Instead of Getting Married…I’m Moving to London

IMG_7051What do you do when the “plan” you had for your life isn’t unfolding as you expected?

I have always seen my life laid out in front of me like a book. Each chapter is a defining stage of life: childhood, high school, college, early adulthood ( pretending to be an adult) and adulthood. I had read through all these chapters with ease and in general, had positive experiences. I thought the next chapters in my life would be an engagement, marriage, and children. That was the way this book is supposed to read, right?

Time started passing by, but the pages in my book were not turning to the next chapter. Everyone around me seemed to be reading ahead. At first, just one chapter, but soon two and three chapters ahead and still, my pages didn’t turn. I thought if I just stayed still, then the page would turn. I had all the right pieces in place, I just needed to wait for it to happen.

Soon that stillness changed into paralysis. I grew envious and impatient. I started to believe that I was inadequate in some way. I knew all these thoughts were illogical, but the more time that passed, the more I started to believe them.

I had a trip planned to Europe in May and it couldn’t have come at a worse time. I was terrified that my feelings would ruin my trip. The paralysis was debilitating and my depression was pulling me even further down, but I didn’t have a choice, this trip was forcing me to move.

FullSizeRenderI have always said that when I travel, my soul feels fulfilled. On this trip, I spent my time in Sweden, England, and Italy traveling with friends.  For the last 3 days of my trip, I hiked Cinque Terre on my own. The time alone (and the very long, grueling hike) provided a lot of time to reflect on the experiences of my trip, as well as my life back home. I realized that I felt alive. I felt like my true self. I felt more comfortable in my skin and self than I could remember feeling in a very long time.

I thought about what my life looked like and recognized how deeply unhappy I was waiting for the page to turn. Finally, I realized that wasn’t falling behind as everyone read ahead….I was reading the wrong book.

The feeling of relief at my realization was overwhelming. The self-criticism went away and was replaced with self-empowerment. It is time to pick up my book and turn the page myself.

The next chapter in my life is not marriage and kids.

The next chapter in my book is an adventure.

I have silently envied those who quit their jobs, travel the world and reinvent their life. I have always wanted to live abroad, but anytime I considered it, I only saw barriers ahead of me.

  • I don’t have a job.
  • I don’t have a visa.
  • I don’t have enough money.

What I didn’t see was the barriers that did not exist for me. I do not have a husband, children, or house to consider in my decisions. I do not have major responsibilities holding me in this place. All the reasons I was holding myself back, could be overcome. Instead of looking at barriers to my adventure, I was looking at an opportunity that I couldn’t let pass me by.

When I got home from my trip, I did what every good daughter does, I called my Mother.

I said, “I need to talk to you about something”.

She responded, “What city is it?”

She knew what I was going to tell her. I don’t know how Moms know, but they always do.

I said, “It’s London. I am moving to London.”

I don’t have a solution to the barriers that I listed. I know that they will not necessarily be easy to overcome, but I know it is not impossible.

The point of this chapter in my book is not to succeed, but to try.

I may never find a job. I may run out of money. I may get kicked out of the country. It doesn’t matter what happens because at the end of this chapter, I did it. I went on the adventure. The experience is more valuable than the dollars in my savings account, the break in my resume or the fear of failure.

So, I have quit my job, I am breaking my apartment lease, selling my car, selling or storing 99% of everything I own, and getting on a plane to London. I don’t have answers to all the questions of how I am going to make it all work. I have a place to stay when I arrive (can’t wait to be roomies, Mandi & Stu!) and I will figure out the rest along the way.

I have never been more confident in any decision I have made. I know where I am going and I can’t wait to see what happens next.

So, here I come, London. Let’s do this.*

 

  • “This” will occur in October. Until then, I’ll be knocking down those barriers.

11 Comments on Instead of Getting Married…I’m Moving to London

  1. Raubi Perilli
    August 10, 2016 at 1:36 pm (1 year ago)

    Go for it Bri! I’m so excited for you that you are taking the leap and look forward to seeing where it takes you! Now, go make your own story!

    Reply
  2. Tove
    August 10, 2016 at 1:43 pm (1 year ago)

    So happy for you!!!! I have a feeling this will be the best decision you’ve ever made! A fresh start is always invigorating and full of possibilities….if you want me to put you in tough with the UK office of ScentAir, I’m happy to make the introductions! 🙂

    Reply
    • Jen
      August 10, 2016 at 2:56 pm (1 year ago)

      Good for you Bri! I will continue to pray and will be excited to read about your adventures. I applaud your courage to tell your story, especially when all I’ve ever thought of you was a strong, funny and talented young woman. Like you said, you have to try! Go for it and good luck.

      Reply
  3. Becca Bycott
    August 10, 2016 at 2:55 pm (1 year ago)

    I just got back from a solo trip to Tulum and completely relate to your sense of adventure, no holds barred. Thanks for writing such a great piece! I hope you have an amazing time in London. <3

    Reply
  4. Kelly
    August 10, 2016 at 3:31 pm (1 year ago)

    As someone who did almost exactly this (packed her life into 2 suitcases to move to China to, as I assured my mother, “teach for a year and figure my life out” after a relationship ended and I realized I hated my job, I wish you luck and open-mindedness. Because the next chapter of MY book involved meeting a local Chinese guy and getting engaged at the end of that year! We’re now happily married and yes, still living in China. You just never know what’s around the corner…

    Reply
  5. Katin
    August 10, 2016 at 3:55 pm (1 year ago)

    Good for you! Remenber….nothing ventured nothing gained!

    Reply
  6. Karin
    August 10, 2016 at 4:15 pm (1 year ago)

    Bri….Katin is me! HA!! This is so well written! I’m so happy for you and know this is the right decision for you.

    Reply
  7. Amy
    August 10, 2016 at 6:54 pm (1 year ago)

    Love this!! Excited for you and proud you are my friend!

    Reply
  8. Anonymous
    August 10, 2016 at 9:30 pm (1 year ago)

    Does that adequately explain my reaction?

    Reply
  9. Brenda Sindicich
    August 12, 2016 at 2:46 am (1 year ago)

    So happy that you figured this out at such a young age! Life is full of twists and turns and you will be now be living your authentic life that only you were meant to live. Can’t wait to hear about your next chapter!

    Reply
  10. Sara Ryan
    August 13, 2016 at 1:24 pm (1 year ago)

    Bri I have no doubt this will be an amazing experience! Some of the best years of my life were when I lived in Chile. It will work out! But don’t give up on those chapters…I found the love of my life at 36 while standing on the street and we married in June, less than a year later. Life is crazy! Have fun in London and go have a pint at my favorite pub, The Pride of Paddington!

    Reply

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