I will never forget the feeling I had sitting in the airport waiting for our flight to Amsterdam. Our life in New York was about to be behind us and our new life was set to start. I had said goodbye to my family and friends only I didn’t have any of the emotions I expected.
When I originally wrote this entry, my first draft said I felt free, bubbling with excitement. But when I thought about it, honestly I felt smug. I had run away from my emptiness. I had done it. I could be happy and fulfilled and not have to deal with the whys. Once again I could push it down and get on with it. I honestly and stupidly believed that I could leave the depression behind me. I would wake up tomorrow and no longer be broken. I know this was naive, but I needed to believe it. I couldn’t cope with how selfish this move actually was. I uprooted my family, took my daughter out of an amazing school, just so I could run away from the same feeling I had been running from for most of my life. I was sure this move would fix me. But could I really be fixed? Now there was no turning back, no way to stop what I had started.
Landing in Amsterdam that Friday morning was a mixture of excitement, denial and a feeling I was super cool. I was about to start my European life and I felt sophisticated. Life in Amsterdam was great at first. Everything was new and shiny and exciting. Even I felt shiny. The world was wonderful. We lived in a temporary place while I looked to find an apartment. It was tiny and we all slept in the one bed but it was fun. Real life eventually set in. We found an apartment, our stuff arrived from NYC and I had spent my time setting up the house. I took my daughter to school each morning, worked on the apartment then picked her up each afternoon. That routine got tired so fast.
I was ready to dive into life and be this new person but, but now I had no job, no friends and nothing was familiar. It was actually worse! I no longer had this busy life to hid behind and I was no longer the woman I thought I was. I had no idea who I was. I was depressed but functioning in NYC but I completely fell apart in Amsterdam. What was my purpose? I was a mom to a daughter in school all day; and the wife to a husband who traveled. What did I actually bring to the table now? I was hollow again. Everything I was running from in New York was here with me in Amsterdam. How did this happen?
I wanted a change and created the biggest shake up to make it happen, and now I was thinking, shit. My location changed but the emptiness was the same. It was still with me only this time I had nowhere to hide. I couldn’t mask it with work, or friends. I had to look at it each day and it was too much. I wanted to go home and go back to easy and boring. Being empty was easy, as much as I wanted to run away I couldn’t. I was paralysed with fear at the thought of what I was about to go through.
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