Having kids was by far the greatest challenge I have had in my life. I normally live for challenges, but becoming a 24/7 service worker after a lifetime of freedom was more than I could deal with. This blog is part of my project of finding back to who I am.
My parents gave me the travel bug during early childhood. After spending the childhood traveling in Asia, living in the Middle East or venturing deep inside the African Savannah the world will never be the same. Once a traveller- always a traveller.
With the age of 14 I was discovered by a model agency, and two years later I was already living and working as a model in Milan. I followed by moving to Paris after high school, and travelled the world going on photo shoots. But around the time I turned 20 I was depressed. I realized it was the job as a model that was the culprit. It was too superficial. It was not in tune with what I valued in life. Instead of living up to other peoples expectations I wanted to be true to myself, so I quit modeling. The following year was spent in South America working as a volunteer in the slum of Quito, Ecuador, and backpacking around the continent. I continued backpacking through Asia and combined traveling with my bachelor degree in Social Anthropology and Human Geography. These subjects were great ways of justifying my travels. I finished up my Bachelor with a semester in Costa Rica, and followed up by traveling north through Central America. Next stop was Florida for a few months of skydiving. I had been skydiving since I was 18, but due to my globetrotting I hadn’t had much time to focus on it. I wanted to work up a better skill level. And then I discovered base jumping, and got hooked.
I did my master degree in Human Geography specializing in Development- and Urban Studies. In the middle of this I took a semester off from University to work as a model again in Hamburg. All my savings from earlier years were spent, and I had grown older and could keep an emotional distance to this job. It was just an extra income, not a lifestyle like before. Part of the master degree in Human Geography involved doing fieldwork, I chose Venezuela. Here I had friends from earlier travels, and I could fulfill my dream of base jumping from Angel Falls. But I fractured my ankle on a skydive during the first month there and ended up spending the remainder of the 6 months jumping around on crutches. I managed to do my field work where I compared a slum upgrading program in two slums in Caracas, but there was no base jumping. This event was a turning point in my life. Opposite of what everybody else would have thought it made me realize how important jumping was to me, and that I wanted to do it full-time. But base jumping and skydiving are time consuming sports. If you want to be good at them, not to mention safe, you need to invest time and energy. Returning home, I spent all my spare time base jumping around the mountains of Norway and Europe. But before I finished my master degree I worked as an intern with the UN in Kenya, a place I also found a cliff to jump off. And here I fractured my second ankle! Now I was more determined than ever to base jump. I finished my master degree, jumped as much as I could, and at the same time signed a sponsorship agreement with Berghaus Ltd.
In 2006 I got a job in Pakistan with The Norwegian Refugee Council helping the supply of shelter after the big earthquake. I lived close to Abbottabad (where Bin Laden also lived) and used to go there often after work to base jump off what looked like a home made cable car crossing a valley. Wonder if he heard of me?! The crazy flying woman? ha ha. I also found time to explore the Kashmiri mountains and later the Himalayas, and my love for the mountains in Pakistan grew so much that I returned after my contract expired to climb Spantik (7025m). During my 6 months in Pakistan some friends of mine had jumping accidents, some fatal and one miraculously survived. It made me think about my values in life, was it more important to me to follow my own adventures, or spend time with friends and family? I chose the latter, and moved home permanently. I met the love of my life, my husband to be, and moved in with him. I didn’t stop exploring and going on fun trips and expeditions, but I was more present at home. I had been practicing yoga for many years, and in 2009 I finished my 200 hours teacher training and got pregnant. And here the new story of my life starts. I gave birth to a son in 2010 and a daughter in 2012. I quit base jumping due to the risk, and I more or less quit everything else in my life due to the fact that there is no time. A lot of mothers find themselves when they have kids. They love the new mommy role. I on the other hand felt like I lost myself. This blog is part of my project to try and define this new role as a mom and find a balance between motherhood and being myself.
My webpage: BellyandBaby -Yoga for pregnancy and newbie mums. This is what I do for a living.