Roots and Wings

I graduate college next year. I graduate college next year, and honestly I think that I’m a little terrified. I mean, that’s usually the natural response to something like this. Or at least it has been for everyone that I’ve known that’s graduated already. But they eventually picked themselves up and have started to make something out of themselves.

I just hope that transfers to everyone that turns their tassels come graduation day.

The only difference between me and most of them is that while they are laying down roots I’m trying to figure out where my next travel destination will be. There’s so much more of this world that I have yet to and want to see and explore. So, unless I get a job out of college that lets me travel and work at the same time that I actually enjoy than I may be forced to start rooting myself. That would be cool if Missouri was where I wanted to stay all of my life. Which I don’t. I’ve lived here for going on 26 years, and while they’ve been some good years, they haven’t made me want to stay much longer.

A while ago during a late night Facebook conversation. a friend of mine pointed out to me that I was restless. Of course I am. I’ve seen five countries in the span of two weeks and what I saw was very little. Of course my natural inclination right now is to fly rather than fight.

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A few things that I’ve noticed while I travel is that that big black cloud of depression that likes to hang over me in my daily life seems to dissipate and the straight jacket of anxiety tends to loosen up its hold. So, obviously I’m doing something right. Right?

However…..

I have this nagging feeling deep inside that I want to lay down some roots or something. I think what it is is my desire to want to take care of something and in turn be taken care of.

While I’m quite fond of being the independent woman that I am (I think I am), I have also been single for going on four years now. I realize that that’s not a lot of time compared to some people. For example, my mom; she’s been single/divorced for almost eight years now and she seems to be doing pretty well. But there are days when I know that she would do anything to have someone by her side to help carry some of the weight of her stressful life. For that I don’t blame her either. If anything, I want her (and my brothers by proxy) to be happy.

I come from a family of tough, driven and stubborn women so it could be years before I reach whatever it is I really want out of life. So for now I’ll just have to work at chipping away at this shell that I’ve built up around myself by myself.

On Wanderlust..

A few days ago I posted a status on Facebook posing a very simple question, “When are you at your most happiest?” The responses began to pour in shortly after and some of them were fairly predictable becaScreen Shot 2014-09-08 at 1.04.00 AMuse I’d like to think that I know my friend’s pretty well.

When I initially thought of the question I hadn’t given it a second thought to even answer the question myself. That is until I went to a meeting with my advisor and we briefly discussed our Study Abroad trip to Europe that we went on last May and he brought up how he had noticed how calm I had been throughout the whole trip. That’s when it hit me, I had found my answer to my own question.

I noticed that on my travels my anxiety that usually held me back actually seemed to disappear. I don’t know why or even how, but for some reason getting on my first plane(s) made any and all stress that I may have had previously dissolved. Kind of like the clouds when you get up close to them in an airplane. Even while we were in foreign cities where we couldn’t even read the street signs and had to rely on our wits and minimal wifi coverage to get back to our hotel I seemed to flourish.  Yes, I was still a little nervous and scared, but I wasn’t overcome with crushing anxiety that would have left me in the fetal position in the middle of the sidewalk while passerby looked on in bewilderment.  

Even when I traveled alone to Chicago to stay with a friend last year I was still cool under pressure. So, I guess that I would call that one of my strengths.  I even took a train from one end of town to the other (at night) on my own and made it back to my friend’s house in one piece. So yes, I’m pretty damn fearless these days. 

 

It’s become apparant to me that I am at my most happiest when I am traveling.

 

After a quarter of a century in the same place things start to get a little stale, and I’ve noticed that this has unfortunately been happening a lot. Don’t get me wrong, I love my family and my fiends, but there’s something inside of me that is practically scratching at my insides to get out. I think that that thing may just be a mix of my wanderlust and need to be somewhere different for awhile.

This summer before I came back to school I got to go to a family cabin in the mountains of Colorado with a bunch of my family members that I don’t see that often. While I was there it was the most relaxing and stress free week of my life. Well, my trip to Europe in May was too, but I wasn’t there that long. I only got to taste crumbs of each place we went to, which is why I’m going back after I graduate college for a vacation/to look for jobs. When I was in Colorado my family and I just relaxed, I mean there was a palpable feeling of relaxation in the air. It could also be from the high altitude or the copious amounts of alcohol that we were all drinking, but either way it was fantastic.

That being said, I need to travel somewhere again. My luggage is starting to look a little lonely in it’s corner.