I’ve had several people ask me lately how I’m doing, what I miss from home, and if I’m homesick yet. I sense YET is the operative word in that sentence, YET I don’t miss ‘home’ . . . at least not in the physical sense, or at least not YET I don’t.
I haven’t missed the Arizona heat, I haven’t missed the driving. I don’t miss the desert scenery and I don’t miss going places I’d been to lots of times before. I’m revealing the in new, or at minimum doing my best to try. Don’t get me wrong, it’s in no way peaches and flowers all the time. It’s definitely hard being here, but there’s only one reason why . . . I miss my favourite people. I’m not homesick – I’m peoplesick.
I miss my family, my friends, and my boy - it’s very hard not having them here. Even if I didn’t necessarily see everyone regularly, it was knowing they were only a short distance away that gave me comfort. I don’t mind being by myself and I definitely have an independent streak (obviously, otherwise I’d be in a world of hurt!) but there’s a big difference between being by yourself because you decided to, and being by yourself because you don’t know anyone else around. That sounds a bit more dramatic than intended. . . I am certainly making new friends, have hung out with fun co-workers, and have a flatmate I’m getting to know – but somehow it’s just not the same.
It’s not the same as having inside jokes, “one-mind” moments, and years of history together. It just can’t compare to grabbing breakfast or a drink with a close friend and having nothing to talk about but catching up for hours. I don’t want any sympathy and I’m not asking for anyone to feel bad for me. No head-tilting “aww, poor thing” moments are required! In fact, I discourage them.
It’s just important to me personally, to not sugar coat anything or make it seem like I have this wonderfully perfect life that loads should be jealous of. It’s a pet peeve of mine to read blogs, see profiles, or hear about those people who paint a picture of their perfect lives, perfect partners, perfect kids, perfect jobs or perfect house who are clearly exuding so much happiness with where they’re at in their world that you just can’t bear it. Those people are liars living in la-la-land because in truth we all know that’s not quite how it rolls.
Life throws you ups and downs and sometimes those ups are really, REALLY high up and you can’t even believe how lucky you are! You want to shout and yell because you’re just so excited you can’t keep it in, and everyone needs to know how fantastically amazing it all is. DO IT – please shout! Let your excitement or good news be contagious, someone somewhere who had a day that can only be compared to dog shit will appreciate the reminder that life can kick ass! And if you happen to be the one who had that dog-shit-day then by all means complain about it – sometimes wallowing is needed and warranted. It will give you the opportunity to remember that you’re not the first or last person that’s having a tough go at it. Here’s the VERY important trick to it all – don’t live on either end of the extreme. Roll with the good and the bad, and let yourself be at terms with both. Don’t be a Bragging-Brenda or a Bitter-Betty . . . just BE REAL.
Hmm . . I’m not certain this letter stayed on the original path I intended. Nor am I certain that I’m not writing it more for myself than anyone else who may read it. But my point is (I think) that being here is a mixed bag. It’s amazing, hard, wonderful, and daunting all in the same breath. I miss my people so very much, because they are what made Arizona my home. But for now my home is London, and I’m going to keep shouting about that for a while.