I feel so excited about life! I don’t know what medicine Malta administered me with, but it was strong stuff!
I haven’t felt this way in a long time, but right now, my vision is so clear. I have no set itinerary, no ‘five year goal’ and no plan of action, yet I have never felt surer of what I want, and more importantly, what I don’t want.
I don’t want the high-flying career.
I don’t want the Disney-inspired happily ever after.
I don’t want to be someone’s ‘other half.’
I don’t want children (I tried to find a way of putting that less bluntly, but it is what it is – sorry!).
I don’t want to take ownership of a property that will eventually take ownership of me with its constant need for repair and improvements.
I don’t want to fall into the rut of working, paying bills, and repeating. I want something meaningful in-between.
Quite simply, I just want to be happy. Happy by my own standards, and no-one else’s.
I want to run.
I want to write.
I want to travel.
I want to meet people who inspire me.
I want to hear stories that educate and impact me.
I want to do the Midnight Sun Run in Iceland .
I want to marvel at Digital Art Museum in Tokyo.
I want to island hop around Greece.
I want to eat good food that honours my body.
I want to dress how the hell I want: bright yellow trousers, and heels with Adidas joggers.
I want to step out of my comfort zone and fill my life with the richness of new experiences.
I want to feel free, and since escaping the shackles of society’s imposed ‘norms,’ I have never felt freer.
I don’t often blog or talk about my breakup. I prefer to keep that part of my life private to avoid the inevitable judgement and brainless gossip.
My breakup wasn’t dramatic or steeped in animosity; it just quite simply didn’t work.
As I have said before, we are still friends (most of the time...!), still own a home together, and still refer to one another as husband and wife. (I think our unusual friendship dynamic works so well because neither of us are interested in meeting anybody else at this moment in time.)
During my time in Malta, I blogged about our need to refrain from labelling relationships that don‘t work out as ‘failed.’ It’s also time that we stopped classifying the departure of such relationships as ‘the end.’
The period of mourning a relationship is intense, but I firmly believe that everything happens for a reason.
My relationship was meant to end. The ceasing of my relationship with my ex marked the beginning of a beautiful new relationship: the relationship that I have with myself.
I really got to know myself again in Malta, and I have been high on life ever since.
There is so much pressure to adhere to the ‘Instagram life,’ but we need to stop looking at all of this pretence through rose-tinted glasses. We also need to take the time to step back and ask if what we’re seeing is really all that desirable to our own personal situation.
Married with a house and kids before 30 is lovely, and is #lifegoals for so many people. That’s fine, but it’s also fine if this isn’t what you want.
We tailor-make our lives – make them wisely. Live for yourself and the person you want to be, not for the character you think you should be.
When I tell people that I don’t want a relationship or children and state that I am happy on my own, they often struggle to get their head around it.
There is a stark difference between being lonely and choosing to be happily alone.
At the age of 21, I spent so much time worrying that I would never have a proper boyfriend.
When I was 22, I met my ex and abruptly stopped my life in its tracks. I was due to fly back out overseas and continue working abroad. I never went back.
I’m glad I experienced a relationship, but I also wish I could go back in time and tell my younger old self that being in one is not the be-all and end-all. I think that deep down, little 22 year old me would have been quite happy to carry on as she was, exploring the world solo, without the intervention of a man.
Fate makes a lot of our choices and we can’t control who we meet and indeed when, but I just regret that I was in so much of a rush.
It’s easy to lose yourself in a relationship, and this is often unintentional. Of course a relationship is all about being a team, but it’s also imperative that we remain on our own team, too.
I never realised how much I was simply ‘existing’ until recently, when I really started living again.
Because I don’t want children, I am able to ignore the so-called ‘biological clock’ often set by societies strict, unrealistic and pressurised expectations.
While a few of my friends are panicking about being single as we rapidly head towards the big 3-0, I feel calm about the whole saga. In fact, if I’m completely honest, I feel excited at the prospect of entering my thirties foot loose and fancy free!
There are so many places I want to go. The world is so full of experiences waiting to wind their way into our memories. There are people we are yet to meet and stories we are yet to hear, if only we take the time to listen.
Running is blissfully something I will have for life. My passion for running has already accounted for some of the best moments of my entire life and has taken me to some extraordinary places – I can’t wait to see where else this love of a lifetime will take me!
Every time I write, I feel so fulfilled. I have a lifelong therapy in the tantalising space between my notepad and the nib of my pen.
I don’t need anything else.
I have no idea where I’ll be in five years time. I don’t know what I’ll be doing, or who I’ll be doing it with… And that electrifies me. I have no real ties, commitments, or dependants, and that in itself is liberating.
I know that as long as I have my running, writing and travelling, I will live a rich life – a life that is true to me and my unique sense of happiness and accomplishment.
I am the artist of my life, and right now, my canvas is blank and my paintbrush is dripping with hundreds of different scenarios. Anything can happen, and I can’t wait to start painting! 😍🌈
Cara Jasmine Bradley ©