Wednesday, 8 October 2014

Where I'm at...

I think I need to reboot my plans to work towards a "new" me, but then again I have made a lot of changes in my life, for various reasons, so I thought I'd share them with you!
The most amazing thing, to me, is that I am in love with the most wonderful man and he loves me, too! Graham has been a friend for almost 5 years now, & we knew each other for 4 years when we finally managed to start dating - after a very delayed 2nd date we made up for lost time, & when my live-in nanny job in London ended at the start of December 2013, I came to stay with him for a few weeks... I did secure and start a new position in January, but it soon became clear that my new employers and I had very different ideas about my role, and conversations didn't resolve anything, so I left after three weeks and returned to Staffordshire where Graham asked me to look locally for a job.

Graham and others encouraged me to put my experience to good use in a new way and after hours of work (with lots of help and support from my lovely man) I applied for a role as a Children's and Family Worker for the Methodist Church in nearby Biddulph. I was so excited when I was offered the job! I actually couldn't think straight for a moment & had to remember to breathe! I love this new role in my life and enjoy the connections I am making and the difference I feel in working for a church I love and respect so much! I am working with some wonderful people and am making friends in the community, both where I work and where I live!
Two of the first people to extend friendship when I first came to live in Stoke-on-Trent were Graham's dear friends, Chris and Katherine, with whom we have spent many wonderful days and nights playing board games, card games, eating great food and sharing some terrific conversations!

My Dad was born & raised in nearby Tunstall (part of Stoke-on-Trent) and it was through his cousins, Bev and Bernard, that I initially met Graham, and when we first started dating they were very encouraging and supportive. I love that I get to spend more time with them as Bev is like a big sister to me and it is so good to have folk who've known me since childhood around, as having grown up on the other side of the world is not that conducive to having life-long-friends you can spend time with.

There are, of course, challenges associated with making such life-changing decisions, and both Graham and I have a lot of hobbies, interests and "stuff"... I am trying to reduce what I have so I can move everything into the home we share, whilst Graham is also trying to sort through his belongings to make more space for those things I currently have in storage. Then there's the working out of our routines, with different ideas of what is "normal" and different tastes, habits and routines. We are finding it so important to talk through everything and not judge. Easier said than done, but I think we're managing to do it more than we don't! I also miss my many friends in London, and the opportunities which living in that amazing city gave me... I especially miss my London Culture Seekers and LOTNA (Sci Fi) friends with whom I spent most weekends pursuing our common love of things like history, architecture, theatre, cider, sci fi, cosplay and so many other things in between!

Graham's family have welcomed me with open arms and I feel such a part of their lives... His gorgeous nephew, Liam, is the cheekiest, brightest boy with wonderfully red hair! I get along very well with Graham's parents, brother and sister-in-law which is so awesome!
I love the skills I am adding to my abilities at work, I love the way I am using my gifts for bringing my faith to many new people and supporting others in their Christian life. I love the opportunities which lie before me and the love and support I have from Graham, family, friends and people I knew from my days contibuting to the life of the Uniting Church in Australia.

I love the things Graham and I share in common, from our love of our Christian faith, science fiction, good drama, comedy, documentaries, intelligent debate, performance & the technicality of productions, music, reading, spending time with friends and family... I love the things I am learning from him and the way he takes an interest in my own love of history, craft and literature.

I love my life and it is ready to take the next step towards loving my body and my own personality more... I might be better than I was, but I know I can take care of myself better and be more able to serve as a lay worker, as a friend, as a family member and as a partner to a wonderful man!

Watch this space!