Chasing dreams and wanting different things

There’s certainly no such thing as a perfect break up. As the name suggests, when something breaks it often hurts. Something shatters and you have to be careful not to cut yourself as you pick up the fragments of broken glass. Perhaps it’s called a break ‘up’ because afterwards, everything is up in the air. You question everything. Your future, your beliefs, what you really want in life. You’re looking at all these pieces that have delicately been interconnected for several years hurtling through the air and all you can do is watch and hope you don’t get too hurt.

Sometimes break ups are defined by betrayal, anger or deceit (I’ve been there). Sometimes it’s moving, taking up that dream job interstate or having to return home once your visa expires (also been there). But what happens if there’s no catalyst for your break up? What if, one day you look at each other and you realise, you just want different things?

This is the situation I found myself in a few months ago. And let me tell you, it was extremely difficult. Rewind a few months before that and I was actually planning on packing up my life and moving to Mongolia to work (it’s a long story – basically I found myself a dream opportunity and it happened to be in Ulaanbaatar). Balancing these two desires – the desire to maintain your relationship and follow your dreams – is challenging enough under normal circumstances. It’s even harder when you admit and accept the path you’re on could take you somewhere like Mongolia (and honestly if not Mongolia, Vietnam, Japan, Canada or France). What’s even harder than that, is the moment your partner looks at you and says ‘that’s not what I want.’

When COVID-19 happened and the world went into lockdown, suddenly everything I believed in, was working for, and deeply cared about -travel, adventure, curiosity, connection – felt torn away. My whole life I’d been told that my life was mine to control (ha how naive). That if you worked hard, you could achieve anything (ha how privileged). From a young age, I came to realise that my love of travel was something more than a two-week holiday to the Gold Coast or Bali. It was an identity, a badge that I wore with pride. It was something that I felt defined me, down to my core belief systems.

I’ve been doing this for the majority of my life. From a young age, we moved around Australia (NSW > South Australia > Queensland > NSW), I turned 16 in New Zealand on exchange (my first ever overseas trip over 10 years ago!). I’ve been lucky enough to live around the world, London, France, Canada, Mexico, and I hope there’s many more opportunities like that to come. Mongolia was nearly added to the list.

I always wondered why it was that I was so drawn to travel and living overseas. After all, when your partner doesn’t want the same thing as you, it inherently makes you question why you want those things. Is it just to take photos for Instagram? Is it to spend drunk nights bar hopping around foreign cities? Is it to escape the stress of ‘reality’ in Australia? It wasn’t really until travel was off the table that I reflected on why it was so important to me.

For me, it aligns to deeply with my values of connection, adventure, living a life of purpose, curiosity and constantly learning. Of course, there are always other ways to seek out these things – all of which are equally exciting and valid in their own right. But for me I have never felt more ‘me’ than when I’ve been in a foreign country. When I’ve been fiercely independent, lost in new streets and knew that it was entirely up to me to navigate and shape the life I wanted in this new place.

I am so fortunate that I’ve been able to have the opportunities I’ve had. I’m so lucky and I’ve done nothing to deserve it. Once you get a taste for chasing your dreams, it’s hard to let go.

Which brings me to the moment when we looked at each other late one night, the ghost of my near move to Mongolia, the growing inevitability of a move to Sydney to be closer to work, and the realisation that Sydney and Mongolia meant more than just different living situations. She said the words first. I fought it. I blinked back tears. I didn’t want to accept it. But she had so simply and sweetly voiced what we had both obviously been thinking. Our paths were taking us in different directions, and we realised it was more than just wanting to live in different places.

It’s better to have loved and lost, than to never have loved at all. But I tell you, loss fucking sucks. There’s not much worse than coming to terms with the fact that your romantic relationship is coming to an end. But I think something that would be worse is staying in a relationship, not chasing your dreams and end up regretting it – or even worse – resenting the other person. There’s no right or wrong choice, it’s just the choices you have in front of you at any given time.

COVID and the huge shift the world has felt has made me realise what is deeply important to me. My non negotiables. The dreams that are so big they scare me. It was an overdue reminder that life is so fucking short. We’re only on this earth for such a limited amount of time, and I honestly couldn’t bare it if I didn’t at least pursue or explore what is deeply burning within me.

What just might be the hardest part of this breakup is the question of love. Where does it go? Just because you want different things, doesn’t mean that you suddenly don’t love the other person. In fact, I think by accepting the fact that you’re on different paths, and actively choosing to navigate this tricky space with respect, shows how much you love them. Is the hardest breakup, not one filled with hate and betrayal, but one filled with love?

In these times, where things feel uncertain, overwhelming and just plain crazy, know what your values are, explore what your dreams are and hold on tight. Sometimes the hardest thing you’ll have to do is put all of your faith in yourself, but honestly, what if you actually get what you dreamed of? Again, it’s better to chase a dream and not reach it, than have no dream at all.

Of course, I am saddened by the end of this beautiful relationship. But I am delighted that the relationship continues as a caring and respectful friendship, and I am so grateful for all of the memories and experiences we shared together. No one knows what’s coming next, heck I don’t even know if 2020 knows what’s coming next, but I truly believe it will be great. I am determined and I’m chasing that dream.

Girl Code

Being a woman is freakin awesome! We are kind, intelligent, nurturing, we can grow humans inside of us … plus we have boobs! How fun is that?! But there’s a side to being a woman that is extremely difficult and is something I am sadly reminded of daily. Despite it being two thousand and freakin eighteen, we still live in a sexist, misogynistic, abusive and discriminatory society (if this is a surprise to you, then please take a moment to read about gender inequality within Australia). Us ladies put up with a lot of shit, particularly from the men. So us girls, we gotta band together and stick it to the man. And to do so, there’s a girl code. It’s kind of like the unwritten rules of sisterhood that I know you know what I’m talking about.

I admire all women. But over the past month, I’ve been exposed to the highs and lows of the girl code, and damn us females sure are interesting beautiful creatures.

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I was in a relationship not long ago. He got offered a sick job in another state, and like any supportive human, encouraged him to go. I think we were coming to the end of our relationship. Like milk you splash on your cereal a day or two after its expired, it’s risky business to keep using it. Maybe it’s my inner optimist, but I had faith that the milk would be fine to use. So we decided to stay together until he left and then we’d reassess the situation. Leading up to it, we decided to make the most of it, put our worries away and just enjoy each others company. Maybe a lot of pressure was removed by the fact that I knew he was moving away. Or maybe I was in denial that he could hurt me so badly.

I was driving home from a friends party when I received a message on Facebook from a friend.

“Hey Adelaide, are you still with your boyfriend?”

“Hey girl, yea I am. Haha. Why do you ask?”

Do you ever have those moments when you think you’re in a movie? Like this couldn’t possibly be real and you look around to see if there’s a camera. Or desperately look at your best friend in the drivers seat, looking for a sign that this is just some sick joke? I yearned for that sign, and in the absence of it, I knew that this was real.

It’s funny how guys are so captivated by their own dicks, that they think women want to hear about how much they want to shove it inside them. Tinder is a funny thing.

But this isn’t about my relationship. Because like any level-headed woman, I confronted him and said that I deserve better. He’s not deserving of my tears, heart ache or words. This is about girl code. 

My immediate concern was my friend that had unknowingly and unwillingly been dragged into this awkwardly horrible situation. What a brave bad ass bitch! Can you imagine being in that situation? I certainly can’t. How easy would it have been to dust off your hands and say ‘oh hell no, this is none of my dirty business?!’ Or how anxious she would have felt reaching out to me? Or how worried she would feel about how I would react? This woman is the definition of respect, strength, honesty and consideration. I was absolutely blown away by how much respect she showed me, but also that she showed herself. Sometimes the right thing to do is uncomfortable and it may seem like none of your business. But you can really change people’s lives when you’re guided by the mysterious wonders of girl code. 

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But then maybe there’s women out there that don’t get it. Or don’t care, or are too focused on doing them, that they kinda miss the essential nature of girl code. I’ve known a girl for a few years. I remember the first time I met her, I was mesmerized by her energy, intelligence, creativity and strength. She was a bad ass bitch! Over the years, she’s been someone in my life that I’ve looked up to and strived to be like.

I guess there’s really no right way to hook up with your friend’s ex-boyfriend…

But this time, it’s not just about girl code. It’s about the intersection of girl code and men’s place in it. Respect and honesty really will get you a long way in life. I received honesty, but was painfully disrespected by it.

I’m not angry or upset. In fact, I’m incredibly supportive of anyone who is pursuing their happiness. In this pursuit, we all have decisions to make. And if you make those decisions, knowing how they will affect you, and others around you, then you god damn stick by those decisions! This time, I was the one unknowingly and unwillingly brought back to that awkwardly horrible situation. At the end of the day, people will love whoever they love. But when you’re willing to sacrifice a friendship for that love, well that’s some Hollywood movie type shit there.

The bullshit is, this is all because of a man. I didn’t ask for this. These women didn’t ask for this. I don’t deserve this and neither do they. And even after all of this bullshit, you have the nerve to turn around and say that ‘this impacts me too.’ It’s shocking how some people simply cannot shock you any more.

It must be hard being a privileged, white male with a university education, a job that pays more money than some could ever dream of and the delusion that your life is so hard. Yes, you will never understand what it is like to be a woman. And it’s probably for the best because quite frankly, I don’t think you could handle it. But everyone on this earth is capable of understanding love. It’s just so sad that you choose not to.

Actually, I’d like to rephrase, this is all because of a boy. Because men that I know, love and respect, have the strength to take responsibility, to reach out, to be open and vulnerable with their emotions, and think about things other than their dicks and their ego.

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I understand if writing this post might sound accusing, though it is not my intention. I understand if this may be hurtful or confronting to read, yet I am simply expressing my feelings and experiences. I also understand that some may argue that it’s not all about me, and that I am being ignorant of other’s feelings and experiences. Yes, even privileged white men have their shit and I am well aware of that. But after giving so much of myself away, this is my way of reclaiming that and making a statement that it’s not good enough. Now is not your time.

It’s funny because I have well and truly moved on. The purpose of writing this post is to firstly, allow myself to process, understand and heal. Secondly, it is dedicated to all of the selfless women making a difference out there (yes, even the girl that hooked up with my ex is included in this list because she is an dedicated, hard working woman). Thirdly, it is to explore the intricacies of relationships and female relationships. And lastly, it is to reiterate that I will not tolerate being disrespected nor will I accept other women being treated in this manor. This is an ode to the girl code and to express how grateful I am for all of the supportive women and men in my life that are positively contributing to my life. I hope I can do the same for you.

Life’s good and it’s simple. Be kind, loving, honest, respectful, love your friends, love other women, love your boobs and love yourself enough to know that you are a fucking queen!!!

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50 Stupid Thoughts After A Break Up

Break ups are not easy. There’s no right way to break up and there’s certainly no ‘ideal’ break up situation. People’s feelings get hurt, there’s tears, anger, resentment, confusion and a lot of chocolate and alcohol involved after the fact. I consider myself a pretty intelligent human and if you’re reading this, then I absolutely know you’re an intelligent human (mainly because you decided to read my blog, and that my friend is a good choice). I think the hardest thing about breaking up for us intelligent people, is that we have fucking dumb thoughts. Like ridiculous, where did that even come from, thoughts. As I’m sure someone famous once said, writing eases the pain. And whilst I’m not in pain anymore, it’s a good reminder to myself and others that despite having these crazy thoughts, you’re doing your best at the time and that’s all that you can ask of yourself.

And I thought I would share with you 50 Stupid (and not so stupid) thoughts I had after my break up. 

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  1. Oh no. Am I ugly crying or cute crying?
  2. I didn’t see it ending like this.
  3. Why do breakups end how they start? Stomach knotted with butterflies and repeatedly asking your friends what you should reply to their text.
  4. What should I change my profile picture to?
  5. Now I don’t have to feel guilty about wanting to spend my Friday night alone watching Sex and the City.
  6. OMG I’m going to spend every Friday night alone watching Sex and the City.
  7. When do I get back on Tinder?
  8. Yay Tinder!
  9. Uh TInder….
  10. I’ll never love again.
  11. Maybe I have all the love I need.
  12. Maybe the lump on my neck is too much to handle.
  13. Maybe I’m too much to handle.
  14. Wow my friends are amazing. I’m so lucky.
  15. Being single is the best thing ever!
  16. Who am I without a boyfriend?
  17. If it’s meant to be, it’ll be.
  18. He’s obviously not the one for me.
  19. All I want in life is to be happy.
  20. What if I’m never happy again?
  21. I’m going to start running.
  22. Ooh look at me go, trying new things.
  23. Fuck this, I’m getting pizza.
  24. My friends tell me I deserve better… yea I do deserve better.
  25. Maybe I’m being too nice.
  26. Should I text them?
  27. Maybe I’ll just post an story on Instagram.
  28. OMG they sent me a snapchat!
  29. I shouldn’t reply.
  30. Fuck, I just replied.
  31. I’m just going to leave my phone at home and go for a run.
  32. Nah, I’ll just go and pick up some pizza.
  33. I’m going to focus on work.
  34. And study. I am a total boss.
  35. Wow my life is so great.
  36. *goes to bed at night* I have no one.
  37. I’m handling this so well.
  38. Come on heart, catch up.
  39. There’s a cute dog, they will appreciate a snap of this.
  40. Oh right, we broke up.
  41. They would look so good in – oh wait, yep, still broken up.
  42. We can still be friends, right?
  43. Why do people keep asking me about them?
  44. I’m angry, hurt, disappointed.
  45. But I don’t have hard feelings.
  46. I don’t have room in my life for negativity, hatred or unkindness.
  47. I miss you.
  48. It’s going to be OK.
  49. When am I going to have sex again?
  50. I am enough (not a stupid thought).

Valentines Day? Newly Single? Take Yourself Out!

Valentine’s Day sucks. Especially if you’re newly single and trying to piece back together the fragments of your heart and remember who you are without a man in your life (woah dramatic right?). But this isn’t a depressing post. This is a fucking happy post. Life has been crazy recently and I’m sure yours has been too (I’m suspecting there’s something in the air). I feel like maybe it’s February, just as you’re getting settled into 2018, February comes to slap you in the face and say ‘wake up bitch, don’t you dare get comfortable!’

Well after my ‘Me Day’ I am wide awake and refreshed, in love with myself and proud of who I am.

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I thought there might be a few others out there who may be having a rough time at the moment, and I get it, it sucks. But it’s not going to last forever, and it certainly isn’t the end of the world. So I wanted to tell you about my day and hopefully inspire you to do the same, and love yourself that little bit harder in your time of need.

“Hi, you’ve reached Adelaide. Sorry I can’t take your call right now. It’s ADELAIDE DAY today and I’m out taking care of myself. Leave a message and I’ll get back to you whenever I feel like it.”

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Cancel Work

I work casually, however lately, work has consumed my life. It’s good though, with so much craziness in my life it’s been a great distraction. I love my work and my work mates. But my Adelaide Day meant not coming in to work. I emailed my boss and was completely honest. Hey, I know I’m supposed to work tomorrow, but my life has been a bit crazy lately and I really just need a day to gather my thoughts and look after myself. Do you mind if I have an Adelaide Day? Because I work with such amazing and supportive people, she said yes and just like that, my day was free.

Sleep In

I’ve recently been converted to a morning person which means that if I wake up after 7am I feel like I’ve wasted my day. I love waking up early, watching the sunrise and getting a head start on my day. But this is Adelaide Day, and Adelaide required a sleep in. I slept until 9:30am and honestly, felt so rested. It was simply glorious waking up without an alarm, with sunlight shining through my window.

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Beach & Sunshine

There’s nothing that says ‘I love you Adelaide’ like a dip in the ocean and a nap on the beach. I headed down to soak up some rays with Dylan. There’s something so medicating about the ocean that instantly washes away your problems and invigorates you with energy and life. I laid in the sun just a little longer than I normally would and felt so relaxed. When I got home and looked in the mirror, I felt like I’d been at a spa treatment all day. I felt sleepy, relaxed, smelled of coconut and my hair was a mess.

A Bite To Eat

I love going out for lunch and I love going out solo. I went to one of my favourite cafe’s, ordered my favourite meal, with my favourite coffee and wrote in my journal. You’ve gotta look after your taste-buds and caffeinate.

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Retail Therapy

Nothing says treat yourself like a new outfit or two. Even if it’s just trying on clothes to get some ideas, I love a little window shopping. And I love it even more when I find gorgeous clothes that make me feel like the Queen I am (or think I am – depends if you get me on a confident day or not). I bought some gorgeous flowy pants, some crop tops and some sparkly underwear for Mardi Gras (which I’m way too excited about). Sometimes you just have to tap your card and not look at the total – that’s future you’s problem.

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Cooking

A little known fact about me is that I absolutely love cooking, I just rarely find the time or inspiration. But on my Me Day, there was no excuse. I made some delicious burritos for Tiger and Chloe. Plus we had an extravagant cheese board with a few too many beers. Cutting, chopping and creating something delicious and nutritious for your body and tastebuds sure is rewarding.

Sex & The City Marathon

Did you know that Sex & The City can cure anything? Yep. Fact. By chance, a SATC marathon was on TV. Naturally, we stayed up til midnight watching it. One beer per episode. By the time it reached midnight, I was pretty tipsy and feeling pretty damn amazing.

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I know it’s not always possible to have an extraordinary Me Day. There’s work, prior commitments, homework…. the thing is that in our crazy lives, these things will always be there. Sometimes you just have to cancel your day and show yourself a little love. Maybe I just didn’t do this enough when I was in a relationship. Take some time for me. But hey, at least I won’t forget it any time soon. And I think it’s something we have to do every now and again. Plus, who doesn’t love a SATC marathon?!

Be strong. Be kind. Be kind to yourself. And have a break. You deserve it.