After two years of making Canada (specifically Toronto) my home, it’s time to leave. In September, it’s goodbye Canada and hello, my original homeland, the UK!
It’s with a heavy heart that I leave, for various reasons. I have loved living here: I’ve made some amazing friends, had an incredible job at a company I really like, explored and fallen in love with Canada as a country and have had the best time moving in and living happily with my boyfriend. Hell, Toronto itself has even massively grown on me! (For anyone who doesn’t know, it wasn’t my first choice city and it took a while for me to get to grips with Toronto.)
All of these things that have become my norm over the past two years are coming to an end. Most sadly, the fact that until my boyfriend finds a job in the UK (he’s a US citizen, making job hunting in the UK that much harder) or I’m eligible to sponsor him to come and live in the UK (which requires me to be settled and earning money in the UK – holler if you know of any job openings in content!), we’ll be going back to long distance. I can’t really express how much this will suck.
So why am I moving at all then? Well, there are a few reasons: I miss my family and friends in the UK a lot; my Working Holiday Visa has run out (don’t worry, I’m still here legally!); and despite enjoying Toronto now, it’s not the city I want to spend too much more time in. Ideally, I would have loved to stay until the end of the year – but we can’t control these kinds of things, and what with my visa ending and it not really being fair to ask my employer, “hey, spend all the money, time and resources on sponsoring me to stay, but I’ll probably leave soon anyway!”, it’s time to move on to the next chapter!
It might sound like I’m super upset about leaving, and of course I’m sad – as I start to disassemble my life here, a life I’ve made my own, grown used to and thoroughly loved (most of the time), that’s bound to be the overriding feeling at the moment.
But am I excited to move back to the UK? Yes and no. I’m not exactly thrilled on a political level (I voted Remain in the EU Referendum and I’m no fan of the Conservative Party to say the least) and to initially move back in with my parents while I find a job and a place to live isn’t ideal. Considering the choices I’ve made throughout my life (changing schools just because, studying abroad in Australia, moving to Canada, etc), it’s clear I like change and fresh/new starts, but if I’m not proactive, this one is more likely to backfire and feel like the ‘sameness’ I was happy to leave when my path bound for Canada over two years ago now.
On the other hand, I’m very excited. I can’t wait to give my family huge hugs, to spend time getting to know my nephew (who was born while I’ve been living in Canada and I’ve only met twice), see my home friends regularly again, reacquaint myself with London and its little quirks I’ve missed and have easy access to Europe. And once my boyfriend joins me across the pond, I will be ecstatic.
In the end, it’s all about attitude towards these kind of live events, so roll on life in the UK!
If anyone has any tips of what the first things I should do when returning to the UK, please let me know! I feel so out of the loop of British life!