NOTE: This post is very long and full of feelings. If you are here mostly for travel photos, this is not the post you’re looking for.
I read a lot of travel blogs now, so I know that a lot of great things, and a lot of really terrible things, can happen to you when you go nomad.
Travel blogger Kate McCulley wrote a blog about her trepidation leaving her parents and worrying about her success far from home prior to leaving for southeast Asia in 2010.
I think her articulation of her fears is a sentiment shared by nearly everyone who takes this level of risk, whether in travel or something else. We’re courting a lot of chance. What if this doesn’t work out?
Travel is very romanticized. It is a stigmatized level of ungratefulness to get the chance to travel overseas and come back with complex feelings about what has happened to you instead of simple, gushy ones. In part, I’m writing this to remind us all that this mindset isn’t always fair to us. The world is a complex place, and we ourselves are complex.
By nature, I’m an overplanner. I take daily excursions into travel forums. I have Google doc itineraries and Pinterest boards for everywhere a person could possibly want to go. But on the grandest scale, a trip like this is something you can’t overplan. Either you do it or you don’t.
I don’t think I can live a life where “or you don’t” is permitted to rule my decisions.
This chart reminds me that I shouldn’t let it. It’s pinned above my desk at work (at least for the next two months that I have a desk).
The chart would suggest that my energy would be better spent ANYWHERE else, even making a Pinterest board about Thailand rock climbing locations, than worrying about what happens if I fail.
But I’ve actually gotten lucky with worries about this move going poorly. You see, I have a weapon that many others don’t.
It already happened to me.