A year ago, I was on the brink of my new life in New Zealand.
I was flying towards someone I’d fallen crazily in love with, despite (because of?) the ridiculous distance separating us.
It turned out that I was in love with a bit of a dream. An illusion. Something I’d convinced myself was real because I wanted to believe in it so badly.
So what has changed in a year?
Well, now I’m in Colombia. I’m an English teacher. I have a life here, Colombian friends, a routine that includes hilarious zumba classes and almost-daily siestas in 42ºC heat.
Sometimes, I still miss my NZ boy. I miss the way he would look at me when he thought I wasn’t looking, how he loved to surprise me, and the life we settled into together.
Lying in the sunshine with bubble tea and salsa, wandering round food markets and working our way through the offerings, and popping out for last-minute hot toddies on cold Christchurch evenings, became the daily happinesses that I shared with him.
I miss what I thought we would become. Having someone to plan trips with, to dream about travelling the world in a ramshackle caravan (complete with scrappy dog) with, and to argue over India-vs-China with as if it was really going to happen.
But most of the time, I’m good without him. My future no longer revolves around someone who doesn’t really want to play a starring role in it.
And it’s terrifying, because I have to actually work out for myself what I want to do next. Where I want to be, how I want to support myself, and what kind of life I want to build up from here on.
But it’s so incredibly exhilarating, because it’s all down to me.
Last September, I was running towards a guy, and towards a dream. It was amazing, I’ll never regret it, but it ended.
And then I had to rethink everything, because everything involved him. But now? Well, now I am free to wander, explore, and go wherever my restless feet take me.
I have no idea where I’ll be and what I’ll be doing come January 2017, but at least I know I’ll be doing it 100% for me.