I wrote this maybe 2 days before we all got laid off from our jobs due to Coronavirus. It’s pretty crazy looking back and realizing that I was feeling restless then, and now I’ve been home for almost 4 months and am juuuust starting to feel that little itch to travel again.
Six Months of Van Living…
How can something simultaneously feel so long and so short? I took one of Ashley Galvin’s yoga classes today and she talked about noticing how your mind starts to race when you slow down and there’s no physical movement to distract you. I laid there in pigeon pose thinking about how true that is for my life. When we’re moving and traveling it’s really easy to not get caught up in… well, honestly, much of anything. We’re so busy finding places to sleep, get water, eat, planning routes and stops… There’s no time to really worry about too much. It’s easy to focus on existing and completing tasks one at a time. When we’re stationary though, whether that be in the van or the house we fall into routines. I have too much time to think. My mind starts to wander. Restlessness sweeps in like a summer storm, unexpected but powerful. I find myself craving movement, new places, old places and familiar faces, anything but the last few months day to day.
When people hear what our current living situation is we basically get one of three reactions; “Man, I wish I would have done that when I was younger,” “Good luck with that,” or “Man you guys are living the dream, I wish I could drop everything in my life and travel too.”
The middle of the Forest. Birds singing, the smell of earth, crisp fall air, the faint sound of water gushing through a creek in the distance. Not another human soul for miles. Exactly where I’d dreamt of being for the past 3 months. I should be ecstatic but instead I feel… disheveled, stressed, definitely not carefree and adventurous as I’d imagined I would be. I got sick, basically the day I lost the health insurance through my work. Our renters were giving us problems we weren’t anticipating. Driving the van on curving mountain roads was more nerve-racking than I thought it would be. My thoughts were constantly racing… Is this not all that it’s cracked up to be? Should we have just sold the house instead of dealing with tenants? How am I going to pay to see a doctor?
What an absolute whirlwind August has been. If you don’t follow us on Instagram or YouTube it might come as a surprise that we are currently fully living out of the van. Yeah, that escalated quickly. Allow me to try to wrap up this insane month for you in as short of a time as possible.
At the beginning of August we were starting to get a little concerned about getting the house rented in time. I had already given my notice to work that I would be leaving the last day of the month, and getting the house occupied was the only thing keeping us from experiencing, as my dad said, “failure to launch.” After debating for a few weeks we finally decided to allow the rental company to put the house up for a year lease instead of the 9 months we had originally planned. That meant we were fully committing to 1 year in the van. THE NEXT DAY, I got a call that the house was rented. We were completely blown away, grateful, jumping for joy, ecstatic. Also, pretty much panicked to get the van and house ready in time. In short: Shit just got real.
There’s something that has been weighing on my heart for a while now. It’s something news outlets and social media don’t really want you to believe. It’s something that as we continue to progress on the van and share more of our lives to the public we are starting to see a lot more of. It’s something I hoped was true, but never really witnessed enough of to truly believe.
Last night was such a great night. I got home from work, and even though I was dealing with the remnants of a migraine I got a really good workout in. Then, my good pal Tim messaged me and said the waves were on so I grabbed my longboard which I haven’t ridden in probably 2 months and got some super fun clean waves on it. It felt so good to be back on that thing. Then I met Zach for sushi, and got to ride behind the van on the way home and see it in action.
I was sitting there taking a picture of the back of it because looking at it made me feel so good. Like I was doing exactly what I was supposed to be doing. Like my dream of traveling this country was finally coming true. Then a car pulled up to me, windows all down, with a couple just absolutely screaming at each other. Horrible stuff. Stuff I wouldn’t say to my least favorite human in the world. It hit me like a brick. Not everyone is having such an amazing experience in their life. I felt really lucky to have the opportunity that lies ahead of me, but also really really sad.
As I sit on this airplane making my way home from Prague, I can’t help but smile. It’s a long way from the anxiety, stress, and sadness I felt a few months ago on the flight home from Paris. It’s a long way from the trepidation I felt as I left home just a week ago for this trip.
I was scared to leave again. I didn’t want to spend my entire trip wishing I was somewhere else. Wishing the opportunity away. I sat on the couch when I should have already been in the car, wishing that some circumstance or another could keep me home where I feel safe and happy and loved. Unfortunately for me at the time, there was no family emergency I needed to stay home for, no inclement weather keeping the plane from taking off, and no illness that would keep me bedridden until the event was over. I had to go.
A voice in the back of my head was telling me to trust. Trust that things would be better this time. A small voice, but a voice nonetheless. I listened. I went. It was so good.
If you’re reading this, that means we reached 100 subscribers on our You Tube Channel and our link isn’t 50 letters long and hideous anymore! Woo! We wanted to sincerely thank each and every one of you for following along with and supporting us as we push for our dream to become a reality.
Do you ever feel like your life is just a whirlwind of events and you’re stuck trying to catch up all the time? Same. Especially lately between the van build, trying to get the house ready to be rented for the winter, working full time, traveling overseas for another job, all the while trying to find time to workout, eat well and enjoy summer a little bit. Woah, writing it out actually makes it seem even more overwhelming.
To Whom it May Concern,
I can think of a million things this world needs and it’s funny, but none of them include your negativity.