Race 13 - Day 6
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Crew Diary - Derry-Londonderry to Liverpool
“If you could do anything in the world, what would you do?”
After several 'umms' and 'aaghs', and a few internal thoughts that went along the lines of “I'm going to sound like a right plonker when I say this” I finally answered this question with “one day I'd like to sail around the world.”
At the age of 35, I was on the board of directors at work, I lived in a lovely house, I drove my dream car, and I was genuinely very happy with my lot. But in the space of 6 weeks I was told my Dad had prostate cancer and I had split up from my other half of ten years. I genuinely felt like I could have fallen apart.
It was the fear of losing those that loved me that made me re-think life as I knew it. I wanted to make sure that when I looked back at 90 years old, I would know I'd made the most of my time. I would know that I'd given it everything, pushed myself to keep learning, be proud of what I'd achieved and who I'd become. And ultimately, as cheesy as it sounds, live a life full of love and happiness.
So when I hesitantly answered, 'one day I'd like to sail around the world', there felt no time like the present. After a couple of clicks on google, there I was on the Clipper website having sent in my application. And before not too long, I was setting sail from Liverpool.
Little did I know that the year that was about to unfold would have been so eventful. I've had 5 skippers. I've experienced the loss of a boat and my original team, Greenings. I've enjoyed the camaraderie of 3 teams, and fully embraced life on Dare To Lead. I've learnt to be a sail maker, a media representative and a team coordinator. I've had friends and family join me in ports all over the world. I've lost a school friend and my great uncle David, CEO of my supporters club. I've received the most overwhelming amount of love and support from friends and family back home. And I've made the most incredible lifelong friendships you could ever hope for.
I have just come off deck having celebrated the crossing of our original track from Liverpool 11 months ago. A moment enjoyed by all of our crew as we acknowledge the effort and hard work of the Dare To Lead team that have sailed CV25 around the world. Something quite remarkable. Something to be very proud of.
This year will certainly have changed the course of my life to come. Just thinking about our homecoming to Liverpool makes me well up with emotion and tears. Walking into the kitchen at home to enjoy a dinner with my family is the moment I've been longing for. And I know I can look back when I'm 90 years old, and be chuffed with what I've achieved.
So what next ? Well, I now need to re think my answer to “If you could do anything in the world, what would it be?”.
Huge thank you to everybody who has supported me this last year, in particular my Mum, Dad, Brother and Nana. You have made me who I am today, and I couldn't have done this without you.
Smiling, all the way to Liverpool.
P.S. A big shout out to Rupert's daughters who made us excellent rocky road, we polished off the last of it this morning! Great way to celebrate our achievements!