Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Lessons learnt moving out of home and away from London

I started writing this blog post a couple of weeks ago. So here is how it started.....

"I am writing this in my local library. We've been moved in two weeks and wifi still hasn't happened. This may well be a personal record... I am so eager to type all of my thoughts and observations out at the pace at which they're running through my head but unfortunately I've got to contend with a space bar which requires two thumbs to press it down and the eccentric sound of a father and toddler daughter singing a song from "Chitty Chitty Bang Bang". In a library. Yep. Welcome to my weekend! Life is weird away from home (London) sometimes. Anyhow, here is a little list of things I have learnt moving out of home... "

Then, as you can gather from the distinct lack of list, I decided to give up and go home (via three awesome charity shops). Now here I am two weeks later, sitting on my bed in the comfort of my new home with wifi galore. I suppose that can be lesson number one - transitions are unsettling sometimes but the beauty of them is that they're temporary.

Anyway, not only did I fail to complete the list or the blog post, I didn't return to Blogger again up until now. Where have I been? Well, just here really. Here and at work, and in my car getting between here and work. And on trains getting between here and work when work isn't at work. Up until this month - and can you believe that this is only post number three of September when we are pretty much in October? - I blogged regularly with the energy I'd been bottling up from all of those hours of rest. It was a full-time hobby, a creative outlet and something I loved. I still do love it now, but here's lesson number two - real life can get in the way!

I assume it is the adjustment that needs to be made when you move to a new town, in with a partner, starting a new job, thrown in with a weekend going back home for birthday celebrations, which has stolen me away from tending to this online space of mine. I come home and feel too exhausted to even turn the laptop on, let alone spill my thoughts onto paper. Oh and talking of paper, driving everywhere means that I spend little time on trains which means less time putting pen to paper for non-work related activities. So there's a little explanation of where I have been. I would imagine that my routine will form soon enough and that will make time for blogging, yoga, exercise and other things which have taken a back-seat.

So what else have I learnt about moving out of home? Well, mostly that parents do an amazing job managing work, life worries, organising and cooking meals, making packed lunches, doing the washing and ironing, owning an ironing basket in the first place, owning a hoover, using a hoover, knowing how to do basic plumbing, knowing how to dry a bath mat, taking care of more than one person and doing all of it everyday without fail. Wow.

But also that it is hugely exciting to know that you can learn to do all of these things, and more, yourself too. Things become second-nature, your skill set widens, your interests diversify...I wasn't anywhere near as interested in dish-drying racks ever in my life as I was trying to find the perfect one during week two of living here!

Also, there's a lot of paperwork involved in moving house. Keeping a folder handy for filing important documents and knowing where to find them is super helpful in those moments when you realise you're an "actual grown-up" now and it's your responsibility to pay for things that come out of taps and plug sockets. Get your favourite stationery involved so it feels less boring :)

More specifically, I'm having to get used to seeing a whole new level of road-kill in these countryside-ish ends. Blerrrrrrgh...not a sight I'm used to in London. Plus it reminds me every morning of a documentary I once watched in which I learnt that some people actively look for road-kill to eat for their dinner. Blerrrrrrgh again.

I suppose that leads on quite nicely to another major lesson I've learnt - and this may shock you so brace yourselves - there is a world outside London!! Growing up in one place, loving it and then leaving and not knowing if you'll ever go back is a daunting thought and one which I tried not to entertain too much prior to moving but crept into my head from time to time. Living away from the bustle of the city is somewhat of a shock to the system - as is the size of the "big" supermarkets (tiny, for the record) - but I am beginning to appreciate tranquillity and not queuing up for 15 minutes in each shop, not striding down the high street willing people to move out of your way because you are on a mission, nor being on a mission because quite frankly what's the constant rush all about? Sure, I miss the variety and choice of food, entertainment and people in London, I miss my family and friends, and I will always consider London to be "home home", but starting a new little life here, with all the humongous changes and (un)anticipated challenges, with M, quite frankly feels like one of the best things I have ever done.

And whilst that doesn't take away existing hardship, it certainly feels like a nudge in the right direction, which is the last little lesson I'll leave you with - if you can create a positive space in which you feel safe, whilst accepting that change is inescapable, then that's a pretty good foundation for whatever you decide to conquer next.

Pin It Now!


  1. There really IS a world outside London and it can be the most beautiful, rewarding, inspiring and magical world...obviously I'm biased! There is something incredibly reassuring though about realising that you too can be quite self sufficient away from home and the comforts of family, even if you miss them terribly. And I just bought my first ironing basket last month so thank you for making me feel a little smug about it, maybe I do have a little bit of 'it' together.
    I'm so glad that you're settling in and finding your feet, you sound so very happy (if a little busy!)
    M x

  2. Awww so glad you are happy with the move, and adjusting to life outside London! must be quite the change. i enjoyed this longer post and another quote by bee '..transitions are unsettling sometimes but the beauty of them is that they're temporary.' yes!!! x

  3. Road kill always breaks my heart. I have to be careful that I don't burst into tears while I'm driving around because it's just the saddest thing to see. Poor little things.

    You're so right, parents are fantastic. How do they manage to juggle all of those things while raising children? It's madness!

  4. Aww this was a lovely post and great to read your words again. You're right, life can and does get in the way and I think that's OK. It certainly sounds like you are very happy which is great to hear! Looking forward to hearing more about it when you settle in even more. : )

  5. This is a fantastic post, Bee! I had to chuckle at "how to dry a bath mat" because seriously, I got so frustrated over that living out of home. Jake would always leave it on the floor, and I'd always get mad at him for not hanging it up so it would dry out haha. Now I'm living back at my parents place again, I miss the independence of living out of home. I don't miss the bills, but zI do miss all the funny times with Jake, just the two of us in our own little (very little) space. You are just at the start of your adventure and you have so much ahead of you to enjoy! I also find it funny seeing your adjustment to "small town life". I did the opposite move when I first moved out of home, and everything you are having trouble adjusting to is everything I missed about home haha. Except the roadkill, but I did miss seeing wildlife in the city. xx

  6. I just loved reading this. I love your voice in your writing, just makes it extremely readable & it flows so well. I love your internet space & am just a little bummed I'm only coming across it now! I'm following you now & can't wait to see so so so much more.
    And I totally understand how you can forget there's a world outside of where you are. I felt that way too when I moved into uni.
    Have a good one!


  7. I've never felt at home anywhere in the world, at least not for a longer period of time. I can imagine living in London but not for too long. A year maybe.



  8. Anonymous10:58 pm

    "Transitions are unsettling sometimes but the beauty of them is that they're temporary" - what a fantastic quote!

    Thank you for such a lovely and honest account of your journey into independence :) It was so interesting to read about moving out of home from the city to the country, as most people do it the other way around! At the age of 18 I moved from a tiny country town to a city of over 4 million people, safe to say it was overwhelming... But those challenges present so many opportunities to learn about yourself and for achievements. The day I mastered my mum's roast dinner was definitely a day to remember! And aren't our parents just superheroes? As you say, that's definitely one of the first things you learn once you leave home. However even at the age of 22 I'm still a firm believer that there's no shame in calling home for help every now and then :)

    - Sarah x


  9. This was the most beautiful read ever! So refreshingly honest and down to earth - I have fallen in love with your personality and all of your little appreciations :) I still don't even know how my parents handle everything - we take routine so much for granted when we are young!! Love your blog so much, I'm feeling the need to grab a big cup of tea so I can sit around and read everything through for a little longer! ~ Lots of love from your new (still at home in London) regular reader! x