right ones. I have always been a planner. I’ve always been someone who wanted the full plan laid out in front of me, but I have learned in the hardest possible ways that you can plan all you want, and life isn’t going to match your plan. So you might as well be open to shifting and moving and evolving as life happens rather than stressing quite so much about making those decisions right now when those decisions might not even be applicable longer term. 

 

I try to give takeaways wherever I can, and this is a much more personal episode than I sometimes do. The ways that I’ve handled this, one of them being my therapist. I have definitely worked with my therapist to work through some of the issues that I’ve had around leaving the city and not feeling like I belong and all of those things. I also have a personal development relationship coach named Emma. She’s been on the podcast. I will reference her in the show notes. She is incredible. I absolutely adore that woman. I think she actually calls herself an empowerment coach, but I tend to refer to her more as like my relationship/personal development coach. Finding ways to stay grounded no matter where I am in the world, just super basic routines that keep me feeling like myself like eating in a way that makes me feel really good. Drinking tons of water, as much sleep as possible, lots of walking and workouts and audio messages and calls with people closest to me. That sounds so basic, but you don’t need to do anything fancy to stay grounded truly. I am also very careful about who I surround myself with. My inner circle is very tight knit and made up of rock solid humans. That keeps me grounded and supports me more than anything else. At the same time, I also am very open to putting myself out there and being open to exploring new friendships. Sometimes, you know, work more slowly than others and see where things go. 

 

If you close yourself off, you could miss out on some really, really special people, really special people, that the people that I have met in Bali by being very open to meeting people in Bali. It’s indescribable, I have met just the coolest fucking humans of my life in Bali. There are amazing people everywhere, but not if you’re not open to it. That’s something else that I find a lot of times in North American cities in general. I think that you would find this a lot of times in any major city, that sometimes it’s very easy for us to get sucked into our routines, and then we just go about our day kind of unconsciously, without ever really opening up ourselves to the possibility of meeting new people. So when you travel, if you have the privilege of being able to travel then you’re opening yourself up to being able to meet some more people. If you can’t, traveling online is still a really great way to do this. I met some incredible people online alone before I started traveling full time. So that’s a really great way to do this as well. This sounds cliche, but step outside your comfort zone, do these things to scare the shit out of you, even if they make no sense. When you survive those things, you’ll build a whole new layer of self trust, resilience and confidence that will, over time, give you the courage to do more and more things that scare you. They could have incredible outcomes, and some people will always say, What if it doesn’t work? Okay, but what if it does? What are the things that you’re wishing for and hoping that that are actually possible? You might be way too focused on the house, which is where we all get bogged down. We think of a possibility and then our brains immediately go okay, but how would I get from here to there? Then we start thinking of all the things that will get in the way, and we justify not taking any action at all, and then we get stuck, we remain in the exact same place and nothing ever fucking changes.

 

I want to challenge you to step beyond that and I need to say, not only do I really have this deep tie to Hamilton that I always will, but Canada in general, I love Canada deeply. I feel so fucking fortunate to call this home that this country, my home country, it is absolutely part of my soul. Privilege isn’t even a good enough word. It is an absolute privilege to be a Canadian citizen, one that many would do almost anything for including risking their own lives. I need to stress that there are so many people in the world that would do virtually anything to be able to say that Canada was their home country. I never, ever forget that. In the long term, I may very well end up living here in Canada again, but it won’t be this particular city and it won’t even be this province. It’s funny too, I’ve really developed a huge appreciation when people mentioned to me how much I must miss my friends and my life in Bali, because it just feels like this really beautiful acknowledgement that touches my heart. I find that so many people don’t think of it that way. For some reason, some people seem to just picture me gallivanting around or something. I don’t know. I think that people just don’t have any concept of what my days look like when I’m traveling or what I’m doing or what I’m getting out to and, and I am pretty private, I don’t put play by plays on my Instagram stories. I just kind of put the occasional highlight here or there. Like I’m explaining something that I’m talking about or whatever. There is one person from high school who asked me how things were going and when I said I was in Bali and when I said I was working a lot he kind of responded with Yeah right. That I was clearly partying 24/7 because he saw the photos and videos I posted on the beach with friends. I’m like, Okay, well what you don’t see is that I get up at five in the morning, I do some work, then I go to the gym and then I eat breakfast and then I work again all day. Then I usually just try to wrap up my day with a walk on the beach and a coconut with friends or something. Sometimes I then do dinner and then work more before I go to bed. So trust me, it is not partying 24/7, I can assure you that I built an entire life in Bali, filled with people and things I am deeply passionate about. No matter my next move or where I end up long term, Bali will always be part of my definition of home and part of the measuring stick that I use to help determine what feels like home enough, and I have to tell you Bali has set that bar fucking high, because I have never felt like I belong somewhere as much as I have in Bali which is why I will definitely be be going back again and not necessarily for for super long term, but I know that I am being pulled back there and I just so desperately miss some of my people there and some of the places there and just the magic that that I found there, I miss it so much. I have to say if we all made decisions based on the opinions of all the Karens in our lives, who are giving us shit for for partying 24/7, they actually know nothing about our day to day life, or any other reason everyone is always going to have an opinion. You have to do what is best for you. If we all made decisions based on the opinions of all the Karens in our lives, we would all be wildly unhappy. I’m not going to lie, I’ve got to tell you, Karen doesn’t actually give that much of a shit about what you’re doing with your life. Karen might just be jealous, or Karen might have so much shit going on in her own life. She’s projecting it onto you. There’s a wide range of reasons here and Karen can also be a male or female. In this example, I just happen to use Karen because I tend to use other examples. Sorry to anyone named Karen. Oh, there I am sorry that this seems to become a thing in the online space with people referring to Karen this way. I feel bad. 

 

Anyway, I just predict that we are going to see a lot of people making drastic life changes over the next year or two. This pandemic is offering a great deal of clarity and perspective and it’s going to shift people in life changing ways. You’re going to see relationships end, new ones bloom. You’ll feel far closer to some people than ever before, while others will totally fall off your radar. Massive lifestyle changes, career shifts, businesses born, huge moves, major life events or crisis or grief or trauma, they have a way of making us see things more clearly. Sometimes that will mean not liking what we see and needing to make a change, and I’ve been predicting that from day one of this pandemic. I was getting on Instagram while I’m saying it, I’m like, you’re gonna see some big shit changing in the next few months and probably a couple of years. There’s even things like after 9/11 you know, travel, travel restrictions and all the changes in airports and everything aside, a lot of people made some really significant life changes, like you saw more people getting married, more people getting divorced. There were all kinds of things that were born from that because these moments of crisis make us take a really hard look at our lives. It makes us want to shift because we realize sometimes maybe we don’t have unlimited time here, which we don’t. You might as well make the most of the time that you do have here.  

 

I appreciate you listening to this and I just, this one has been on my heart for a while. I can’t even explain how I have struggled with this a lot. I was having a really tough time about the thought of coming back here in December.I had a bit of a tough time while I was here in December. This time felt much easier because the first time was always going to be the hardest after everything that happened here when I left. I know that I don’t belong here, and that’s okay. I’ve accepted that, I’m fully fine with that, and yes, I am temporarily displaced here but it’s not forever and I will be able to leave when the time is right and it’s not a problem but It is a shift. It’s a really big shift. There have definitely been moments where I have grieved the so-called loss of this city. It is a part of me that felt like maybe I belonged here, even though I’ve never felt I fully belonged here, but the part of me that kind of felt like I belonged here because I didn’t know living anywhere else. It’s gone. I had to grieve that because this city does hold a really special place in my heart, but it is not where I belong. It is not where I am meant to be, and it is not where I’m going to end up, and that’s okay. I’ve come to terms with that. I wanted to kind of explain that a little bit because I think that there are more of us out there than any of us even realize who might kind of be feeling the same way about a place that we live or have felt that that same way about a place You’ve maybe left before, and I wanted to give some context to that. Alot of people, I think, tend to see Bali as sort of like a running away place, and I just happened to feel it too. I happened to have felt really pulled to Bali. By the way, I wasn’t planning on living there. I planned on staying for six weeks and leaving, and I just happened to fall in love with it, and then I stayed. So that wasn’t even a planned decision, but it was one of those times where I could tell that it was the right decision for me in the moment. Looking back, it absolutely was the right decision, and I am really looking forward to going back, even if it’s not there to live there permanently. I am looking forward to going back to at least visit but I also really want you to kind of rethink the concept of home. 

 

My final question I’m going to leave you with is, what feels like home to you. Can you identify the feeling? What’s the sensation where it feels like home, or who feels like home to you? Sometimes we can really feel at home with other people too, which is amazing. I also think that ultimately, you need to cultivate that sense of home within yourself, because you need to have that from within. When you have that from within, you can carry that with you anywhere and with anyone, as opposed to depending on that sense of home and relying on it being in somebody else. I think that it is beautiful to cultivate that sense of home within somebody else, but you need to cultivate it within yourself first. I hope this has given some insight into a little bit of my inner workings. This one, it felt a little weird, but I felt really pulled to share it, and I’ve had it on my mind to share for a while but I wasn’t ready and then the then the pandemic happened and it just became so utterly irrelevant compared to bigger global scale issues and it’s not that this is an issue I’m looking for help with. I’ve come to terms with all of it and I’m completely happy with my decision. I just wanted to give it a voice in case you have been experiencing something similar to give you a different perspective, that’s all. We’ll be back on Thursday.

 

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