For Those Who Travel (Or Want To)
Dear Fellow Traveler,
I think when one is deciding to travel you must ask yourself if you are scared or just not ready. There is a difference. Being scared of the unknown is inherent in all of us. It’s a natural fear and it’s legitimate. You may be scared of leaving your friends, of leaving your comfort zone, of leaving your material possessions. Taking the plunge is terrifying and massive and sometimes lonely as hell but it is the most ‘worth it‘ thing you can ever do. My advice would be to go with the choice that scares you the most. It will help you grow. Run like hell from anyone who tells you that you aren’t worth it. That you can’t do it.
I will be honest. I travel because I can’t say that I lived all experiences I have wanted to live yet. I have let my toes kiss the sand on beaches in Thailand, drank wine under the stars, skinny dipped in Cambodia, and zip-lined across the treetops, but I’m not finished.
I like my life the way it is when I am traveling. Unconstrained. Free. And if you are like me, you probably do as well. I want to be shameless. I want to experiment. I want to be able to kiss a stranger in any corner of the world, drink an espresso in Paris, climb mountains and feel the rush of the air on my wind-chapped cheeks. I want to own moments, not investments. I want to celebrate being madly, crazily in love with my life.
This is for those who don’t want to settle. Don’t feel bad about your burning desire for more. To keep quiet about this desire is one of the biggest disservices you can do to yourself. I won’t feel guilty for it. I won’t feel guilty for not settling on the most valuable thing in my life- my happiness. I won’t feel guilty because I want more. Not everyone wants kids and a relationship and a white picket fence. I want windy bus rides to God-knows-where, fleeting longing glances on train rides, cups of chai passed to me from locals. I want to watch a sunset and applaud when it’s finished because I was just lucky enough to witness a tiny miracle.
The fear of failing holds so many of us back. My greatest fear in life is that I won’t live up to the potential that I have set for myself, the dreams that I can see, that I can almost touch, will be unattainable. What I’ve realized though, is that failure is inevitable. So things don’t go as planned? So what? You pick yourself up and you try again. You live. That’s what you do. My advice to you would be to embrace uncertainty and the chaos. These times that seem so perilous and scary won’t have a chapter until much later in your life.
Keep your heart open, keep your spirit brave, and don’t apologize for your fierce appetite for life.
You shouldn’t feel the need to be in a relationship, or have a mortgage payment, or anything else that society is shoving down your throat. Call me idealistic or whimsical or foolish but my wanderlust nature drives me forward and I can’t, nor do I want to stop it. My heart longs for things I don’t even know yet, things I haven’t even experienced yet. Something in me wants more.
I’m not sorry. And you shouldn’t be either.