The above picture was taken in Sydney when I went on an excursion to find Mary Ann Street. Well, I found it! Or should I say that I found myself 😉
“A mind that is stretched by a new experience can never go back to its old dimensions.” – Oliver Wendell Holmes
Cheers to my two year anniversary of arriving in Sydney! I’m still amazed that it’s gone by so quickly. It feels like just yesterday that I was beginning my adventures in the land Down Under. But as I reflect on these past two years, I’ve realized that the only constant thing is change.
Everything changes even if we can’t see it with our own two eyes. For instance, when I came back home 7 months ago, I thought everything was the same. Like it had been frozen in time. Yet, everything felt different. Because although I didn’t see it yet, I had changed. Dramatically. I used to question whether I was indeed changing while I was still traveling. I couldn’t see it but I hoped that it was happening (see Exhibit A).
What I realized recently is that when you spend 18 months traveling on your own through foreign lands, it’s almost impossible NOT to change. Now, you can change for the worse or for the better. I’m happy to report that I changed for the better. I can never go back to the person that I used to be. My views and perspectives on life have been altered forever. I have a different opinion of the world around me. Henry Miller once said, “One’s destination is never a place, but a new way of seeing things.” That’s the gift that travel gives us.
It’s funny because when I while I was traveling, I felt like I wasn’t changing enough or it wasn’t fast enough. The reality was that I just couldn’t see it because it was happening to me. Once I came home though, I started to see it. And it made me happy too. Like the purpose of my trip was fulfilled (well, at least part of it).
I’m so blessed to have been given the opportunity to leave my hometown and travel the world. Not everyone is so lucky. Plus I had a blast along the way too 🙂 I know that all the lessons that I’ve learned and the experiences that I’ve had will help me in the future. I now believe in myself and I am becoming confident with who I am. That is beautiful.
Now do I have a serious case of Wanderlust lately? Sure I do! But most travelers can empathize with the same feelings. Wanderlust is defined as, “a strong desire to travel.” Other people call it being “bit by the travel bug.” It happens to most people who travel for long periods of time. Sometimes the desire to travel never dissipates but instead lasts a lifetime, only to be satisfied by embarking on a new adventure. But it’s a small price to pay.
I read an interesting article that explained a theory of why we experience wanderlust. When you deeply connect to a place, sometimes we can leave pieces of our energy behind there. I like to think of it like leaving pieces of your heart in places that really touched your soul. I definitely have left bits of my heart in certain places and I would love to return to these spots one day in the future. Wanderlust almost feels like you’re no longer whole anymore and that you need to go back to these locations to retrieve what you left behind.
Life is fleeting. Enjoy the time that you have on this planet and never take a second for granted. Love the people who are close to you because you never know when it may be the last time you see each other. Change happens. That is life. But we can learn to go with the flow and embrace this inevitable change. Let’s truly live our lives fully. I will leave you all with a few quotes that I thought were fantastic:
“We travel, some of us forever, to seek other places, other lives, other souls.” – Anais Nin
“When I had nothing to lose, I had everything. When I stopped being who I am, I found myself.” – Paulo Coelho
“Man cannot discover new oceans unless he has the courage to lose sight of the shore.” – Andre Gide
Until next time, stay awesome! Sending lots of love to all of you.