Well it has been a long break, but a needed one. Authenticity, self-analysis, decision and execution. It sounds simple but the bigger the decision, the more we get lost in what we should do and forget the true us until, fed up of seeing the signs ignored, the body takes action, sends out the symptoms till we have no other choice than to listen. Seen my mission in this blog is to share life tools and tips and reflections out of my professional life, self help books and life experience I will share in this case my personal story.
After 15 years with our three children moving from Cameroon, to Uganda, to Senegal and Berlin, we returned to my husbands home country the Netherlands two years ago. And little by little my balanced life started to unravel… Whether Repat Blues, midlife crisis, changed financial conditions and a less “exciting”life, or my memories as an adolescent here…I started to feel suffocated and miserable in all areas of my life. The children needed me less and less, I needed more professional outlets, Holland is physically small, and the differences between my husband and I on many subjects just seemed to become more and apparent. I put it down at first to a general midlife overview where I felt I was short selling myself but refused to ignore the most serious component: my relationship. I refused to admit there was anything fundamentally wrong listing all the reasons why everything was fine. First and foremost our three beautiful children, how generous and caring and supportive he has always been, the languages and love to travel we share etc…but reasons without the right feelings … My body started creating a whole litany of ailments which could not be ignored and over two tortuous years I circled and circled till suddenly I knew. I knew that OK was not enough for me, nor was it fair on him. The day I saw this, all my stress and inner battle, and with it the symptoms disappeared. We took it one step at a time, first living companionably under the same roof, informing family and the children. I am blessed with a husband who though at first shocked, hurt and angry, grew to see that he may in effect be happier with someone else. The children initially distraught are taking it in their stride and we are managing so far to stay best of friends with family meals on Sunday, sharing the car…etc For that I am grateful. The house is full of laughter and the children also go with pleasure for a weekly meal and sleepovers at Papas. Sure I am worried, where to live ( I have never lived anywhere more than a few years), money, job ..etc. Will I lose the only life I know: expat child? Expat partner? I guess now I am expat. Holland will stay my home for as long as the children are schooled here and after that …who knows? The world is my oyster and more than anything else, I feel authentic, whole, knowing that despite of difficulties, I know deep down to the core of my being that this is the right thing to do, for us all. For now I have no desire for another relationship, I revel in my freedom and my children and the new path ahead. So now I am back on track, feeling I can ethically coach again and renewing with the wonderful world of self improvement and this blog. Now this is not a line of action I recommend, but are there areas of your life needing to be revisited for authenticity?