Lately, I feel like I’m watching everyone around me launch themselves into commitment while I’m running in the opposite direction from it. Some days I want to turn around. But maybe not right now. I’m watching my friends make compromises from a distance with a strange hyper-awareness to the reality that I don’t have to do that – that perhaps I am not ready to do that.
I left my job several weeks ago. Quit in order to join the ranks of many other twentysomething’s embracing an arguably cliche but still admirable desire to travel – or maybe just embrace a change of scenery for a little while. That’s not totally why I handed in my notice, but definitely the road I planned on taking in the aftermath.
And I’m not going to pretend that I’m not, on occasion, terrified.
This decision is both totally in line with who I am and completely not in line with who I am. After all, I’m stability’s number one fan. Routine is my best friend. I love showers – I crave showers. Consistency, cleanliness, and rest are at the top of not only some of my favourite things, but also things I need in my life in order to remain a functional person.
I’ve been daydreaming about a plane flight that departs tonight until my mind starts drifting towards what I’m going to do when I get back to Vancouver at the end of October. I am constantly pulling myself back – trying to keep myself from making plans for three months from now when right now is right in front of me. Believe me, I’m working on it. And perhaps this might be one of the greatest lessons I’m trying to teach myself. A lesson in letting go, unclenching my fists, and forcing my thoughts back to the current moment.
Because there’s also the other side. The side where I adore being in new places, even when it terrifies me – especially when it terrifies me. The side where I find comfort and strength in the feeling I get when I do something that makes me nervous. Or the part where I crave the solitude that comes with being on my own or being somewhere far away with just a few other people.
So there’s two sides, I suppose. And I’m trying to balance both of them. Naturally, a part of me is freaking out a little bit, and the other part is counting down the seconds until I’m on an airplane. In some ways, this really isn’t that different than my everyday life anyway. Always half scared, searching for a hiding place, and half ready to run towards whatever is coming next. It’s as though I live my life both consciously and subconsciously in an effort to qualify for a little word called bravery.