When Brian was offered the opportunity to work in Mount Isa, neither of us were sure whether that was a town we wanted to spend even a short time living in. However, we had been asking the universe for a means to allow us the financial freedom to travel around Australia and this seemed like a possibility. We had no idea what was in store.
Plus, after coming back from overseas with a new zest for adventure and Brian losing his job almost immediately, we tried to see the positives. We had also often talked about working and travelling around Australia – the idea being that Brian would work in a place for a month or two and then we would keep travelling until we needed more money – instead of trying to fund it all beforehand. Mount Isa felt like a test of that lifestyle option.
But it also felt like something else – an opportunity to expand. An opportunity to face my fears and anxiety. An opportunity to jump and allow the proverbial net to appear. I had to trust that taking this big step was the gateway to something more, something that met our needs of adventure and quality family time.
The road-trip towards Mount Isa included a stop over at the Gemfields to enjoy some fossicking and there was lots of animal spotting along the way. We seemed to be one of hundreds of caravans making their way north towards the warmer weather and our stops were really fun and full of adventure. We were glad to be on the road again together.
As soon as we moved to Mount Isa, Brian began receiving more and more job offers – new ones almost every day. We started to see that going to Mount Isa was just part of our journey and not a destination. A stepping stone if you will. We’re not even really sure we’re ready for a destination right now – our travelling journey feels like it’s only in it’s formative stages.
Going overseas lit that spark inside of us as a family. Our amazing camping trips did too, but this was on such a bigger scale. We were really on our own out there in the big, wide world and we had only each other to rely on. That trip was something we had talked about for so long, and making it into our reality was so fulfilling. And our instincts about travelling as a family were right, we enJOYed it so much! We were better for it. And the fact that our children asked to come back and spend time in Joy, our camper, reassured us that travel in all its forms, was right for us right now.
We’ve always been about making choices that feel good for us – that bring us JOY as a family – every single choice is made in that way. So even though the move to Mount Isa initially seemed to be an answer to our desires, before we left Brian and I resolved to reassess constantly whether this was a good choice for our whole family and to stay open to new situations or offers. We decided to live in Joy to begin with to allow us the freedom to move on if needed. And as it turns out, this was a good decision because once we arrived in town, we realised the job had not been what it seemed.
For a time we felt upset and frustrated, wondering if we’d made a mistake coming to this isolated outback city. We started losing sight of what really mattered. Eventually, we stopped ourselves, and found time to sit down and re-evaluate our priorities. What did we REALLY want? What felt like JOY right now? What were we willing to do and not do, to achieve our JOY-filled lifestyle?
With these questions answered and our focus solidified, we began actively calling in an opportunity for our travel to be easily financed, and where we could also have money to access our other goal which has recently been starting to surface in our hearts (more on that another time). The location wasn’t too much of an issue, but I did want to be closer to Brisbane if possible (though I doubted that could be a possibility) and in a town that was bigger with more services and more learning opportunities and connections for our children.
I was also aching for a home base. We hadn’t lived in our own home since we sold our house back in March. And 6 months of basically living out of suitcases was beginning to take its toll. We had downsized many of our possessions when we sold – we now literally only have enough ‘things’ to fill a regular trailer! But I wasn’t aching for more stuff. I was seeking a place where I could put the things that were important to me and to see them on display every day and not in a box. I wanted to put the kids art on the walls and for them to have an art and craft space readily accessible again. I wanted shelves for them to put their books and projects and store their collections of crystals and nature finds and photos and vases of flowers.
The universe listened and worked faster than we could have imagined. We received a job offer last Wednesday (13/08) and moved out of Mount Isa that afternoon. We drove back for two days to our initial starting point – Rockhampton. The drive once again proved both exciting as we spotted wild camels and saw hundreds of kangaroos; and exhausting. We were just glad to arrive safely.
Although, as is always the case, there are some lessons in store for us even here. And here is a new town, a city in fact, where we have Brian’s family to call on, where the children can make stronger connections with them and spend time with Brian’s [almost] 95 year old Nanna which always makes my heart swell.
Brian now has a roster that gives us flexibility with him working 7 days on and having 7 days off. We’ve found a lovely little Queenslander house to rent, and have started making it home. We’ll base ourselves here for the months to come, while taking time during Brian’s off week to see more of our big, beautiful and always interesting home state. There may even be another trip overseas in the works before the year is out!
Of-course it will be difficult having Brian away for a week at a time. Being apart is never easy. The benefits though, outweigh that sacrifice and sometimes, you have to do that thing that feels scary in order to grow. I had always been adamant I wouldn’t agree to a roster like that. I had always said No to Brian when he suggested moving to Rocky. But somehow, when the opportunity actually appears in front of you, sometimes the things you didn’t think you wanted to do because fear clouded your vision, don’t seem so scary anymore. Sometimes, you can see the bigger picture, and that makes all the difference.