Well, today was an extremely hard day and the biggest test to my faith in this whole situation yet. It was my final goodbye, and of course it was the hardest of them all. Saying goodbye to the two people I love more than anything else in the world was heart wrenching. I apologize to the people who watched me with tears streaming down my face during security checks. Sorry I still have no clue how to keep it together after 25 years of life.
I walked away trying to remind myself of all the reasons I decided to do this in the first place, but really I was thinking, "What am I doing? Am I strong enough for this? I'm now officially alone". I sat down at my seat still in tears trying not to think about what I had just committed myself to and was then overwhelmed by the support and love shown by everyone via texts, phone calls and social media. And then I realized, that even from over 10,000 miles away, I still have hundreds of people back home I can always count on. I am literally in tears reading all of your sweet messages and well wishes and feel completely at peace with my decision to do this.
My emotions have been borderline unstable the last few days, and if I could legally diagnose myself as crazy, I would. I am terrified, sad, anxious, happy, excited and hopeful, all at the same time. If that's not a recipe for an emotional breakdown I don't know what is.
But now, as I sit here waiting to board my 15 plus hour flight to Melbourne, I am getting so so SO excited. I could cry at the thought of what an amazing experience I am about to have. What am I worried about? Everything will absolutely be fine, and I'm going to have a life not many people have at 25, or ever for that matter. Pushing back a "normal life" for this adventure was potentially the best decision I've ever made. Plus, I'm already surrounded by people with accents, so that's refreshing :). If you know me at all, and my obsession with accents, you probably have no problem believing that I've already fallen in love 3 times since Chicago. I think I will be just fine.
Of course I am feeling infinitely better from just a few days ago. I'm happy, calm and still too excited to sleep! First let me start by saying you don't know exhaustion until you've traveled for 35 hours straight and then need to adjust to a 13 hour time difference. Woof. Luckily though, I'm young and my body bounces back from borderline toxic situations pretty easily. Fly time, which was a total of 25 hours, was much better than expected, and everything else went well, all things considered. I landed in Perth to be greeted by Ben and the girls. I instantly felt better. Finally, someone I recognized, even if in reality they were still strangers too. Even better yet was the drive home where I was surrounded by palm trees and beautiful modern houses everywhere. It reminded me a lot of what you would see in rich California. So far, in my two days here, I have drank lots of wine, eaten delicious meals, swam in the ocean, drank amazing Australian beer (arguably better than my beloved fat tire), been extremely loved by Lola and Emilie, and spent a considerable time with their current french au pair Juliette, who is so incredibly marvelous. Needless to say, it's been an amazing few days and I feel completely at ease being here. I unfortunately have no pictures to post as of yet, but promise to be better about bringing my camera or phone with me on any adventures in the next few days. This weekends tasks include: going out for a big family breakfast, go shopping, learn to drive on the opposite side of the road, and try vegemite. Stay tuned :)!