13 August 2023

Clamber we will, if clamber, we must.

On this day (I honestly cannot remember the exact date, and I do not wish to rummage through documents to find the exact date, because this date is close enough) in 2013, the bodybuddy/lifemate and I touched down in Daegu, South Korea, from Denver, Colorado, USA, because the bodybuddy/lifemate snagged a job as an English teacher. We were shooting for Seoul, but after landing in Daegu, we ended up being very grateful that we were able to spend our first year in a smaller city. By September 2014, the bodybuddy/lifemate snagged a spot in a Seoul academy, etc. At the time we first landed in Daegu, we experienced some serious growing pains, but the pain was different. How do I put it?

Imagine standing at the base of a large staircase, a set of stairs wherein the next step is many meters above your head. You jump to try to reach the next step, and as you're jumping up, someone grabs you by the back of your shirt and sorta pulls you up onto the next step. This is what it was like to move to Korea to teach English. 

Yes, you still have to jump, but the process of relocating to Korea is largely supported by the institution that hired you to teach. They setup your visa; they setup your flight; they setup your airport pickup; they setup your housing; they setup your training, etc., etc., etc. You are thrust into your life very rapidly, and the stress of it all is too much for some would-be teachers to bear. Nevertheless, you're there, and it's all happening to you. As long as you can hang on for the ride, the stress and burden of reaching that next step levels out. 

In 2023, our move to Oahu has been a completely different sorta jump.

Imagine a cat. It looks up at a thing onto which it wants to jump. It peddles its back feet a bit. Stares up at the height it imagines it can jump to reach the height of the thing upon which it wishes to be. Its butt wriggles back and forth until it finally decides that it will jump. It jumps. Its front feet reach the height, but only about its chest makes it over the ledge, and then it has to reach one of its back feet up to the edge of the ledge and clamber its way onto the thing it tried so effortfully to summit. Maybe thirty whole seconds go by as it scrambles to get itself comfortably atop the thing. 

This is what our move to Oahu has felt like. We knew how high we were attempting to jump. We made all of the necessary measurements. We took in as much information as we could. But at the end of the day, we did not know anyone here. We have had zero help aside from the internet to get here. And at some point, we had to jump. We jumped as hard and as high as we could; we also had to drag along our unfueled rocket. We were strong enough to reach the ledge, and then we had to clamber our way over the ledge's edge and essentially roll our bodies onto the top of the next step. 

It was rough, unglamorous, a bit clumsy, and I've had more meltdowns in the past three months than I've had in my entire life before then.  

But we fucking did it. 

We fucking moved our life to Oahu. 

And along the way, I lost sight of our goal. 

I lost sight of myself. 

I lost sight of what our move has all truly been about. 

The point of our move was not to make some grand statement about how "we've made it," or whatever the fuck. Instead, when we were easing out of the pandemic, we looked at each other, and thought out loud about how, if this is our life (the life we were living in Colorado, working day jobs as our businesses grow), where would we, ideally, live, while doing the exact same thing (working day jobs as our businesses grow)?

Joking, we both said, Hawai'i (we had skid stopped through over the course of a 72-hour layover between Auckland, NZ, and Seattle, WA back in 2018). Neither of us knew that the other had, essentially, fallen in love with the place over those 72 hours. 

But then we looked into it, and the goal was never to prove anything. The goal was to simply relocate. If we are going to job day jobs, we'll just job day jobs in Hawai'i. And back in late 2022, we started seriously planning our relocation.

By April 2023, our plans would be put to the test, and our plan worked.

What failed was my own internal struggle with my own dissatisfaction by not "being someone" by now. I had crossed some wires at some point between April and June, wherein I was thinking of this relocation as some proof of my success, my having "made it," until one day, the bodybuddy/lifemate gently reminded me that that was never the point of our move. The point was simple. Move our current life to Hawai'i. That's it. 

We still have the mundane task of day jobbing to do, and the daunting task of fueling our rocket, but we got good day jobs (we stayed with the same company), and our rocket made it in tact. We fucking moved to Hawai'i. And we're simply living our everyday life here. We haven't "made it," yet. We have nothing to prove. We simply wanted to live the simple life we were living in Colorado in a place that we thought we'd love enough to finally settle down in and call home. 


According to the bodybuddy/lifemate, I have BIG DREAMS. For one, I am an orphan who believes she can be a billionaire. Two, I am not a nepo baby, which means I have no fancy connections, who dares to be a widely-read writer. Third, I'm under the impression that (as a normal person) I can attain both of the aforementioned before turning thirty (I'm thirty-seven). 

I laughed out loud when the bodybuddy/lifemate put my dreams/aspirations in these terms for me to understand myself. 

The point, he says, is that I am living my life in pursuit of these goals, and the goals that I've set for myself will take a lifetime to attain, reach, behold. They are, according to him, BIG GOALS, BIG DREAMS. In short, I want a BIG LIFE. But I've really come from very little. I am a 99 Percenter trying to escape into the one percent of the One Percent. 

And then I felt stupid and selfish. 

But then I felt happy.

I felt really proud of what we've accomplished. The point was never to be done jobbing, because we've "made it." The point was always to continue living our simple lives, here, in Hawai'i. Showing up to our lame-ass jobs to collect our lame-ass paychecks as we continue to build our businesses and fuel our rocket. Then, when our rocket is finally fueled, Hawai'i is our location of residence, the place to where we will come home after our months-long business trips take us around the world and in and out of D.C. 

When we think of our life as a pair who has attained their lifetime goals, we will need the stability of a home base, a place where all our stuff is stashed while our business takes us wherever our clients need us. As a vacation hot spot, having Hawai'i as our home means that when we are home, we are not working, which essentially means we'll be on vacation when we're home. 

In the present moment, however, we are not on vacation. We drag our asses to our day jobs, and we live our mundane lives in this tropical paradise. This is not a bad situation. This is not a situation about which I should be complaining. And so, my deepest hope is that I have not been misunderstood as a complainer for having successfully relocated my life to one of the most expensive places on the planet.

When understood, my lamentations revolve around my own personal dissatisfaction with reaching my personal goals and dreams. But like the bodybuddy/lifemate reminds me on the daily (something it seems he's decided to take upon himself), my dreams are enormous. They're of the biggest variety. And dreams and goals like mine will take a lifetime to attain. 

This perspective shift (along with a dynamite video by @kiesha_evolving) has helped me understand both how spoiled I am (having gifts and talent at all) and how far I've come (putting my gifts and talents to good use).

My soul has found a new peace. 

I have nothing to prove to anyone.

Every day, I am inching closer and closer to my goals and dreams.

Like the bodybuddy/lifemate continually reminds, I have BIG GOALS, the type of dreams that require a lifetime of striving. To be able to work toward my goals, at all, is a life worth loving.