I'm Packing My Bags

Because I’m moving across the pond!

To Scotland, actually. My favorite place on Earth, my soul home, my siren song. I’ve talked and talked and talked about moving to Scotland for literal years, and I’m finally going. I’m hard at work lining up all my ducks for my January 2020 move. I don’t have a hard date just yet since I’m still comparing flights for myself and for the dogs.

My first Scottish selfie - but definitely not my last.

My first Scottish selfie - but definitely not my last.

Naturally, I would never move without Gatsby and Artemis. So I’m doing a lot of research on which airlines are best for large animals to fly on so I can make the right choice for them.

There’s still a lot to line out for my move - visas, passports for the dogs, flights, an apartment, etc. - and it’s an overwhelming process. I’ve actually been researching how to move to Scotland with a dog for a few years now, and finding truly helpful and clear information is hard. That’s why I want to share my own experience here to help anyone else that might be looking to move internationally. I’m going to share what I’m learning and how I’m working things out financially and legally.

Moving to Scotland is one of the two main things I’ve wanted to do in my adult life (the other being publish a book, and I’m so close to having my first book done!). I know it seems really random to most people, but for me it’s the most natural thing. I fell in love with Scotland during a Pinterest search in 2014. The country and the culture bewitched me and hasn’t let go since.

My visit last November only solidified my desire to move there, and that’s actually the main reason my parents and I went on that trip. I wanted to go there in person to see if it was everything I felt it would be, and I wanted my parents to see it too. I wanted them to understand why I feel called to move away.

While they still aren’t thrilled at the idea of being thousands of miles apart from me, they do understand why I love it, and they do support my decision. That was step one in the moving process :).

I’ve got just around 3 months to finalize everything now. To say I’m feeling a little bit of pressure would be an understatement! I’m mostly excited though.

Excited. Nervous. A little bit scared in the best way. But mostly just over the moon happy that I’m going to go do something that means so much to me. I’ve realized in the last two years how important it is to live your life for yourself and not for anyone else.

To be honest, I spent most of my twenties feeling out of step with my life and myself because I was following the prescribed “plan,” but felt so entirely unfulfilled. I graduated college, got the stable 8-5 office job, and then wondered why I felt so empty. I thought that would lead to the happy life society tells us we’ll have, but I wasn’t happy.

Everyone I knew was following that same formula, and getting engaged and married and having kids, and while all of that is beautiful if it’s what you want, I personally don’t want that.

One day, maybe.

But right now, all my heart wants is to lead a creative life, see the world, make each day an event and write the stories I have in my head. The regular work life and hustle hustle hustle makes me want to crawl back in bed and never come out. When I finally acknowledged the fact that traditional life wasn’t going to make me happy, I felt like I was in control for the first time as an adult.

Living in Scotland is the biggest decision I’ve made since leaving my office job. I’m so excited. I’m so ready - emotionally. And I can’t wait to share more about the process and the experience.

I have a plan in place for the moving preparations and then what I’m going to do after the move. I’m going to share an entire blog post around the prepping soon because there’s a lot that goes into it. It needs its own post.

As for once I get there, the main focus is going to be traveling and writing and sharing. There are several places I want to see in Scotland. By “several” I mean every single square inch of it. There are mountains the dogs and I are going to hike, castles to photograph, beaches to visit, and cities to explore. Again, I want to see and do it all.

I’m also going to be heading around Europe some too. The list of countries is long, but it’s going to be so incredibly fun to share it all. The list of countries to visit will probably get longer. France will be one of my first excursions outside of Scotland. It’s about time I put those 6 years of French classes to the actual test!

All of that to say: I’m packing my bags, I’m heading out on an adventure, and as J.R.R. Tolkein famously said, Not all those who wander are lost.