Permanently changeable

23 Jan

Permanence. It means ongoing, ever-lasting, unchanging for an indefinite length of time, forever… It amounts to stability and certainty. Why am I mentioning this? Well, just the other week, it came to my attention that I am now entitled to apply for my permanent residency visa (where did that two years go since first lodging my visa application?!) Also cue lots of thoughts back to the weeks of collating an encyclopaedia’s worth of information documenting the legitimacy of our relationship. So now, I am at that stage again – requesting a police check from the Australian Federal Police, asking friends to make declarations as to the ongoing nature of our relationship and writing our own personal statements about how we financially and emotionally support each other. Fun times ahead. It also struck me then how at the moment, I am not permanent: not in Australia, no longer in the UK and perhaps not even in Sydney (although that all very much depends on James and his work and the next move, which I am sure will be mentioned further down the line.)

It doesn’t really matter. I mean not being ‘permanent’ does not really change anything for me at the moment but it did get me thinking how it would be nice to have something certain and unchanging for a while. We have each other and that of course, will always be the constant, but having no permanent job, not even a ‘permanent residence’ can make the idea of permanence (previously something to be looked down on with derision as boring and unadventurous) suddenly quite appealing.

Even at the start of the year, as I was looking to make myself a permanent resident here, I was further disentangling myself from the UK Inland Revenue, filing my final tax return (which incidentally took five times longer than usual for a poultry four-month period because I had to get my head around what defined ‘non-resident’, ‘ordinarily resident’ ‘non-domicile’ and not to mention split tax-years and remittance claims… I still don’t know so don’t ask.)

So the start of 2013 has been busy: not just with flitting between UK and Australian admin but about looking at finding a route to publication for my novel, looking at a permanent job and looking at longer-term plans and investments for that stability and certainty in our future. It is easier said than done and in itself, quite time-consuming but hopefully will lead to a sense of permanence at some point!

Not that being married to a Naval officer will ever really allow for that and this then begs the question: is there any point applying for the ‘permanent job’ if you’re not hanging around? (And yes, I have had the internal conversation about not living life on ‘what-ifs’.) But it can be hard to really have that focus and motivation to apply for a dream job if you’re going to uproot in the near future. (I’m imagining the interview: Q. ‘And where do you see yourself in five years time?’ A. ‘Um… Maybe not even in this city, or country or…’ Probably not the ‘progressing nicely through the company, taking advantage of training opportunities and blah blah’ answer they were expecting.)

So, a busy few weeks but hopefully constructive and you know, they say a change is as good as the rest and right now, things are well, permanently changing!


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