“It is not in the stars to hold our destiny, but ourselves” – William Shakespeare
The beginning of a new year is the ultimate time for reflection and mindfulness. Where we are, where we have been, where we’re going. The past year has been the first good year for Matt and I in a long time. The end of 2012 and beginning of 2013 marked itself as the most devastating time of our lives. A high risk twin pregnancy with the knowledge that one of our babies had no chance of life, the uncertainty that we may lose both, the endless emergency visits to the labour ward, the death of our sons and the debilitating grief that followed. So much trauma, so much heartache. Our joy had swiftly turned to sorrow and we felt so lost when our new found parenthood was torn away. Our home transformed from a place of comfort and sanctuary into a place we felt trapped. Loss and loneliness, encapsulated within the walls that surrounded us. But 2014 was good to us. It was not without its own challenges, but our grief has settled, it has become part of our new normal. Henry has flourished. And whilst life has been better, our lives are still not where we want them to be.
The death of William and Noah changed everything. The path our lives would follow, our perspectives, our relationships. Something as monumental as your children dying strips away all facades and leaves behind raw truth. We suddenly saw life and people as they really were. It made us question what we truly wanted from our life and how we wanted to live.
Losing William and Noah taught us that we are never guaranteed time. Life is precious, short. They did not get the luxury of a life, and so we want to live ours for them as well as for ourselves. We saw with clarity the changes we wanted to make within our lives, the direction we wanted to move in. We want, and need, a new start. A new beginning. And so, in March, we will be moving to the USA. Sweet serendipity presented itself through a work opportunity in Matt’s company, which has a large presence in the US, allowing us to fulfil one of our dreams of living in another country.
A new life.
A better life, we hope, for Henry and ourselves.
We have always wanted to experience life somewhere other than here. Too many people don’t have the chance to leave their country, instead they are bound by poverty or politics, imprisoned in a world where they aren’t happy. We are so fortunate that the world is open for us, free to explore and inhabit. We want to experience as much of it as possible. It is an incredible opportunity to meet new people, experience new things, see new places. We are so thankful and so very excited to start this new chapter in our lives.
Virginia will become the place we call home, with its glorious Blue Ridge mountains, rich culture and historic homes. There is so much we want to see, so much we want to do. Not only in the neighbourhood we will be living in, but throughout the East Coast. Florida will only be a few hours away by plane – the magical world of Disney, Harry Potter and Busch Gardens awaits. New York – a 40 minute journey by plane. And of course, the White House in Washington.
We will be documenting our journey here on my blog – it is our hope that capturing such a life changing move will be something poignant to look back on in years to come. When my parents left South Africa and moved our family to England when I was almost 3 years old, it is something which I would have loved to look back on. I’m looking forward to documenting the realities of moving across the world and setting up a home in a new and foreign place. The challenges, the joys, the new places and people. But until then, we’re busy planning and prepping for the big move, excitedly anticipating what the future holds for us.