I wish I could be a good blogger. A blogger who actually follows up on all the post ideas that she thinks of and who blogs things in chronological order, and shares travel diaries after trips and Friendsgiving posts before Thanksgiving is officially over.
But you know what? I’m not, and that’s okay. Because blogging to me is simply about releasing emotions. It’s about driving down the road and hearing a song and putting the words in my head and the feelings in my heart to paper (or you know, the internet). It’s about simply releasing these words into a place that is far bigger than the four corners of my mind.
Usually my blog posts come about because I bottle my emotions for far, far too long and then music, hearing a simple song, breaks my heart quite literally in half. There are some songs that just get me. Or I get them, I can never tell for sure. It’s almost like there are certain songs, and certain chords, that pull on my heartstrings until I can’t hold my emotions back anymore.
But guess what? This time I’m trying something new. Instead of breaking first, I’m writing. And I have so many thoughts.
This year has been a crazy season in my life. I’m looking back now, in December, and realizing that I never truly understood what it meant when those older than me told me to cherish the time that I have now, in this present moment, because growing up makes everything pass by more quickly than ever.
It seems like just a few weeks ago that I made my one big New Years resolution. And now, after 11 months, I’ve decided to break it.
Here’s the thing.
My New Years resolution was a travel goal. If you know me, then you know that it’s my passion to adventure and to explore, and I have a job that gives me the incredible opportunity to travel the world. I’ve found that it’s both a blessing and a curse to work for an airline. The blessing is that travel doesn’t break the bank, and the curse is that it puts an insatiable taste for adventure in your soul. At least, it does for me.
Last January, I decided that I wanted to see more. I had been working at American Airlines for a year and a half by then and I’d tested the waters of standby travel and decided that I couldn’t waste my benefits and that I had to do more. I made a goal: 12 months, 12 trips. It didn’t matter if they were big or small, I was going to get out and explore at least once a month.
And I did. With the exception of the month of August where I was part of a wedding shower, bridal shower, bachelorette party and wedding, I’ve gone on at least one trip per month. (I actually did plan a day-trip in August where my flight got cancelled right after I got through security because of the weather, but we don’t have to talk about that.)
You guys, I’ve flown 56,584 miles around the world this year. That’s 2.3x around the entire EARTH. I’m very proud of myself, but there’s also something else. Something that’s been lingering in the back of my mind. I’ve tried to push it down because I didn’t want to face the facts. That I was exploring to my hearts content, seeing places that other people only dreamed about, and at the end of the day. I wasn’t fulfilled.
Now don’t get me wrong. I have LOVED traveling this year. From Japan to London to Milwaukee to Maine to Lisbon. It’s been incredible. My camera roll currently holds 26,000+ photos and I look back at them sometimes and can’t actually believe that I’ve been able to see what I have in my lifetime. I don’t take the ability to travel for granted, and I never will.
But last week, I had one of the lowest days of my life. I can remember the tears running down my face as a friend heard me hurting and became a listening ear to my pain. She didn’t judge me or try to fix me, she simply listened. And I appreciate that more than words can say.
I think it all started with my previous post. It’s like a tiny little match lit with those words I wrote and I realized that this year, traveling has been my way of escape. It’s hard for me to talk about traveling when I get home. It’s almost like I want to bottle those moments away for myself only. Like when I’m traveling, I’m a different person.
I read something today that really put this year into perspective.
“She was the tide, always drifting in and out of the lives of those who loved her, eternally indecisive, unable to discern whether she enjoyed the solidity and safety of land, or the wild freedom of the ocean.”
-Beau Taplin // W i l d O c e a n
My heart craves adventure. And even though I wouldn’t change this year at all, I feel like I need to re-evaluate. I’ve been drifting, in and out of those moments of wild freedom and I’ve realized that it’s not enough to block out the fears and the unfulfilled desires that I have when I get back home. I don’t want my passion of traveling to become a hiding place. A place that seems magical to those on the outside, who only see brief moments captured in time on my social media feed.
And so I’ve decided, I’m okay with breaking this goal with one month left in the running. I’ve been learning that my stubbornness doesn’t always lead me to the best decisions. I’ve been learning how to listen to my fears instead of pushing them away. I don’t know all the answers. I don’t know what will happen in the next week or month, or year. But I know one thing. I know that I’m human. And that it’s okay to hurt sometimes. And that every single thing happens for a reason.
It’s time to trust, and to explore my heart a little bit, and to accept the people, the situations, and the dreams and the disasters that God puts in my way.