Animals & Wildlife Magazine

Reflections of Germany - the "growing Up" Part...

By Kc2610 @kc2610
There is only one more full day of riding left in Germany - I leave tomorrow! As I have said before, this trip has been a huge growing up experience for me, and I have opened my eyes to realize a lot of things about myself and life. Sounds very philosophical doesn't it?

Where I have been living for the past three months...
this is where the thinking happens!

Previously, I had always been afraid of my own company. Stupid I know, because since I was 16 I have been practically living alone so should be used to my own company. That hasn't been the case though, and I would do anything and go anywhere to avoid finding myself at home with nothing to do.
What I have learned here, is that being alone and having nothing to do does not equate to being bored and lonely. Being alone is time to self-reflect, think about things in your life that are good/bad, things you have to do in the next few days and how you are going to do them, and come up with new ideas that only come from quietening your mind. Wow I sound like a yogi now, but I'm serious! I had never before given myself time to listen to what I was feeling or think about things I was going to do. I always had to be distracted by activity (riding, gym, running) or with someone else's life (visiting friends and going out). Now I realize that is why I did so many stupid things, nothing serious, but just forgot things all the time, was never organized, always late, just immature things like that. It makes complete sense to me now - you can't expect to do anything right if no thought process goes into doing it.

Washing will never be a chore again
after that three months of washing clothes
in a shower...

Being forced to be self-sufficient and survive in a foreign country where I can't speak the language was quite a challenge for me in the beginning. But I did find it refreshing to be removed from all the distractions in England that were stopping me from realising what was fundamentally wrong with how I was living. A big step for me was deleting Facebook, which I realised was only making me feel more lonely every time I logged on. Seeing what all my "friends" were doing and how much fun they were having going out and partying or on holiday only made me feel like I didn't have any friends.
Ever since I moved here I have never had a lot of friends, as I have moved around so much and am always occupied with the horses so miss out on a lot of opportunities. So seeing other people with all of their friends made me feel like a complete loser pretty much. But as soon as I deleted Facebook, I began to see that I did have friends, they were just friends in a different way. They were people that supported me and made the effort to contact me outside of Facebook, because they genuinely cared about me. Sure I may not be heading off to Ibiza with them to party, but they are there for me and I am there for them in any situation. And some friends I thought I had, that I would always go running off to instead of staying at home by myself, seem like they never knew I even existed once Facebook was gone. It is a very important thing to know who your real friends are, and it can be very surprising too.

My dinner for one :)

In this time I've had to "think", I have planned my next year and my goals, and have a rough five-year plan in mind. The direction I'm heading is so clear again, a bit like what it was when I was still in Australia, where my family played a huge role in helping me find my way. Without family physically there to support you (do food shopping, cook dinner, eat dinner with, clean house, keep you company) it seems like a whole different ball game, but I'm getting better! The first year that I had to do my own food shopping and make my own dinner to eat by myself, I thought it was the most terrible and lonely experience in the world. Now I can just eat dinner alone in this hotel room while doing thing for my blog or just reading bits and bobs, or happily go off to the beach restaurant and order myself some dinner in a foreign language, and sit there alone while hundreds of people all in groups surround me. Achievement or what!
I guess the big eye-opener for me out of all this is that I first need to be happy with my own company before I can be truly happy with anyone else's. It is something my mom is ALWAYS telling me, but I never truly got it. I just thought she didn't want me to have a boyfriend haha. But now I see that being in a relationship when I am so insecure about my own life just doesn't work, because the person you are with will never give you what you need to be happy, because happiness needs to come from within. No one gives it to you. Hence me no longer having a boyfriend, but that's another story!

When I was feeling low I could always rely on
watching Seb and Chad play in the paddock
to make me smile :)

So I will be interested to see how long this frame of mind stays with me in England - I hope it doesn't change! I will make sure it doesn't change actually, and hope that this has been a lesson that I perhaps only have to learn once in life.

The beach - a place I go to nearly every day
(either on a morning run or after work) to relax,
think, and of course get a tan ;) It is now
my favorite place.

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