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"I'm thinking of moving to Melbourne"
It’s hard to believe that 6 small words completely changed my life trajectory this year. One afternoon in March as I sat in my bedroom in Perth, I was nervously looking for the perfect moment to tell my family “I’m thinking of moving to Melbourne”.
Even as an adult, having a disability that makes me reliant on others makes it hard, at times, to believe that I have complete control over my life. When your every move is reliant on other people saying yes – yes to accepting a shift, yes to helping you get out of bed, yes to helping you attend sport – it becomes a habit to think of the possibilities of someone not saying yes. It was why I was so nervous to let my family know about my intention to relocate. What would happen if they said ‘no’?
But when I said those words, “I’m thinking of moving to Melbourne”, I was surprised by the response. “That sounds amazing! Even if we weren’t happy, we couldn’t actually stop you, you are an adult after all,” my family told me. My mum actually said that she could see it coming, that if I didn’t have a disability she suspects I’d already be living interstate, if not overseas. It was the validation that I needed, reassuring me that this was the correct path for me.
My family did initially have reservations about me moving out of the family home for the first time to a state on the other side of the country. Being a 3½ hour flight from my family was a far cry from the original plan of moving a 25 minute drive away!
Photo of Rebecca in her power wheelchair outside Rod Laver Arena in Melbourne.
But after originally recommending that I move out of the family home into an apartment in Perth first, they soon saw my enthusiasm for a move to Melbourne – and all the opportunities that would provide me – and encouraged me to jump feet first into my Melbourne move.
“If I hadn’t, I’d still be sitting in that bedroom in Perth, wondering what it would be like to live elsewhere.”
Fast forward a few months – and a few hurdles, which I’ll save for another time! – and I am now living the dream in Melbourne. I’m never one to do things by halves, and although my move has had its challenges, I’m so very glad that I uttered those 6 words earlier this year. If I hadn’t, I’d still be sitting in that bedroom in Perth, wondering what it would be like to live elsewhere.
If you are someone reading this who wants to make a change to your home, your supports, or any other major life change, I’d say this: Tell someone you trust. Whether it be family, close friends or even a support coordinator. For me, this interstate move wouldn’t have been possible without the support of a whole team of people.
Get the discussion rolling around where you want to live or who you want to be supported by and see where life takes you! As I found out, it only takes one sentence to completely change your life.
Rebecca is the Housing Hub’s Lived Experience Team Lead. Rebecca has a Bachelor of Psychology (Honours) from Curtin University.
Rebecca has SDA funding in her NDIS plan and is now living in a High Physical Support apartment in Melbourne's CBD.
Rebecca is passionate about advocating for people with disabilities and ensuring they have access to the information they need to live their best life, particularly regarding housing and the NDIS.
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