Sometime last year, I seriously contemplated the idea of selling all of my possessions (except for my books, of course), and truly embracing the nomad life.
The wanderlust was strong, and I was feeling antsy.
My life was going to be an adventure, with Seattle being my home base.
When I had to put Dot down last year, I wasn’t going to get another cat. I wouldn’t take on the responsibility of another pet.
I was going to be spontaneous – ready to get away at a moment’s notice.
There would be no need for me to settle down. I didn’t want to put down roots, even as I was finally building solid friendships with people I could actually trust to stay in my life.
Then heartbreak happened.
I felt like a failure as a friend. As a woman. As a partner. As a business owner.
Over and over again.
So, I kept driving. I embraced the road. All I needed was Roxanne, the clothes on my back, my laptop, my camera, and McLovin. Nobody else.
I didn’t want to settle.
I fell in love with a cat who needed a human to be patient with her.
I convinced my brother to move to Seattle.
I started forming traditions with my friends.
I moved into the apartment I’d been coveting for years, an apartment that was my safe place, a place I could truly call home.
Then I finally came to terms with the truth:
All I’ve ever wanted in life was to have a place to call my own, to put down roots in a fleeting world. The reason I’d been so afraid to put down roots is because I feared they’d be ripped out. I was afraid of getting hurt. I was afraid of letting myself settle down only to lose everything again.
So I decided to go all in.
Travel in 2016 has been minimal.
I’m putting down roots in my community with a meetup. I’m coming to terms with the changes happening in my friends’ lives (babies, marriage, and the such), even if the idea of losing them terrifies me.
I’m going all in with a new relationship. (Is 6 months still new? Ish?)
There’s a stigma with being settled. It can feel like giving up on your dreams. It’s easy to get lost in the “what ifs” and start feeling like you’re not doing enough with your life.
But you know what?
My wanderlust is still strong & I’m still going to travel. I’m killing it in my career. I’m making memories with my boyfriend, my brother & his girlfriend, and my friends on a weekly basis around this place I’ve chosen to call home.
Yes, feeling settled and putting down roots is scary. The constant fear of missing out is real, but I’m no longer feeling the FOMO.
Will there be times I feel restless? Yes.
Will I want to get away? Yes.
Will I have the option to do so? 100% yes.
My priorities have shifted. I like the idea of having a home to call my own. There is no feeling of insecurity.
The fiercely independent life I’ve built gives me permission to slow down & embrace change.
The adventures will continue.
The world is still my siren, but now, I choose when to answer its call versus aimlessly running away from home.