One Year Update (ok a little over a year)

How have we been here over a year already? How has it only been a year?! When I think back to the day we arrived in Scotland it seems like it was years ago. I felt so overwhelmed when we arrived here, it was nearly crushing. I still feel overwhelmed at times but in a completely different way. I am at least feeling a bit more at ease and at home now.

I will say life in many ways doesn’t look like what I thought it would look like by now. There are some wonderful things that have happened and some difficult things. I was certain that we’d both be squared away with jobs and weaned off of our savings by the end of 2018. I will say our financial situation is looking pretty sketchy at the moment. I’m preparing to look for either another part time job or just cave and go back to working full time in the legal field, which I really don’t want to do but it might be necessary to do for a little while. Ideally, I’d find something part time that is more focused on a new career direction. Ryan continues to get some freelance work and that has been really great.

Something that I couldn’t have anticipated is the torrid love affair I’d develop with the flying trapeze. It’s something I have truly become passionate about and has been such a positive part of my life. As a bonus I have met some really fabulous people at Aerial Edge (where I practise). I will admit that this contributes to draining our finances; however, it has served as self-preservation during some of my extreme depressive lows. It’s a bit of a dream but it would be great if I could one day make a living (even at the most minimal of wages) working in such a place. Hell, I’d be happy to have a job cleaning a circus school somewhere. I just want to be in that environment as much as possible, an environment that feels right to me.

This city feels more and more like home as time goes on. Even though I have many frustrations with this city, I love it and I can’t imagine living anywhere else right now. I’ve found that I’ve changed in more ways than I initially thought. I have become used to the way things are here and have taken on more behaviors specific to here than I realised. I realise this when meeting up with other Americans who are just visiting and I’ll get confused by something they say or do, or they’ll get confused by something I say. I bounce between British spelling of words and North American spelling. I have also fully embraced (ok, mostly embraced) my awkwardness and just who I am in general. I used to feel really uncomfortable when I realised I said things that seemed odd to people, or I’d completely space out and lose track of what’s going on, and now I’ve reached the “fuck it, this is just where I’ve landed on the weirdo scale” point and I’ve quit overanalyzing things I say or do. While I’m pretty much still the same person, I feel I have gone through tremendous personal growth over the last year.

I met a gal from Portland the other day at our friend’s housewarming party. It was kind of amazing because it was like running into someone who fully speaks my language. She got excited about some of the stupid things I get excited about and when I accidently blurted out “that’s what she said” in response to a comment made by her Scottish husband she was on it and we both had a good laugh. It was just cool having that connection for a moment. We’ve had a few guests from the US over the last month and a half and in addition to that I was treated to dinner on two seperate occasions by former coworkers that were travelling through, so I’ve seen more North Americans in the last two months than I had in the entire year preceding that. The company has been nice because I still feel a bit lonely at times. I am blessed to know so many great people in this city, though I don’t have any of the going out for coffee/tea/dinner/shopping and have a good chat kind of friendships yet. Ryan and I have people we hang out with together but I don’t have anyone that wants to hang out with just me… I’m realising I’m just not everyone’s cup of tea (see earlier comment about being a bit of a weirdo).

Chewie and I are still doing the dog agility thing. We have several shows left but after September competition season will be winding down. I’ve really enjoyed competing with him this summer and, as I’ve mentioned before in either this blog or my dog agility blog, it’s been a lot of fun having an agility friend to go to shows with. I should slightly backtrack on my earlier statement about nobody wanting to hang out with me, she knows I’m a weirdo and still allows me to go to agility events with her. I think she’s just used to me now. LOL! Chewbacca has killed it over the summer and did so much better than I could have anticipated, especially considering we don’t practise anywhere near as much as we used to… I’ve kind of enjoyed taking it all less seriously and just having fun with it here and there.

Well, I’m going to wrap this up now. I have had a lot of struggles while here and have genuinely wanted to leave at times. I have also had so many moments where I can’t believe I’m here and every fiber of my being screams for this all to work out because I never want to leave. While my brain screams that our finances are going to end this dream, my spirit says things are going to be ok. Some days are hard, both my husband and I get so discouraged, but right now in this very moment I am hopeful. Tomorrow may bring darkness but for today I am embracing this feeling and, if not just for even one day, I am hopeful.

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