There’s something to be said for coming half way around the globe and discovering what you don’t want. You also get to know what it is you do want, what it is you need, what your soul is craving at this moment in time. Before leaving the UK I had so many stories and projections about what I needed, about where we would find ourselves, the life we could lead, the home we could have but discovering that we needed to release our hopes and expectations has been a blessing. It means surrendering, it means rebuilding, it means asking the true question of what do we feel right now, where do we want to go right now and what is it that we need which I believe is something we need to ask ourselves more often... I crave the ocean, to be immersed in nature, to be surrounded by elements stronger than myself and have my energy, my body and my soul washed over with the immensity of it all. I left 2019 so willingly, starting 2020, a new year and a new decade in a different place, leaving behind everything to press refresh and to reconnect with my soul, create new stories, dreams and plans. Life’s been busy since having my little one so I crave that space and now we’ve reassessed our plan, I’ve no doubt I’ll find it. It’s so easy to feel like our plans, our hopes have to be set, have to be the way we first create them to be and when you find yourself somewhere different it can be tricky changing that but opening yourself to vulnerably asking what you truly want and need can be the most rewarding thing to do.
I wish I had an obligatory photograph that sums up #Bali in a nutshell but the truth is I don’t. We didn’t come here to see all the sights, the temples and beaches we came to scope out the landscape, the energy, the vibe with a view to staying longer term and truth be told we didn’t find what we had expected. We spent 3 days this week driving around the island visiting different places hoping to find a home but what we found was that much of the island has been stripped back of Balinese culture and built into tourist havens of shopping and drinking which made my heart sink. Balinese people are amongst the sweetest most helpful, the island is beautiful - away from the hustle and bustle - I just don’t feel the emotional connection to the land I had hoped for. Husband doesn’t either. So we’re restless... Today we found a small place in Ubud we’re going to stay for the next week to rest, recharge and reassess where is next for us but one thing I’m learning all over again is to listen with intent not only to my body but to my intuition and when it whispers - shouts or makes your tummy feel all fizzy - you just have to follow your heart and listen, even if it does take you around the world ✨
Looking into the eye of an elephant is a spiritual experience. It feels so intimate. And it reminds me of the barriers we all hold up when we look into each other’s eyes. Because with an elephant there are none. There is emotion. A lot of it. There is wisdom, beauty and I felt, a little sadness. Which reminds me of myself. I’ve no idea why I’ve always held a little sadness in my heart but it exists. And it enhances my compassion for the world, of which I have so so much for these animals. Today was hard. I’m finally feeling as though I’m unwinding years of tension, of holding myself to certain standards, living in a way that wasn’t 100% suited to who I am or how I want to spend the time I have in this life. A part of me misses home, having one, having routine, having safety and the comfort of it. A part of me is glad to have shed all of that to step out of fear and into love, into finding and truly living life again. We visited the elephant sanctuary because Yvielao wanted to meet the elephants and help bathe them, I left feeling as though I had met an old soul who reflected back at me what I needed to surrender to, release and heal. I’m so grateful. 🐘 And to #maerimelephanthome thank you for the experience of a lifetime and for keeping safe these sacred mothers ❤️
Not at all overwhelmed by the grandeur of it all or intimidated by the traditions that follow little is taking everything in her stride. She’s soaking in our family history, our ancestoral city, the temples, traditions and ceremony, being amidst 80 family members close and distant, new sights, smells and sounds all with such grace. She loves an adventure and new surroundings as much as I do. It’s only been the jet lag for her that’s held us both back a little. Her new found joy of riding in the back of tuk tuks and enjoying the shiny vibrancy of temples beats an hour or two of Paw Patrol with me any day. The past few days have been a fast paced ride of family reunions, sleepless nights and my firm favourite - coconut sticky rice and fresh mango. A rather nice combo. Tomorrow brings in a new year and a new decade and I couldn’t imagine a more different and fitting start to that than this big adventure for our little family so here’s to fresh beginnings and a lust for life for us all 💕
We can finally breathe again. Bangkok is like a supermarket trip with a toddler running free - it’s a game of dodge and weave whilst trying to watch your feet, your direction and your child before something terrible happens like a puddle and wailing in isle 7 after knocking shelves of beans down. Not so fun (swipe to see pic) Chiang Mai (a family home of sorts) is something else entirely. And little knows it. She’s an old soul who asked me on arrival if this is where she lived when she was a princess. It’s entirely possible I said as I’m sure she’s been here before. She’s at home in this city as much as I am and as always Chiang Mai welcomes us into her slow pace and warmth just when we need it. We’re home. For now. Have you ever had a home away from home? (Or knocked over beans on isle 7 for that matter? 😆)
It’s done. Last night we said a ceremonial goodbye to our home. To all of the things we loved about the view out of the window we used to count stars, find the moon and check out the weather each morning, to the rooms, the stars on the ceiling, to the place where this little one took her first steps, her first dance, her first bite of solid food. And we welcomed in our next chapter as a family untethering from our home, our town, from expectations and the norm. And I’m feeling all the feels, sadness, excitement, love, overwhelm, trepidation, exhaustion from packing up a whole home whilst working and doing christmas and birthdays. It’s been a lot but I know we’re on our way somewhere super exciting for each of us and for different reasons. The main thing I want right now though is a hot shower, a decent nights sleep and about an hours worth of snuggles from my girl. Scheduled, refuelling for a tired soul. First stop: Bangkok, Thailand.