There’s a wave of nostalgia that is running through my body. On Friday, in exactly 32 hours and 36 minutes from now, I am officially taking an indefinite vacation from my long-term vacation. In layman’s term, I am going back to the corporate world of employment.
The past two years has been surreal. It felt too long and yet it went by too fast. I didn’t even realize that it will come to an indefinite break.
The infinite set of possibilities allowed me to visit places that I didn’t even know existed, to experience adventures I never even dreamed of, and to meet people who proved that indeed, the world is filled with genuine beauty and kindness.
When I first dreamed of “long-term travel” back in 2012, I envisioned myself backpacking in Europe for 3 months. Life happened and it wasn’t until 2015 that I actually had the opportunity to travel without time-restrictions. By then, 3 months seemed to short and I found myself going for 1 year–only to realize that I could go for second.
Life happened even when I was traveling. Not just for me but for the people that I love. As much as I wanted to stay on the road continuously, I couldn’t fathom the idea of missing out important family occasions anymore. I missed a lot when I was living in Dubai. This is why I tried to grab every opportunity to be at home even if it meant cutting my trip short. It even got harder to leave when my sister gave birth to a handsome, bouncy baby boy. I wanted to be there. Always.
The biggest personal struggle that I had faced was the lack of self-motivation that came up from time to time. It sounds hilarious for some people. But the truth is, constant traveling is tiring. No matter how many places you desired to see, there are times when you just want to take a break from all of it:
- the continuous planning (itinerary, transfers-bus, train, ferry, flights, accommodations)
- the constant movement
- the constant packing and unpacking
- the constant conscious “budgeting”
- the endless goodbyes and hellos
It happens all too fast, taking place every 1 to 5 days. It can get pretty overwhelming to the point of exhaustion.
The worst part for me was the point where I had to search for the purpose of my travels. There was a time when I felt a bit lost and confused. That feeling wherein I desired to see the world but couldn’t find my bearings (metaphorically) because at some point, traveling did not feel enough anymore. Coincidentally, I came across the book “Three Cups of Tea” that got me really inspired and yet, it made my so-called desire lack some meaning.
I wanted, needed to make an impact. I wanted to change the world. I wanted all of it to be the reason why I travel. But somehow, I didn’t know how and when to begin. I wanted to do something big and felt too small to do it. Exploring and experiencing was not enough.
I don’t really know how I got past that struggle. Honestly, I am still unsure with a lot of things: some things that I thought I’d get figured out during my long-term holiday.
All I know is, I got on with life and allowed the universe to guide me even with all the uncertainties. More people came to my life and the flashbacks that I’m having right now is a testimony that every single detail is something to be grateful for. Do you know the book, “The Alchemist”?
A few months before today, I felt it. The desire for rootedness. The desire for stability.
Perhaps, I was in need for a “different kind of constant” this time. A new beginning, a new purpose, a new wave of excitement.
And, guess what? The universe paved a way for me to have this opportunity. I will never know if I’m ready or when I would be ready. But even with all the hesitation of my fickle mind and heart (with respect to taking a vacation from the long-term vacation), a huge part of me says that it is time. The reality is, sometimes you need to stop overthinking and you just have to do it. Let life unfold. Because every single thing will fall into place. You just need to make the first move. (It’s the exact same feeling I had when I first started this journey. Curious? Read more here: Finding My Treasure: Leaving and Living)
Traveling will always be a part of me and while I might have limited time off, I will still make it work to discover and explore the world. I will still share my stories.
I am anxious, nervous, worried, excited, and overwhelmed of this new chapter of my life.
But then again, this universe knows exactly what each of us needs–what I need. Which is why I believe that all these emotions are worth it.
Disclaimer: I am really anxious with the future and I am really curious as to what will happen. But setting that aside, I also just wanted to “officially” declare my “coming back” to the “full-time employee” world/”vacation from the vacation.”
Curious about my adventures? Read more about the Year Round-Up: