So…first blog post off the ranks. I better make this a good one. Uh-oh, the pressure is on.
Okay, firstly, welcome to Curated by Cammi.
I’m Cammi and I am a 29-year-old Melburnian living in Perth, Australia. I have a background in educational publishing, and I am now working as a freelance editor and writer, which I enjoy immensely. Quite frankly, I am living the life that I have always wanted for myself – but this hasn’t always been the case.
I thought I would focus my first blog post for Curated by Cammi on how I got to this point of my life. But to do that, I will need to rewind slightly back to my twenty-eighth birthday.
Growing up, I always had it in my head that my twenty-eighth year was going to be spectacular: a year of epic proportions. There was something about that number that I had always gravitated towards, most likely due to the fact that my birthday falls on the twenty-eighth.
However, on the day that I turned 28, I came to the disappointing realisation that life wasn’t going the way I had envisioned. The baffling thing was that there wasn’t inherently wrong in my life; in fact, the reverse: everything had gone according to plan. I was engaged to my best friend, I had a job in the industry that I had always wanted to work in, I lived in a great apartment, went on yearly holidays, had a busy social life, yada yada yada. On paper, everything sounded promising; on paper, I was the ideal candidate.
There was something lacking…missing…something I couldn’t quite put my finger on. All I knew for certain was that I was growing increasingly unhappy being in the same place.
And perhaps that was the crux of it. For a long time, there were milestones to reach and maybe life had become static for just a little too long. I was feeling restless being in the same place – in a metaphorical and physical sense.
Happiness is a funny beast. All that we can definitively say about the matter is that it is subjective and unfortunately it’s not a simple case of ticking off a pre-defined checklist. If only it were that easy. For me, personally, happiness was growth and I had stalled in the most remarkable fashion. I felt encumbered by everyday life and didn’t feel like I was the best version of ‘me’ anymore. I was floating along aimlessly, content with life but never quite satisfied. At first I thought it had been just a little too long in between holidays and that a trip away would clear my mind and re-energise me – but to no avail. I came back even more aware that something needed to change.
It seems crazy to voluntarily leave a ‘good’ situation but when that so-called ‘good’ situation makes you feel like a former shell of yourself, then it may just be time to reassess. Looking back, every day felt routine, mundane and robotic and it was difficult to feel genuine happiness because I equated happiness to be being somewhere else or at least doing something else.
So here we are, after a lot of waiting and incessant thumb-twiddling, my partner (now husband) and I, now Perthians (Perthites?)…which is an unexpected curveball, to say the least. When I was dreaming about faraway places, I was picturing the graffitied neighbourhoods of Berlin, the neon lights of Tokyo and the bright lights of New York. There was never a stage where I thought I would be leaving the cosmopolitan laneways of Melbourne for the sunny beaches of Perth, but, alas, the universe has a strange way of dishing up the unexpected for us unsuspecting souls.
I love my new home, which confirms that it was the right decision to leave Melbourne – at least for now. It also makes me realise that I have changed as a person. Put me here a few years ago and I would have been immune to the latent charms of this sunny state but Perth has offered me what I needed most: a sanctuary; a haven; a place where I can be free to find and rediscover myself. I now feel better placed and motivated – it could be all of the Vitamin D – to be a better person, which is something that I was in need of because for a long time, I didn’t feel as though I was a ‘good’ person to be around.
Moving away was integral to my internal gratification. I needed to work on myself and that required leaving home and the people I love most. I had to leave behind the monotony and constraints of a life that I wasn’t completely satisfied with – through no fault of anyone but my own – in order to return to the path that I had inadvertently strayed from.
Time had always been the bane of my existence and there never seemed to be enough of it. I used to come home from work completely burnt out and then get annoyed because I didn’t have the energy to work on the things that I felt passionate about. Free time was quickly filled up by family commitments, social activities, general life admin…not leaving any time to focus on myself.
But now I have time in spades. And I’m utilising it for the things that I’ve always wanted to do. I did a short solo stint around Eastern Europe; I started a freelance business; I’m spending more time on my writing and developing my craft; I started yoga and swimming lessons; I got married. I’m pursuing things that I felt unable or incapable of doing so before.
And I am beyond excited to be starting this blog, an idea that I’ve been toying around with for a long time but never felt able to do, whether it was due to lack of time or lack of motivation, I’m not quite sure. But here it is.
I feel reinvigorated again and I want to invite you into my imperfect world – one where I can share my musings on travel, life, work, books, inspiration, and everything else in between – and above all one where I am still trying to figure it all out. Just like everybody else.
My twenty-eighth year did turn out to be an epic year for me: it was the year that I questioned my self and admitted that I wasn’t happy with my situation. It was hard to reach that conclusion because I almost felt like I had somehow lost against the game of life. But I needed to be honest about wanting more or, at least, something different and to start making the necessary changes to leading a life that was true and right for me.
It took some time but I have rediscovered my path.
Welcome to Curated by Cammi. Enjoy the ride – I know I certainly will.