When I look at all of things I’ve experienced over the last few years on my Route To Wellness, I realise just how much I’ve changed as a person, physically, mentally, and it’s a continual evolvement. So it stands to reason that as I grow and change then my goals grow and change accordingly.
I used to think that if I was well enough to leave the house and look after myself, that I’d be so happy that I wouldn’t care what else I achieved. And in a way I was right, that bit never gets old for me. But it doesn’t mean I don’t have other desires. If anything spending my late 20’s unable to do anything focused me in a way nothing else could have done, pushed me out of my complacency. Yet it also gave me a sense of inner-peace and fulfilment that I’d never experienced before. I was no longer constantly bored, unhappy or restless like I was before I got ill. These are two really different ways of feeling, and seemingly quite confusing to try and balance. Do I go with the part of me that is so happy to be alive and independent that I just float from experience to experience feeling just fine? Or do I go with the part of me that absolutely knows there are no limits, and that every day is an opportunity to expand my horizons? It’s something I’ve been thinking of a lot lately. A contradiction that gets more apparent a I grow in physical strength and mental confidence.
So a couple of weeks ago I took a good long look at my life. I saw a flat I didn’t love living in, but that was okay. I saw a job that was alright – but not fulfilling me in any way. Basically I saw a life that was fine. And that was the problem. Fine is not Fine. Not when you’ve sat watching from the sidelines for so long. Not when you’ve beaten the odds in so many ways. Not when every single part of life was fought for so hard. Then a fine life is far from fine. Then complacency becomes a trap all in itself. When you know better than you are actually doing-then fine is very far from fine indeed. I know what I’m capable of, I know I created every part of the life I was looking at. I also knew that by some people’s standards I was doing pretty well considering where I’d been a few years previously. It’s probably enough to go from being reliant on others for everything, to total independence, it’s probably quite good to go from constantly shaking and being unable to look people in the eye to presenting 6 hour Live Shows on tv. I don’t really have anything else to compare it to so I can’t say for sure. it’s probably enough to say I’ve achieved something after long-term illness. It’s just not enough as far as I’m concerned.
So I quit my job and I gave my notice on my flat. I didn’t really know what would happen after that. Would I find somewhere else to live? Would I ever work in tv again? Would I end up unemployed and back in Newcastle? Maybe, but at least I was able-bodied this time. To be honest I was so excited by the prospect of what might happen that I forgot to worry about it… Maybe that was what I was missing when I was floating along playing it safe…
A funny thing happened whilst I was busy with all this exciting uncertainty stuff…I had to work out two weeks notice at my old channel, in my first week’s notice I was offered a place to live more lovely than anywhere I’ve ever rented. It came to me, I hadn’t even started looking. That was nice. Then 5 days after I left my old channel I was given a job better than anything I could possibly imagined. It has all the bits I loved about my old place of work, and everything I was looking for outside of it. In the space of a week I moved to my dream flat and started my dream job. My life completely changed in 7 days. Even as a self-professed eternal optimist this is quite staggering to me. I seem to have leapt straight into everything I have ever wanted. I like the view from here.
So if Fine is not Fine, then perhaps leaping with my eyes closed was the only option. It certainly worked out for me on this occasion. I also think that things happened so fast for me in both my living and working life because I didn’t waste any time stressing that I’d made a stupid choice, or that I was going to fail or be unemployed forever. Not because I’m super-brave or filled with unshakable self-belief. It’s because I genuinely didn’t think about it. I just didn’t care. I still don’t. That type of worrying is irrelevant to my life. Unemployment statistics don’t scare me-because if I believed in similar medical statistics then I’d still be in a wheelchair. The idea of a pension of lack thereof is not a concern, I’m no longer capable of thinking that far ahead. All of these factors made it easy for me to go from Fine to Here. And my Here, the Where I now stand in is far from fine. It’s incredible, and I’ll just keep leaping towards bigger and better. I think that’s what I got out of the chair for really… And if you’re reading this and your on your way out of your own chair or bed, just know that leaping without fear is the biggest pay off your Life After will ever give you-and that I’m with you all the way…