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THE TRUTH ABOUT MOVING TO IRELAND - what needed to be said.

It has been one year since my husband, two dogs and I made the big move from the US to Ireland. Moving your furniture, belongings, and two dogs is an experience not for the faint of heart! But we did it. We were hungry for a new adventure as we approached retirement age.

We have spent the last year living in beautiful Kenmare, County Kerry. We bought a house with breathtaking views of Kenmare Bay and the Caha Mountains - one of the best views in Ireland.

But six months into our new life I began to feel the rumblings of discontent - that something was not quite right.

I've had this feeling many times in my life - when you know something is off and not good for you.

In the past, I always knew when a relationship wasn't working out, wasn't good for me, that it was time to leave. Or when I've been stuck on a career path that is deadening, uninspiring, and all wrong for me despite all the hard work, security, and investment.

There's always been a quiet and kind voice within trying to tell me: Not this. Not this.

I've heard that voice many times, but I haven't always taken its advice. My younger self would run away too scared to turn up the volume.

I believed that listening to that voice would only cause upheaval and chaos for myself and especially for others. But now that I'm older I have learned to trust that voice despite the uncomfortable consequences. For me now, there's no question of not listening in.

That voice of discontent - that something's not quite right - spoke to me six months ago. The voice told me that I was living in the wrong place.

For several months I had been feeling lethargic, unsettled, uninspired to do my work, and mildly depressed. There were mornings when I didn't want to get out of bed when the thought of another rainy day with limited things to do and places to go - endless cups of tea and scones - scared the crap out of me.

I knew I needed to live in a place that offered more options - to be near a city where I could do my work, shop, take a class, or visit a museum, especially on those days when it wouldn't stop raining. I didn't want to live so far out of town and have to drive 15 minutes to buy a cup of coffee.

I realized that I can't live on scenery - gorgeous views do not make a life.

Having the guts to listen to that quiet voice - to tell the truth to yourself and others is not easy. Gloria Steinem was onto something when she wrote:

"The truth will set you free, but first it will piss you off - it will also scare the crap out of you."

I would have to tell my husband how I was feeling. How was I going to share with him that all of this effort we had endured wasn't working out for me? That the beautiful views weren't enough for me? That we needed to move again. What now? This is what scared the crap out of me.

There were months when I tried to make peace and work around it. Make amends. Tweak it. But that quiet voice kept pestering me and insisted on being heard at full volume.

And that pissed me off big time because it meant that we'd have to start all over again. Owning up to the truth is all well and good, but without courage, we end up aware of our truth but continue to put up with our unwanted lives. We tread the shallow waters of life always afraid to live in the deep end of what's really going on, the things we dread - of what's really true.

Today exactly one year later, our home in Kenmare is sold - "done and dusted" as they say here in Ireland. We move into our new home in two days.

We found "our place": on the beautiful shores of Strangford Lough, County Down in Northern Ireland. We will live in Strangford Village - walk to the village - considered one of the prettiest villages in the UK, one hour drive to Belfast City - this will be our new playground.

And wouldn't you know it! I was born in Belfast. It's a city I've always loved, and Strangford Village was always my favorite place when I needed to get out of the city.

And so, I've come full circle. I've come home to this place and I've come home to myself. It feels so right. And all because I dared to have that uncomfortable conversation with my husband. I had to tell the truth. Turns out he secretly agreed with me.

Letting go of what no longer works for us has a powerful and wonderful magic because when something terrible or uncomfortable is happening to us, something wonderful has the potential to be born. When we truly let go of the way we once thought things should be, that’s when the magic happens.

There's nothing more awful and scary than diving into that deep end of life,... but I've discovered over the years that there's nothing, nothing, nothing as sweet as what it can yield.

If you are stuck in the trenches of a life that feels all wrong for you -- then know that your suffering and yearning could be the very ticket that will catapult you into a life you could only dream about. It could be the very thing that transmutes your life of lead into gold.

Hang out in your truth - it will set you free for the life you are meant to live.

“We shall not cease from exploration

And the end of all our exploring

Will be to arrive where we started

And know the place for the first time.

T.S. Eliot.



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