Backpacking and The First Sign of Danger

Three months before my solo backpacking trip to Asia, I felt no anxiety. Three weeks before, none. Three days before, I was in a state of shock.

I don’t have enough money. I don’t have enough knowledge. I don’t have enough guarantees.

Why does the mind work in such a way?

Our brains are wired to seek the familiar, for survival purposes. In modern times, this hinders us. We stick with the familiar even when it’s no longer fulfilling or safe. When an abused child is taken from the home, they beg to stay. The promise of a loving family isn’t enough. They want what they know. Anything else seems too risky. Sadly, we aren’t much different. (It’s the same brain.) Ask us to leave a miserable anything and we have an excuse at the ready. I had my excuses.

Nico will forget me. The plane will crash. I will have to dance for money.

It takes courage to break out of a situation that no longer serves you. But, indulge my Oprah moment, you deserve to be happy. When you stay in a place that doesn’t feed your soul, you slip away. It’s subtle. Easy to miss. I was afraid to leave but couldn’t admit it. I thought, “what would I say to a friend in my situation?”. I’d say: “Gurl, you better get on that stinkin’ plane.  Get your Asia on. Go eat some real phad thai. But don’t get pregnant! Have a blast. You won’t regret it!”

So that’s what I told myself.


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