Another year older and a little bit wiser…sometimes

My butt is incredibly sore today. It’s a rather interesting way to end a birthday, but turns out sitting on it meant it needed massaging. And that hurt. But I think it’s going to be ok. With my flitting around the world this year it doesn’t quite feel time for my birthday to have come around again or that it’s been a year since granddad passed away. Charlie the cat is as weird as ever but he’s come around to sleeping on my bed and even thinks it’s fun to wake me up by standing on my head in the night. I spent the morning with mum at a spa for a detox treatment and I feel suitably loved and detoxed and filled with healthy chocolate. What on earth would the world do without chocolate?

The spa we went to gave me a little pink flower pot plant so I now have three living things that rely on me! I’m rather determined to keep it alive…the plant that is. I’m hoping the cat and horse can look after themselves a little because let’s be honest, I’m not actually that good at keeping even myself alive. But I’ve managed 22 years so that’s got to count for something!

I wanted to do a big post about how much has changed over the past year but sometimes there just aren’t words for things so here is a super brief recap:

I lost granddad, I brought a horse and sold a horse, Ivy had a baby horse and I sold him, I ran away overseas and travelled to nine countries in four months and absolutely loved it and learnt a bunch of life lessons, and I went from a four year relationship to single, I ended up with a cat. And here we are!

When I was a kid I always thought: “When I get to 21, life will be good”. I have no idea why it was 21, but I seemed to think life would stop there. I thought I’d have a car, a horse, a house, a job, and a degree and I’d be set for life. I have all that sure, but it’s nothing like I pictured and life is certainly not stopping here. I must chuckle at my much younger self and think, “Man, what am I going to think in another 10 years? Will I look back on my current self and think ‘how naive, if only you’d known’.” Yep, probably. But what I have come to realise is life never happens how you expect and even when it comes close to it, the feeling may be nothing like the one you’d anticipated. Walking away from my relationship was one of the hardest things to do. I wanted to fight, I wanted it to work. But I also hate giving up and sometimes I don’t know when to quit. Perhaps it was time to do so or perhaps I’m just stronger than I was four years ago, but I’m really quite ok. I’m sad in moments and angry in others but after losing people, seeing suffering in all parts of the world including my own, and having been diagnosed with a life altering health issue I feel like a break up is a mountain I’m well equipped to climb and with the support I have, there is absolutely no reason I won’t make a quick journey over the other side.

Anyway, instead of rambling on about all the changes I decided I’d instead write a list of all the things I’m grateful for in my life.

  • Amazing friends I’m not sure I’d be ok without
  • The chance to have worked at a great paper and have more experience under my belt than I ever imagined in my first 18 months of work.
  • A really cool, easy horse who is the bees knees
  • A not-so-cuddly cat who’s a bit weird but I like him.
  • Parents who are going to have to put up with my being at home a lot for the next few months
  • New work and volunteer opportunities
  • A body that functions properly 90 per cent of the time
  • A bed all to myself
  • Chocolate
  • The ability to travel the world on my own and all the incredible things I’ve learnt

I’d go on, but that’s the gist of it. In the past few months life has become an incredibly interesting and slightly frightening place to navigate. I spent several days standing on the top of mountains screaming “I’M ALIVE”, I spent days dragging a 20kg bag around with me, I’ve walked more miles than I ever thought was possible in four months, I’ve faced some of my biggest fears, I’ve eaten scorpions, I’ve seen suffering and heartbreak, and I’ve had the chance to change my world view.

Now I’m here and in my 22nd year I’m excited about what’s going to happen now. There are so many paths and picking the ‘right’ one seems scary, but it’s just taking that first step. And I’ll take it. Once I do, there won’t be any stopping me! For now the ‘to do’ list simply has one thing: keep climbing mountains and I mean that both figuratively and literally.

Tomorrow I’m heading up north with dad to celebrate the first year anniversary of granddad passing away. It’s a chance for me to revisit places Alex and I spent a lot of time and accept that’s part of the past, and it’s a chance to grieve but also acknowledge just how amazing granddad was and how mum we miss him, but also how ok we’re going to be.

So on that note, I’m going to leave this post with a bunch of quotes I found on this blog: http://thoughtcatalog.com/katie-wilkes/2014/12/20-quotes-that-all-20-year-olds-must-read/

“It’s better to have nobody than someone who is half there, or who doesn’t want to be there.”
Angelina Jolie

“You can tell so much about a person by the way they leave you.”
Redvers Bailey

“I will not be your sometimes.”
Anonymous, Six Word Stories

“The hours between 12 AM and 6 AM have a funny habit of making you feel like you’re either on top of the world or under it.”
Unknown

“I crave space. It charges my batteries. It helps me breathe. Being around people can be so exhausting, because most of them love to take and barely know how to give. Except for a rare few.”
Katie Kacvinsky

“The moment you feel like you have to prove your worth to someone is the moment to absolutely and utterly walk away.”
Alysia Harris

“Give yourself permission to immediately walk away from anything that gives you bad vibes. There is no need to explain or make sense of it. Just trust what you feel.”
Sonia Chuquette

“Nothing ever happens how you imagine it will.”
John Green

“Suddenly you’re 21 and you’re screaming along in the car to all the songs you listened to when you were sad in middle school and everything is different but everything is good.”
Unknown

“There had been too much emotion, too much damage, too much everything.”
Ernest Hemingway

“The secret of change is to focus all of your energy, not on fighting the old, but building the new.”
Socrates

“If you don’t make time to work on creating the life you want, you’re eventually going to be forced to spend a LOT of time dealing with a life you DON’T want.”
Kevin Ngo

“We can judge our progress by the courage of our questions and the depth of our answers, our willingness to embrace what is true rather than what feels good.”
Carl Sagan

So just remember life is beautiful even when it feels like you’ve been sat on by a bus or a large horse. Always take a moment before you decided to get back up off the ground because the sky is pretty damn beautiful. If you’ve fallen face down though that doesn’t really apply, sometimes mud can be good for your skin. Just remember that. And if you’re lonely, get a cat…they’re remarkably uncomplicated, even the strange ones.

Now here’s a song.

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And the continuous turn of events continues

When 2015 began I certainly didn’t see myself finishing it broke, jobless, and single. I also found my first grey hair today and I really wish that was the worst thing that had happened in the day. But it wasn’t. As I found myself sitting in my room of my parents home, the same room I lived in from ages 9 till 17, I couldn’t help but laugh at my life. I left five years ago after a break up, I left to study journalism in Hamilton and I had roughly $2,000 to my name. I was single, I had no job, I had very little money…but I did not have a grey hair. Now, five years later, I’ve returned with the same amount of money, no job, and single. It’s like nothing has changed yet I know everything has changed.

Here’s the thing about breaking up after four years: the world is a different place to navigate than the one I went into the relationship in. For starters, I’m now at an age where it’s like, do I make the change in relationship status public or private? When do I change it because I’m not quite ready to make it ‘official’ no matter how official it is. How do you go about dating again, not that that’s really on my to do list for some time. But how do you suddenly navigate a world where you’re suddenly four years older and have grey hairs appearing? A world where there are now things like Tinder? How do you actually even start again after four years turned into “I don’t feel the same way anymore” when you’d only just been talking about engagement and spending forever together less than six months before. Exactly how is it you get up and get on with life? The first thing people ask is how am I. I’m good. I’ve just come back from an amazing round the world trip and I have my horse back, I’ve found the perfect grazing for her just down the road, I have a cat, I have opportunities. I have an entire world at my feet…so I’m good.

But at the same time I feel like a truck has run over me because when I left, what I pictured coming back to was a very different landscape. My brain is still struggling to get itself around the fact I was in France a week ago and now I’m in New Zealand now it has to adapt to a whole new world.

And how do you go from picturing green paddocks and orchards and planting a veggie garden with someone to having no idea what the next step is?

Since I’m being honest, it’s also very hard to not decide to be a crazy cat lady forever when four out of five relationships have ended with “I just don’t feel the same way anymore”. Cool as guys. Super cool.

The best part about breaking up after one of the best breakup songs to date has just dropped: you ain’t alone in those tears. Cheers Adele.

So, let me reintroduce myself because this atomic bomb that’s gone off in slow motion over the past year has left me with a ringing in my ears and an inability to breath properly. I’m Sacha. I’m going to be 22 in a week, not even that. I have no idea what I’m doing with my life. And I have two weddings to be the bridesmaid for. And I’ve got a broken tail bone. And I know at some stage my heart will heal from the pain of losing people, of the family dramas, of this break up. It will get better because I have a cat and I have a horse. I have a degree. And I’m still standing. Because I’m yet to find something in my 22 years that’s left me unable to get up again. That atomic bomb has sent me flying and I’ve probably cried more tears in the past 12 months than I’ve cried in my entire life. But it means I can still feel and the ringing in my ears is slowly easing and the dust is settling. And I’m going to be just fine.

Let’s do that again. I’m Sacha, I’ll be 22 shortly, I’ve travelled the world, I have a degree in communications (ironic at times), I have a diploma in journalism. I have a passion for helping people and I’m thinking about retraining and figuring out how to put all my skills to good use. I’m part of this cool organisation called YouthNet designed to help bridge gaps to see our youth suicide rate improve, actually I’d like us not to have one. I love to do yoga. I love God. I have an awesome horse called Ivy and a cat called Charlie, he’s a bit like me: he’s been through a bit of bullshit so he’s not too sure on the being too close to people thing, but he loves pats and he seems to love me. I’m not sure what’s going to happen in my life right now. I have a clean slate, I have a whole world ahead of me and I can do what I want with it. And I damn well will do just that. I can do that.

So to all the newly singles out there, cheers to you. And all those in great relationships: appreciate them.

Common, let’s do this.