I think it is hard to find somewhere where you can feel at home when the place you are from and that place that is supposed to feel like home is where something bad happened to you for such a long time.
At least that’s how I feel about Cambridge, I really struggle to be there at times because it can cause my flashbacks to come back, nightmares to be quite bad and my anxiety can also be triggered there. So while I can go to Cambridge and have short visits I don’t think I could ever go back to living there permanently purely for my mental health.
Bournemouth felt like a transitional place for me. Whilst I was there so many things happened in such a short space of time that I never really got a chance to slow down and enjoy life at a normal pace.
For me home should be a place you are in love with – I know that is quite a weird thing to do but I think it is really important. You need to feel comfortable there and at ease. You should be able to relax and enjoy life.
Once I moved to Cardiff I really struggled to adjust with the difference in lifestyle compared to where I am from in Cambridge and Bournemouth, they both have a much slower pace where as Cardiff is a bit faster (not as fast as London – I definitely couldn’t cope with that!). So the change in pace of living took a bit of getting used to for me. Once I adjusted to that I just kind of fell in love with it here. Plus there are a lot of place where you can go which are out of the way and can be quite peaceful if you really need to get away from the hustle and bustle.
I have a great group of friends which for me is particularly important, plus I live with two really great people (I’ll talk about them in another post!), I also have a job which helps me to keep a routine going which is particularly important for my anxiety.
For me I don’t like being boxed in all day every day and I like getting out and about. So particularly now where I am living in Cardiff it enables me to do that. There is always something going on and I am close enough to everything that I can be involved in things as much as I want to, plus the days I want to be out of everything I have a place that I feel safe and where I can relax.
I really do feel as though Cardiff is my home and right now I don’t see myself living anywhere else. Obviously I miss my family being so far away from them but that just makes the time I go back and see them even more special!