Okay, maybe it is typical, regarding the way it is written. It might seem as only a bunch of things that happened to me. But the past year was a lifechanger for me and it was far from ordinary.
I moved seven or eight times. It was exhausting and I was literally living “in my luggage” on some days. Sometimes it felt as if I will crash and just give up on it all, but I luckily didn’t, because…
I managed to live in three countries within a year. Never EVER in my life I thought I will get to such point, especially not when I am only 23 years old!
Those three countries are Croatia, Poland and Ireland, where I currently live. That means living, working and socializing using three different languages and currencies and getting comfortable within three unique cultures. Also, I have lived in three cities in Croatia, and I had jobs in two of them. Pretty cool, isn’t it?
During only a five-month time, I have met people from 19 countries. I became richer than ever meeting people from Poland, Russia, Slovakia, Belgium, Germany, Italy, Spain, Slovenia, Portugal, France, UK, Ireland, Greece, USA, Canada, Ukraine, Turkey, Romania and Belarus. Some of them turned into a huge part of my life and I can’t even imagine not having them as my friends anymore.
During the same period, I started learning a new language – Polish. I haven’t felt the excitement of starting a new language for at least 8 years now, and the feeling is priceless. A whole new world opens up in the blink of an eye.
I ran two big races in Poland: the Łódź Marathon and Wings For Life humanitarian race. The marathon was my sixth so far, and the first one that I ran without the usual running support from my boyfriend, friends and my team. But I had my friends there, the ones from all around the world, and I owe them forever for giving me such a huge and emotional experience that day. Wings For Life had a different weight on me, I dedicated it to a friend, very successful in gymnastics, who passed away far too early three years ago. I had two amazing Russians there with me to support me.
I moved to Ireland’s capital city and in only a week’s time managed to get a job. Even though it is just a six-week temporary job, this was a huge success for me and a tremendous boost for my own confidence. Luckily, the job is great and the team that I am working with is amazing. I have no idea what is going to happen afterward, but I don’t have any fears about it, and that’s what has changed inside of me. It is unmeasurable and probably unexplainable, but this is how I realize how far I have come during 2014.
Not everything was this easy and lucky. While running Wings For Life, I got myself injured, and as much as I wanted it to be a minor injury as it usually is, it has cost me a total of six months without running. I have been into sports for some fifteen years now, and none of my injuries was this persistent. This one in particular has taken away my biggest reward from running: a peace of mind and a limitless freedom. This was by far my biggest struggle throughout the year and I know the reward is still out there waiting for me.
But at the end of all of it, I still have the happiest moment of the year to tell you: I started living with my significant other. Only two years ago this scenario seemed completely impossible, but here I am, and I wouldn’t change it for the world. He is my best friend and my soul mate, the biggest reason why (and how) I survived such a hectic year.
And almost a year ago, I had a feeling that the year might be this crazy – and that is the reason why this blog was born. Even though I neglected it during some periods and I didn’t write as much as I wanted to, there is a whole new year in front of me to make it work just as I want it to.
None of this would ever be possible without the tremendous support from my parents and my brother. Twice in a year I left home and moved hundreds of kilometers away, and all they ever cared for is if it makes me happy. There is no “thank you” big enough for that.
And the strongest lesson I am taking from the past year? Never ever give up on something that makes you get out of your bed in the morning. Regardless how scary, painful, hard, challenging or time-consuming it might be. If it’s what fulfills you, that is what you are made for, and the reward is always going to find its way to you.
That is what I’ve learned from my own experience, and even though it was horrifying at moments, I could not be happier right now. So, why not give it a try?