Everything was fine. Everything had been fine for some time – I had been so much calmer than I thought I had the capacity to be in those circumstances. Sometimes I thought that maybe I was in shock, and that was why I was so ok.
Then panic hit. Like a thief in the night, I was caught by it without any chance to prepare, barely minutes before leaving for the airport. The walls were suddenly closing in. In a moment of crazed self-denial, I tried to reason with my racing heart: “I don’t need to do this. No one will blame if I don’t.” In my head, these irrational mental pictures of me crawling under my bed and hiding from the world for the rest of my life seemed perfectly sensible. Then my eyes filled up.
I had to do this. I had always known that I would have to do this.
My 4-year-old nephew was playing in front of me with his little cars, oblivious to my emotional turmoil, and all I could think about was: what kind of person would I become if I backed out in one of the most important moments of my life?
So I sat back and ordered my mind to focus on the ultimate objective. On the thing I had never dreamed about.
Last year, on a night for reflections about life choices, I asked my sister if she knew that I would leave Brazil before I made the decision. In other words, I wanted to know if my choice had been predictable. She said, of course she did. When I asked for clarification, she continued: “There was always something in you that said that you wouldn’t stay in one place forever.”
I talked about this before in this blog, when I completed one year of being in Belgium, about how I always felt I would live elsewhere. That night when I was talking to my sister, I was thinking about the inevitability of my destiny. I had been bound to move since childhood. And I knew it.
So I dreamed about it. I took my time – years and years – choosing the place. First it was London because Harry Potter is there. Then it was Dublin because it’s the fairies’ home. For a short time it was Australia because – kangaroos! I also considered Los Angeles; imagine going out for a coffee and accidentally stumbling upon Zac Efron’s strong arms and discovering we were made for each other? Destiny, of course.
For a long time, it was New York because – gosh, it’s where dreams come true, however crazy they are. Haven’t we seen enough movies to know that for sure by now? I dreamed about struggling to pay bills in an excuse of an apartment, going to wild parties and living the most movie-like situations.
I dreamed about spending some time on an island to get inspiration to write life-changing books. I dreamed about climbing a mountain just to prove that I could get to the top. I dreamed about having the jet setter life – traveling everywhere, dating gorgeous men, being fearlessly independent.
I dreamed about the adventures I would live, the people I would meet. I still do. Dreaming is second nature to me, a feature that some people think is naïve, others childish, but that I consider as one of my most important assets.
For all my dreaming, though, something that never crossed my imaginative mind, never once in my 26 years of life, was living in Asia. Visit, sure, spend some time, why not. But live – nope, not in the scope of my bubble. Not that I had anything against it. I just never thought about it – the same way most people never think about living in, I don’t know, Tahiti.
Yet, now I live in Singapore.
The possibility of living here didn’t even exist a few months ago. Then I had the opportunity and took it with both hands without really thinking too much about it. Because for the first time in my life I felt I was doing something I had been meant to do since birth.
I may have never dreamed about this, and I may not have any idea of what will happen now. But this is one of the greatest moments of my life. No matter what happens, I’ll always remember it later, when I think about dreams.
This blogger has just changed headquarters, dear readers.
This new phase?
It’s going to be a wild ride. And we’ll love it all the way.