I feel like I am going through a breakup. One of those unhealthy kinds, where you think about the person over and over again and just when you find strength to ‘move on’, you find yourself flicking through old photos of you together. Everything was going well, we were a match made in heaven and I swore it would last forever. A false sense of security was created and just as I was planning our life together, it was over.
I first experienced the sense of ‘wander’ at the age of 10. I must admit, I do recall complaining about the long nights on the road, but apart from that, I had experienced my first taste of the big, wide world. At 16, I went on a family trip to Thailand, at 17 I was flown to The Uk with a pit stop in Italy, at 19 I returned to Europe, followed by Thailand again and later, NZ. I had experienced so much, at such a young age but was still not completely convinced that the world was ‘the one’ for me. At any given chance, I would cling onto commitment and journal my way into another 5year, foolproof plan.
You know how people always say ” when you know, you know”, well, I knew. I think I can pin point the very moment that I knew I was done with the five year plan. We were lying in Hyde Park, attempting to soak up some of what the British like to call ‘summer’, when I suggested ditching our plans to head south to Cornwall and fly to Barcelona instead. We quickly jumped online and booked our flights for a week in Spain. Our plane landed and everyone on board started to clap, for reasons unknown, every passenger shared the mutual feeling of “F*8k, it feels good to be alive”.
I experienced another 1890 moments like this.
2 years later, I arrived back in Australia and was convinced I would never turn my back on travel. I was set in my ways, and so was my partner. We planned more trips overseas, weekends away and continued to work on establishing ourselves in the ‘blogging world’. I took off on my millionth flight to Europe 5 months later and Bali 2 months after that. I felt a sense of satisfaction and accomplishment that i had done what i said i would, stay true to the traveller within.
That was, until I stopped.
It didn’t happen over night, it was the gradual seduction of commitment that snuck in and sucked me away. It started with my old job (only the best job on the planet) asking me to come back and work for them, then it escalated to living in the small suburb i spent most of my youth in. From there, I started to feel the pressure to ‘save’ and stopped asking for time off. In July, I turned down another trip to Europe (did i mention it was paid?- YOU IDIOT) and decided it was ‘smarter’ to stay committed.
I was still planning weekends away, when I could, but it felt like I was in a long distance relationship that was obviously becoming stale. And before it knew it, I woke up and realised- I was no longer in a long term relationship with wanderlust. I had subconsciously said goodbye to a lifetime of travel. OUCH!
It took me a long time to realise that the break up with travel, was in fact, a good thing. You see, many things change when you meet that special someone (okay, now i am actually talking about a real relationship and not travel). Love becomes an act of giving and not taking, multiple sacrifices are required and a whole lot of big decision making takes place. I’m not really saying goodbye to a life of travel, I am saying it isn’t the most important thing in my world anymore and it can wait.
Jay and I have been lucky to have experienced so much of the world together and now we are in a stage of our life where we really do want to be each others ‘forever’. I realised my love affair with frolicking the globe was interfering with our future life planning. Jay loves to travel, but he is also a realist. He understands we have our entire lives before us and that there is no real hurry to tick off every country on the globe. He also know that I am very passionate about my career and deserve to be more recognised (which will require more study).
Jay is my reason within the doubt. He made me see clearly and in the most nurturing way possible, helped me let go of the urge to pack my bag every 5 seconds. He showed me that we can travel slow and still enjoy the life we are given, more closely to home. Most importantly, through his love, I learnt that ‘home’ is now nowhere and everywhere, as long as I am with him.
We still have several trips in the pipe line, but I have also been accepted into University, started the outline of my business plan and taken a step away from the things that do not need my full attention, right now.
Don’t get me wrong, we are totally still buying a drone and GoPro and 100% still share the passion for excitement, photography and new adventures. We are just hitting the slow-motion button on our ‘lets conquer this world’ mission statement.
ps. if you actually read this- you’re amazing, dedicated and the definition of persistent. Thank you!