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Finding peace and stillness- wrong place at wrong time?

Finding peace and stillness- wrong place at wrong time?

Old Oct 8th 2012, 11:23 am
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Default Finding peace and stillness- wrong place at wrong time?

I'm not sure if this is the right place to write- but here goes. I've spent the last few months deliberating and arguing with myself about what the 'right' thing to do is - and finally realised - 'right' is a moveable feast. It depends on the day, how much sleep i've had, who I meet during the day, what has happened to my husband at work, what has happened to our son at school - it constantly changes. The trouble is, time is passing by and it feels like we're stuck in a whirlpool. We like/love some of what New Zealand has, we like/love some of what the UK has – this isn’t about like/hate. This is our second time around here, so guess we are the 'ping pongers' I’ve seen mentioned. This time it has been different. This time it’s had a lot of positives. I'm not sorry we tried it again. What i'm sorry about is that we came over this time (for reasons that are too complicated to explain) and we feel its too late for us. We have spent so much money going backwards and forwards that we can't even think of buying a house here, its just too expensive. The money we have left when converted won’t buy us anything suitable. We are too old and too tired to start out again now with a long mortgage. It feels like we missed the boat on this one.
It would be unfair to only blame that though, I guess it also comes down to something I can hardly find words for, but I would guess that anyone who's felt it, knows it without words - its that 'feeling' of where you need to be. We are tired, wrung out, feel a bit battered and that’s without the fear and anxieties of the fact that we are going back with no jobs, nowhere to live and are having to battle via an Appeal to get our son into his old school. When I say it like that, it makes me sound like we are crazy, but I can’t shake off the feeling that I’m just in the wrong place at the wrong time. It may well have been the right place at a better time, but given we just have to make a decision to stay sane, we’ve finally made it today. Its been exhausting getting to this point, I’m so tired now I can’t sleep – hence why I’ve found my way to this site and am sitting here at this time of night writing to ‘myself’.
Yesterday, we decided we would change our plans and stay afterall, give it longer, make it work. We went for a drive so I could see if I would feel something, looking for a reaction, but nothing came – tiredness I assume. I finally went to sleep but woke early. My first thought was panic – panic that we had decided to stay, panic that I was here forever. Don’t get me wrong, I do like it here, but it’s not my home. I thought of what would lie ahead if we went back, the anguish, the stress and the potential nightmares. Then I thought that despite the fears of what may lie ahead when we get off the plane in the UK, the greater pain was seeing a plane leave here without me on it. I then knew what I wanted. I am a different person now from the person who arrived here. I was never materialistic, I do not want ‘things’ I do not crave wealth – just aswell really! I want to be still, be calm, and to not go anywhere far from ‘home’ for quite a long time. Guess that’s why I chose my login name –after Henry who said “I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived. I did not wish to live what was not life, living is so dear; nor did I wish to practise resignation, unless it was quite necessary”. Life here in NZ this time has brought many lessons, maybe this was our version of going to “the woods”, to let life slow down so we could breath, and to see that the life we had been living in the UK was not really a life. Living is dear, and I don’t want to just be resigned to live here with this feeling, so now its time to go. I hope the feeling of uncertainty and fear will go away though.
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Old Oct 8th 2012, 11:45 am
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Default Re: Finding peace and stillness- wrong place at wrong time?

All I can think of to say is....I wish you good luck and all the best for the future, whatever and wherever it may be!
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Old Oct 8th 2012, 4:43 pm
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Default Re: Finding peace and stillness- wrong place at wrong time?

I'm guessing housing isn't as cheap on the North Shore as it is in more rural parts of New Zealand. The housing ladder has less steps away from the city lights.
Best of luck settling, Sisyphus had an easier time from what I read.
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Old Oct 8th 2012, 7:03 pm
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Default Re: Finding peace and stillness- wrong place at wrong time?

I'm certainly no expert (so I could be totally off beam), but I did gain an impression after reading what you have written, so I thought I'd throw it out there anyway. I did wonder whether your feelings are more to do with your inner self, rather than which country you are living in and your environment. I wondered whether switching countries (whatever that country might be) is going to help or change your feelings. Have you thought about seeking a professional counsellor to talk your feelings over with? Dunno whether that would be something you would ever consider?
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Old Oct 8th 2012, 7:30 pm
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Default Re: Finding peace and stillness- wrong place at wrong time?

Originally Posted by waikatoguy View Post
I'm certainly no expert (so I could be totally off beam), but I did gain an impression after reading what you have written, so I thought I'd throw it out there anyway. I did wonder whether your feelings are more to do with your inner self, rather than which country you are living in and your environment. I wondered whether switching countries (whatever that country might be) is going to help or change your feelings. Have you thought about seeking a professional counsellor to talk your feelings over with? Dunno whether that would be something you would ever consider?
Actually I was going to suggest the same thing but felt a bit forward suggesting it but I do support the suggestion.....

Jan
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Old Oct 8th 2012, 7:42 pm
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Default Re: Finding peace and stillness- wrong place at wrong time?

Maybe you are looking in the wrong place. I have a similar problem, being restless and having tried many different ways to find peace. But I don't think it is possible to find real peace in a country, job or even family. I tried meditation and it kind of works for me.

Last edited by Assanah; Oct 8th 2012 at 7:47 pm.
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Old Oct 8th 2012, 7:47 pm
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Default Re: Finding peace and stillness- wrong place at wrong time?

how long have you been here?, what issues are you experiencing? does your family feel the same? are you missing family support? will you be able to afford and live back in the UK or will you just be swapping countries and still have the same problems?
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Old Oct 8th 2012, 8:10 pm
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Default Re: Finding peace and stillness- wrong place at wrong time?

Originally Posted by Walden View Post
I'm not sure if this is the right place to write- but here goes. I've spent the last few months deliberating and arguing with myself about what the 'right' thing to do is - and finally realised - 'right' is a moveable feast. It depends on the day, how much sleep i've had, who I meet during the day, what has happened to my husband at work, what has happened to our son at school - it constantly changes. The trouble is, time is passing by and it feels like we're stuck in a whirlpool. We like/love some of what New Zealand has, we like/love some of what the UK has – this isn’t about like/hate. This is our second time around here, so guess we are the 'ping pongers' I’ve seen mentioned. This time it has been different. This time it’s had a lot of positives. I'm not sorry we tried it again. What i'm sorry about is that we came over this time (for reasons that are too complicated to explain) and we feel its too late for us. We have spent so much money going backwards and forwards that we can't even think of buying a house here, its just too expensive. The money we have left when converted won’t buy us anything suitable. We are too old and too tired to start out again now with a long mortgage. It feels like we missed the boat on this one.
It would be unfair to only blame that though, I guess it also comes down to something I can hardly find words for, but I would guess that anyone who's felt it, knows it without words - its that 'feeling' of where you need to be. We are tired, wrung out, feel a bit battered and that’s without the fear and anxieties of the fact that we are going back with no jobs, nowhere to live and are having to battle via an Appeal to get our son into his old school. When I say it like that, it makes me sound like we are crazy, but I can’t shake off the feeling that I’m just in the wrong place at the wrong time. It may well have been the right place at a better time, but given we just have to make a decision to stay sane, we’ve finally made it today. Its been exhausting getting to this point, I’m so tired now I can’t sleep – hence why I’ve found my way to this site and am sitting here at this time of night writing to ‘myself’.
Yesterday, we decided we would change our plans and stay afterall, give it longer, make it work. We went for a drive so I could see if I would feel something, looking for a reaction, but nothing came – tiredness I assume. I finally went to sleep but woke early. My first thought was panic – panic that we had decided to stay, panic that I was here forever. Don’t get me wrong, I do like it here, but it’s not my home. I thought of what would lie ahead if we went back, the anguish, the stress and the potential nightmares. Then I thought that despite the fears of what may lie ahead when we get off the plane in the UK, the greater pain was seeing a plane leave here without me on it. I then knew what I wanted. I am a different person now from the person who arrived here. I was never materialistic, I do not want ‘things’ I do not crave wealth – just aswell really! I want to be still, be calm, and to not go anywhere far from ‘home’ for quite a long time. Guess that’s why I chose my login name –after Henry who said “I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived. I did not wish to live what was not life, living is so dear; nor did I wish to practise resignation, unless it was quite necessary”. Life here in NZ this time has brought many lessons, maybe this was our version of going to “the woods”, to let life slow down so we could breath, and to see that the life we had been living in the UK was not really a life. Living is dear, and I don’t want to just be resigned to live here with this feeling, so now its time to go. I hope the feeling of uncertainty and fear will go away though.


Another idea and one I am currently going through after 6 years here is not returning to your old life but go back to a new life in another part of the UK. Start afresh.
Goodluck with whatever you decide
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Old Oct 8th 2012, 8:15 pm
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Default Re: Finding peace and stillness- wrong place at wrong time?

Walden, what a well-expressed piece of writing, and how I feel for you. We are currently in the UK, but thinking of coming back your way - to Auckland's North Shore, this time. Last time we were over (as you can see, we are ping-pongers too!) we lived in Dunedin, in '06, following a year in Perth, WA. I immediately loved NZ, its magical beaches, its lush greenery, the enchanting lakes and the clouds and the (mostly!) blue skies. But I spent the whole year feeling bereft. I missed my friends, I felt uneasy within my own skin. I felt that I was in the wrong place at the wrong time. I desperately needed to come home. And so we did - myself and my husband and my two children, then aged 5 and 3. It was absolutely the right thing to do. And now we've rested and recuperated, we're in a completely different place as a family, and we are ready for another adventure. I am nervous, because I remember so well that feeling of dislocation that I experienced last time! But as others have said, that was much more connected to things that were going on in my own life (basically I was in the midst of a full-blown midlife crisis!) than to NZ itself. That's why I would like us, as a family, to give it another try, in the knowledge that we will always have a connection to both places, the UK and NZ, and that there will therefore always be something missing in our experience wherever we are. But then that connects, for me, to the fact that there is always 'something missing' in an existential sense generally in life for us humans! I very much know what you mean about the importance of stillness. It's why nature is so important to me. I wish I had specific advice for you, I really do! It does sound rather like you need to go back, for now, given how strongly you feel. That may change, but if it doesn't, I think you will need to follow your instincts, for now at least. Perhaps you'll come back (again) when the time is right! Anyway, whatever you decide, I send you a big hug and echo the 'good luck' sentiments already expressed!
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Old Oct 8th 2012, 8:23 pm
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Default Re: Finding peace and stillness- wrong place at wrong time?

Originally Posted by Walden View Post
I'm not sure if this is the right place to write- but here goes. I've spent the last few months deliberating and arguing with myself about what the 'right' thing to do is - and finally realised - 'right' is a moveable feast. It depends on the day, how much sleep i've had, who I meet during the day, what has happened to my husband at work, what has happened to our son at school - it constantly changes. The trouble is, time is passing by and it feels like we're stuck in a whirlpool. We like/love some of what New Zealand has, we like/love some of what the UK has – this isn’t about like/hate. This is our second time around here, so guess we are the 'ping pongers' I’ve seen mentioned. This time it has been different. This time it’s had a lot of positives. I'm not sorry we tried it again. What i'm sorry about is that we came over this time (for reasons that are too complicated to explain) and we feel its too late for us. We have spent so much money going backwards and forwards that we can't even think of buying a house here, its just too expensive. The money we have left when converted won’t buy us anything suitable. We are too old and too tired to start out again now with a long mortgage. It feels like we missed the boat on this one.
It would be unfair to only blame that though, I guess it also comes down to something I can hardly find words for, but I would guess that anyone who's felt it, knows it without words - its that 'feeling' of where you need to be. We are tired, wrung out, feel a bit battered and that’s without the fear and anxieties of the fact that we are going back with no jobs, nowhere to live and are having to battle via an Appeal to get our son into his old school. When I say it like that, it makes me sound like we are crazy, but I can’t shake off the feeling that I’m just in the wrong place at the wrong time. It may well have been the right place at a better time, but given we just have to make a decision to stay sane, we’ve finally made it today. Its been exhausting getting to this point, I’m so tired now I can’t sleep – hence why I’ve found my way to this site and am sitting here at this time of night writing to ‘myself’.
Yesterday, we decided we would change our plans and stay afterall, give it longer, make it work. We went for a drive so I could see if I would feel something, looking for a reaction, but nothing came – tiredness I assume. I finally went to sleep but woke early. My first thought was panic – panic that we had decided to stay, panic that I was here forever. Don’t get me wrong, I do like it here, but it’s not my home. I thought of what would lie ahead if we went back, the anguish, the stress and the potential nightmares. Then I thought that despite the fears of what may lie ahead when we get off the plane in the UK, the greater pain was seeing a plane leave here without me on it. I then knew what I wanted. I am a different person now from the person who arrived here. I was never materialistic, I do not want ‘things’ I do not crave wealth – just aswell really! I want to be still, be calm, and to not go anywhere far from ‘home’ for quite a long time. Guess that’s why I chose my login name –after Henry who said “I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived. I did not wish to live what was not life, living is so dear; nor did I wish to practise resignation, unless it was quite necessary”. Life here in NZ this time has brought many lessons, maybe this was our version of going to “the woods”, to let life slow down so we could breath, and to see that the life we had been living in the UK was not really a life. Living is dear, and I don’t want to just be resigned to live here with this feeling, so now its time to go. I hope the feeling of uncertainty and fear will go away though.
It sounds as if you've applied Occam's razor to your situation and arrived at the simplest conclusion i.e. you don't feel New Zealand is your home. Don't practice resignation and feel that you're in a situation you have to learn to like.

Because of the cost this will probably be the last time you'll have the freedom to make this decision, this time it's probably going to be for keeps.

It may not be too late for you to get back in to property ownership, it's more a case of finding somewhere in Britain that you can afford to buy and perhaps you'll need to investigate novel ways of doing that when you get home and back on your feet. There's shared equity, rent-to-buy, starting small and working your way up. Who knows what else is available these days, but just look at those mortgage interest rates, that's got to be a good start.

The thought of the struggle that's ahead of you finding jobs, getting your son into his old school etc. is daunting, of course it is, but you managed to do this before? if you've succeeded once you can do it again. Whatever you decide I wish you good luck and peace of mind.
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Old Oct 8th 2012, 8:41 pm
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Default Re: Finding peace and stillness- wrong place at wrong time?

Lots of good advice so far.

The only thing I would add is maybe a more rural location might suit? You mentioned in your title looking for peace and stillness, is that a physical longing?

We lived in Devonport for nearly 2years when we first arrived in NZ, I had a crappy job, but because of the work permit, it was hard to change. So life was a bit of a slog in some ways. My wife was homesick and after years sitting on the M62, moving half way across the planet to be stuck in another traffic jam was not my idea of having a good time.

After we got our residency, we moved to Marlborough and never looked back. When you see another car, usually the driver will wave at you. The pace of life here is much more gentle. We bought a 3 bed house for 250K, with a big garden for the kids. We have a lot more time for each other, which has made the whole experience of moving to NZ worth while for us.

Good luck.
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Old Oct 8th 2012, 9:57 pm
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Default Re: Finding peace and stillness- wrong place at wrong time?

Originally Posted by Walden
I want to be still, be calm, and to not go anywhere far from ‘home’ for quite a long time.

Guess that’s why I chose my login name –after Henry who said “I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived. I did not wish to live what was not life, living is so dear; nor did I wish to practise resignation, unless it was quite necessary”.

Life here in NZ this time has brought many lessons, maybe this was our version of going to “the woods”, to let life slow down so we could breath, and to see that the life we had been living in the UK was not really a life.

Living is dear, and I don’t want to just be resigned to live here with this feeling, so now its time to go.

I hope the feeling of uncertainty and fear will go away though.
Poignant first post Walden .

When a person looks for stillness and peace, it seems to me that it is usually at a time during or after great struggle & turmoil. Doesn't matter whether it is inside of yourself or from events around you.
This can take a huge toll on the ability to think clearly as it takes all your energy and leaves you exhausted .

Who, besides your partner, knows about how you are feeling?
I'm with Jan and Waikatoman really . I feel that you should speak about your inner self ,as it is at present, with a doctor or a counsellor if you haven't done so already.

If you are to make this move, do so with your sights set to the horizon . Not from a place of virtual despair.


Please do feel totally free to write here. Someone is always about to lend an ear.
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