I have heard that people go through big changes about every 7 years in their lives. I don’t know if that’s true but it did kind of go like for me. Around the age of 8 I decided one day I wanted to sail around the world and with 14 I left. However with 21 I realised I had married someone that I couldn’t possibly stay together with.
My marriage to Daniel did definitely not turn out the way I thought it would. Shortly after marriage it became as if I was merely seen as a possession rather than a wife. But not only that I somehow ended up doing everything. From cooking, washing cleaning to earning our entire income and trying to see that we could survive from this. Meanwhile Daniel didn’t want to compromise by eating more simple food and continue living aboard Guppy which didn’t have a shower or fridge. But worst of all I was also encouraged to stop my sailing dreams. And if there is something I realised, it’s that I can’t live without a boat or sailing! And nobody can change that.
After trying very hard every day to make our marriage work I realised it actually had been years since I had followed my own dreams, that it even had been years since I had really felt like I could be completely myself. Of course I had given a promise, and I was willing to find compromises, but I don’t think anyone should stay in a marriage if you lose track of yourself because of it .
More than two year ago I decided to divorce Daniel, and go my own way.
Maybe the sad state of mind I was in for a while made me decide to loan out Guppy. Giving me time to find my feet again, or so I thought..
But with that it didn’t end, It rather seemed I was falling from one disaster into the next when Guppy was destroyed by LifeSail in August 2018, I never felt so hopeless in my life. Losing the one thing that I had poured my heart and soul into and thought I had loaned out into safe hands. The consequences of Guppy’s stranding are following me to this day as I fight to make things right. But of course live goes on, giving up does not exist in my dictionary 😉 I kept going and poured all my focus and energy into my new project the” Laura Dekker World Sailing Foundation” which led me to Europe often for meetings.
While I was there in 2017 I was invited for a sail race in the Netherlands called the ”singlehanded”
The event organisers gave me the choice to sail on a Waarschip 900 or a Mini 6.50. A Mini 6.50 is a very unsuitable boat for that race as it’s made for long distance ocean racing and not a round the buoy racing boat. But the mini 6.50 is kind of rare race boat and I saw it as a great opportunity to sail on one so of course I choose the mini. Sander who owns the boat and also build it didn’t count on it that I would really choose to borrow his unsuitable boat and had said it as more of a joke. It came as a big a shock. But if you say A you also have to say B. And this was for the both of us. I was a little nervous to get the borrowed race boat back in one piece after the race. This boat has a canting keel, way too much sail, daggerboards, running backstays which really can’t be forgotten – it’s far from easy to sail. But also he was nervous to loan out the boat from which he had been dreaming and working on since childhood. We sailed the boat together to the starting point of the race. It turned out to be a beautiful race and Sander and I quickly became very good friends. It was the first time after all this years with Daniel that I realised how much fun it is to share my passions with someone who understands. Someone who has grown up in a very similar way as me. Sander and I also grew up sailing the same boat, a mirror, which in Holland is a very unknown boat, so a very cool coincidence. It can be very hard to find the right person to sail with. But we have the same way of doing things on board and while sailing we just automatically know what to do without much communication needed.
I always thought two very stubborn and determined people don’t fit together, but we actually really fill each other in and stimulate each other to follow our dreams. Working on them together is big fun!
It seemed clear to everyone strait away that we belonged together, but somehow we hadn’t really seen or admitted that to ourselves yet. However we stayed in close contact and it didn’t take very long before we both traveled to each other and realised we are much happier together. It’s been so much fun to sail together, work on the Guppy xl project, talk and build up my life again, which since a short while Includes being a mom!
I have always really wanted kids and couldn’t be happier with the beautiful boy we have now and a great partner to share this little bundle of joy with.
Of course it’s all very new being parents and we’re both learning as we go, but I think most of us do 😉
My grandma gave me a great book called: Die andere moeders doen ook maar wat – which is translated from Dutch: ”The other mums are also only doing something”
I’m loving it, almost every moment of it. The sailing certainly is very good preparation for getting out of bed every few hours 😉
Our little boy is called Tim, he has been sailing with us a lot already and will gain some extra miles again this month as we will do a delivery of over 3000nm.
Here is a photo of us, I hesitated a long time to post all this to my blog as I like to keep private life somewhat,.. private 😉 But then I realised there’s a lot of people very curious as to what I have been up to and how could I keep withholding the joy of finding new love after the disaster in the past years and bringing a new little human into this world :-).
I do however wish to keep our little one out of public as much as possible. and so I do hope this will be respected.