Wow. 10 months. Can’t even believe it’s been that long already.
I remember this time last year, I was still working and living my corporate/salary lifestyle, but secretly preparing to leave it behind for my backpack and a budget. I remember thinking I ‘knew’ what type of challenges I would face ahead, but I didn’t really know shit!
These past 10 months of my life, have been the most amazing and epic months of my life thus far.
I’ve sat back these past few days, while being here in Sydney Australia, and reflected on where I stand today and how far I’ve come. The challenges, loneliness, adventure, laughter, tears, and happiness I’ve felt.
(As I am headed home (NYC) for Christmas in just a few hours.)
I went back and read one of the very first post I published here: Why I Left Home And My Comfort Zone. I smiled while rereading it, because I really had no idea what was to come.
Does anyone ever do that? Go back and actually reflect on where you stand today to where you stood back then?
Since then I’ve: (and after writing that post)
- Launched my Travel Blog
- Paraglided off the Swiss Alps for my 26th Birthday
- I walked 220 miles across Spain on El Camino de Santiago
- I’ve challenged my mental and physical limits
- I’ve doubted myself 100000000 times
- Received an offer to work in Portugal for the Summer
- Got my certification to teach English in another country and taught in Spain
- Came to terms with the fact that I didn’t want to do things the way I was ‘suppose to’ do them. I was going to do it my way.
- Spent the summer working my ASS OFF.
- Traveled to SE Asia Solo for 2 months
- Learned to ride a motorbike in Chiang Mai (and almost died)
- Spent a day with Elephants
- Got lost in Bangkok and relied on a stranger to help me find my way (who didn’t speak english)
- Ate street food from: Thailand, Cambodia, and Indonesia
- Made friends with complete strangers (and learned to trust them)
- Stayed in more hostels than I wanted to!
- Learned the true meeting of the universal language: a smile
- Watched Sunrises in Thailand, Cambodia and Indonesia
- Packed a 75L backpack with clothes/ water filters (to distribute to villages I travel to in countries that needed clean water)
- Slept on an over night train traveling to the north of Thailand w/ no air-con and 30 people in a room.
- Learned that I am really patient
- Made a difference in someones day
- Learned that I am not a diva
- Learned the REAL value of a dollar
- Met my 20-year-old self.
- I surfed all over Bali and caught my first BIG wave (6 footer)- got my scares to prove it!
- Been robbed
- Learned to be more discipline
- How valuable WIFI is and how shitty it is that we take it for granted!
- I’ve kept my word
- Had a melt down/ culture shock
- Made friends I can call family in a new country- I had never been to
- Got my dream job
- WENT SWIMMING WITH SHARKS!!!
- Found a flat I can call ‘home’.
- I’ve learned to pay it forward more often than not.
I could probably keep going, but that will do for now. I find it so hard to say what I am about to say. Mostly, because I am not a bragger and I appreciate it ALL! Every let down and challenge I’ve faced, but I want to say: I am proud of myself.
I’d be lying if I said this was easy. It wasn’t. In fact, I’ve had many nights where I’ve questioned my every move. To realize one thing and one thing only. I am happy! I’ve done what I said I was going to do and here I am.
I can’t tell you that 2016 will be this epic year, because I really have no clue whats going to happen, where I will be traveling to,etc. I can say that 2015 has been a good year and I am grateful.
I challenge anyone who reads this post to question where they stand today.
Are you happy? Are you proud of yourself? Do you remember where you stood a year ago today and has anything changed?
There is no greater feeling then knowing you’ve done what you’ve wanted/love to do and you might have made a difference in someone else life.
Why is it that most of us (not all of us) live our lives rushing through it. Whats the damn point of rushing! Eventually we all get to the end, we just get there differently. Slow down! Enjoy it. Promise it’s all worth it.
When I set out to Europe 10 months ago, I honestly didn’t think I would move to Australia by December of this year. I thought about it, but I didn’t think I would actually do it. Here I am.
The post I posted months ago (Why I Left Home and My Comfort Zone) has nothing on what I’ve done thus far. I’ve completely ran from my comfort zone! I did say one thing at the end of the post that has still stuck with me:
“And as a good friend of mine said before I left, “Jen, I admire the fact that you aren’t willing to take the ‘what if’ to the grave.” “
And that my friends, is what I’ve done thus far.