To Build a Home...

Yes, I am referencing the title of the song by The Cinematic Orchestra with this blog title and truth be told it is because I've sat staring back and forth between my laptop screen and aimlessly dazing out the rain splashed windows of the house I grew up in thinking about what I should title this or how to even discuss a topic I think so many of us in our late 20s living in society today can relate to. 

If you follow my personal Instagram and have done for a while you'll know I spent some time in 2021/2022 living in Bali, Indonesia. My time there was magical but also quite tumultuous. From sore ribs to broken teeth to lost credit cards and water damaged go pros it felt like one thing after another. People warned me that if Bali didn't want you there or didn't feel it was your time she would let you know and while that was blatantly obvious in my case I didn't really want to accept it, until after 3 months I finally decided I would head home to Ireland. 

I was met with a whole new set of struggles once I got home which I spent pretty much the guts of a year and a half dealing with and healing through. Despite all of that in that time I convinced myself my home in Ireland was my home, I was set on doing the most to build my life here and traveling to warmer climates when it suited me. I was considering spending a portion of my 2023/2024 winter in Costa Rica but something in my body just screamed Bali, I was being called back there. 

In January at the start of this year I set off to head back for the first time in two years. I didn't sleep a wink the entire journey, I am still unsure whether that was the adrenalin of actually heading back or from the stress of queuing to check my bag in for almost an hour and a half and then having to repack all three of my bags because they were so overweight. But from when I stepped off the plane I can't really even explain the sense of "home" that rushed through my body. I felt slightly pathetic feeling that too given how short the time i'd previously spent there in retrospect actually was. 

I guess in my time back there these feelings and thoughts led me to reflect on the true meaning of home but also how home can be more than one place and also what a privilege it is to feel homesick for two places on opposite sides of the world. Whilst it is a privilege I think my love for my home in Ireland quite currently comes with a level of sadness. 

In May (aka next month lol) I am going to turn 28 and right now the word "Home" to me feels like it should be a place I am building a life for myself, surrounding myself with likeminded people, opening myself to the opportunity to meet someone i'll fall in love with, being in a place that allows me to explore my passions for skating, surfing and building my business around those things everyday. In my time here over the previous two years I tried to convince myself those things were here, I considered moving to different parts of the West of the country to be closer to the surf and even viewed rooms but something in my gut each time just screamed "NO" - So I listened and stayed home but weirdly that definition of home above doesn't feel like Dublin either. 

The unfortunate reality here is that due to the high cost of renting, housing and just living in general, living in my childhood home has just made the most sense up until now. Before I went away again this time it hadn't really felt like a hinder on my growth or progression but this time being back it feels as though someone has put a lid on the jar of my little world and I am just bursting to get out. A harsh reality has been the fact that most of my community (one of my other biggest values) have taken the emigration route and built their version of home elsewhere also, thus including my sister who before we both went away two years ago was the person I lived with, spoke to everyday, did everything with. My sister has now built her own version of this with new people living abroad and that is not me being resentful, I am so happy for her and her housemates are so beautiful and kind but the reality for me being at home is my friends that are still here either live far away, have partners and/or children or are also planning to leave. I love Ireland I really do, there is no country like it in the world. Emerald green landscapes, rugged stone walls, roaring coastlines, A language that we've managed to keep alive against all odds, pints of Guinness with friends, the music, the art, the poetry and most importantly the people. Part of me thinks Bali forcing me out the last time I was there was so that I had to really learn to love and appreciate everything that makes me Irish. The beauty of this country alone led me to believe I'd be one of the ones to stay home and fight, I'd think to myself how can we overcome the countries issues when the generation being hit so hard by them aren't even here? But being away again made me realise it feels SO hard to build a life that feels truly in alignment with my goals and purpose here right now and again I am 28 this year, I have very little responsibility in terms of not being married and not having kids or a mortgage or any of those stereotypical "responsibilities" so an enjoyable life with basics like my own space or being able to enjoy myself without it costing me shouldn't feel so hard to obtain and quite honestly I am exhausted from trying to be one of the ones that "stays" just to prove something. 

Bringing it back to The Cinematic Orchestra and their song - On my third last night in Bali this time around I was teaching a skate workshop I held for the SWB community. I without even thinking played that song as our cool down. I needed something slow and my house mate had been playing it a few days previously in her room and it came to mind on the spot. It only hit me as I sat stretching with a group of people in part of a community that since two years ago made Bali feel like home to me that I was leaving AGAIN and a wave of emotion rushed through me. 

Combined with lots of other things happening back home in Ireland for me right now I am feeling the urge to fly the nest. My Saturn return is almost here too so while not one of these things was on my bingo card for 2024 I am heavily leaning into surrender and trusting the universe has my back on whatever path I take. 

For now all I know is my definition of "Home" as a 28 year old and that I am here in Ireland for the next 5 months or so at least and from there lets just see... I will keep you in the loop. But also a reminder that changing your mind is ok and listening to the signals our bodies give us is important. 

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