I am 28 years old. There are certain things that are expected. I should have a house, and a successful career. Hard as I try, I struggle with these. In the last year, both of these things were within reach. Yet the goal in sight, I began to doubt myself. A steady corporate career didn’t fulfill me. The house felt like a life sentence. Easily I could have reached these things, but they didn’t bring me happiness.
A few months ago, we went for our honeymoon up in Maine. The cold nights had colored the trees, but the days were still warm. The sky was a deep sapphire, the waves crashed against the pink granite shore. September in Bar Harbor is busy with a different crowd. Families with excited children has moved on, replaced older couples enjoying their golden years.
I watched these couples during our trip. many of them struggled to get around. Many had lived long beautiful lives, and their bodies showed it. They were held back by breathless lungs and sore joints. They could only look on as we scrambled over precarious rocks, or ran down the pathways. They were not able to explore in the same way were, and there was something sad about it.
Sometimes I think that we wait too long to do what we love.
We tend to be a society that waits. We wait for the right job, the right person, the right house. We spend so much time focused on the future, There is a regimented script we are expected to follow. I just don’t understand why. We let our lives pass us by working for things we can’t take with us. We are taught to think that we need to follow this path to be happy.
As we think about traveling, I feel pressure. I feel like if we throw in the towel, we are quitting. I have been conditioned to think that success lies in the accumulation of possessions. Yet now I am aware of an important personal truth. I had those things, and they brought me despair. I don’t know why I am this was. But I value experiences over things, My souls needs substance and experience to be happy.
So I think it is time to follow my heart.
I want to get out there and explore while I am young. I don’t want to wait. To travel while I still can enjoy it. To be able to drive through the night. To crash out in the drivers seat after a long drive. The excitement of scrambling across uneven rock, mist spraying my face. I want to feel small as I stare out at Monument Valley. To gaze up into the darkness and see the entire universe laid out before me. To travel across the openness of Nebraska again. I want to pull over, and wander into the woods without a backward glance. I want to feel the rain on my face, and feel the freedom of the road.
I want fulfillment, plain and simple, and am ready to go out and find it.