lucky to have worked with the best of the best
I read a book recently in which there was a beautiful paragraph about people not liking messy. Society asks for the happy endings, the feel goods, the affirming and uplifting reports. “Come back when you have something positive to say” But my life has been nothing but messy. Most of it related to a childhood I could not control. I am still working it all out. Personally I have found comfort in other people’s messiness so to speak, those are the stories I have always been interested in.
once I found the mountains I was hooked
My drive and the idea which has been preached around the world on social media that if you want something bad enough all you need to do is work for it, took a physical and mental toll on me. When it did not work out, I felt like a failure. But during the last few years whilst trying to get back on track I have had a lot of time to reflect and work out what ultimately is most important to me. And it comes down to my freedom. The freedom to be myself, in my work, my friendships and my relationships. I left veterinary practice because I did not feel I could feel do that. I felt that I was continuously pulled in different directions and I was never good enough. For a long time I felt stuck, not knowing what direction to head in. When you look at my profile you could say I have done it all, I worked at some of the best equine hospitals in the world, I became a lecturer at one of the best veterinary universities in the world and I raced at elite level with the best athletes of the world in multiple disciplines (al be it at the back of the pack) And I have not regretted anything I have done, but I would not recommend doing all of this unless you have an incredible support network!
Racing at the world championships in the Dutch national kit was quite something
Last year I made a choice, it came with the dream of challenging my physical and mental limits traversing the Himalayas in Nepal from West to East on the mountain bike. When I researched it, I discovered it had never been attempted let alone done before. I planned everything from choosing a route studying a million maps endlessly, to all the logistics needed for something this big. I paid for the expedition and everything that came with it out of my savings. The project was completely mine, It was my idea, it was my dream and although nothing went according to plan, it was the most rewarding thing I have ever done in my life because I was in control of what was controllable from beginning to end and I tried to execute that to the best of my ability. The icing on the cake was achieving a world first.
As vets we are born high achievers, heck just getting into University means you have to stand out, we are also generally people who want to fix things, save animals, help out where we can, which often results in working around the clock. The expedition in Nepal taught me that I am the one in control of my life, that it is up to me to dictate my own boundaries. Unfortunately I had to leave equine practice to realise that but I am keen to find a balance. Search for a (part time) job where I can dictate my own freedom with people who respect that so I can chase my so many numerous goals on my ever growing bucket list!
“Freedom in any case, is only possible by constantly struggling for it” Einstein