As I was lying in bed restless last night, I thought about how to sum up why I’m doing this. Resonance to my announcement has been hesitant to say the least, no doubt because most people shrug and think “I’ll believe it when I see it”. I had been expecting this. So, why I am going to cycle around the world? When you ask people who’ve done it (or read their books), their answers range from “To raise money for charity” to “Because I can”. I find myself somewhere in between selfish and altruistic motives.
To prove a point. No matter how long you’ve been in a rut, no matter what people think of you, no matter how far away you see yourself from the ‘ideal you’ – you can still change. Surprise yourself. I live a straightforward, middle-class life and I guess many people find me fairly boring. Truth is, sometimes I find myself pretty boring, too! I find solace in other people’s adventures, but even though no one is expecting this of me (or believing it, for that matter), I still believe I can do it, and do it well. Because in the end, it doesn’t matter one bit what picture people have of you. What matters is whether you like yourself and whether you can live up to the picture YOU have of, well, you. So instead of dwelling on why I’m boring and why everyone else’s life seems to be more exciting, I’m living up to my own expectations.
To be a better Me. I can be much stronger and more persevering than I am right now. I’ve fought back from depression when my mother suddenly died and I was only 14, I’ve dealt with the breaking of my own family and found a way back to them, I have suffered heartache, major setbacks in University and most recently, failure at University. Somehow I used to go at these challenges with more panache. There is absolutely no reason to believe that this would be the one thing I cannot do. On the contrary. I’m very used to being by myself, and I feel most confident when I deal with catastrophes on my own. Teamwork has always confused me.
I want to get back to the way I used to be. Reckless and courageous, standing up for what I believe in and not letting anyone dampen my spirits. Nowadays, it is easy to place the seed of doubt in my mind. No more. When I return, I will be a better me.
To inspire others to break free. When my boyfriend and I decided to go on a trip around the world after grad school, many people said they wished they could do that, too. I firmly believe that travel is one of those few things that anyone can have a go at… if they really want to. During college, I had little spending money, but I still managed to break free on a regular basis and do ridiculous things. I once drove 12 hours to the South of France.. just because Carcassonne was a place I’d read about in a novel and I really wanted to go. So I did. Then I really wanted to do a trip across the USA. Greyhound passes were super cheap at the time (and so were flights, the good old days..). I ate spaghetti and yoghurt for the better part of two months, but I did it. I went and had a fabulous time. Now I feel stuck and don’t know what purpose my life has. I desperately need to spend time with myself, see more, meet more people, and dream bigger. So I will.
Stop dreaming about what you could do if only you had the money, the time, the willpower,… figure it out. If you really want it, you’re going to do it.