**DISCLAIMER** This is an article about my experiences, thoughts and feelings when it comes to traveling and leaving places behind. It is not an article about what I’ve been doing lately but it’s something I really had to get out. Don’t complain about my honesty. Thank you.
I’m sure you’ve all probably heard someone say that traveling is addictive. Once you start seeing the world you just can’t get enough, there are so many places to see and between work/school/responsabilities so little time. I totally agree with this and definitely struggle with wanderlust on a daily basis. But here’s the thing not many people tell you, it’s not as easy as it seems.
Everybody keeps telling me how lucky I am to be living in Edinburgh after having lived in Maine and Belgium. How lucky I am to be traveling so much and to have the courage to “follow my dreams” (as I’ve been told multiple times). And I am! Oh gosh how lucky I am! I know that, I do. So maybe I don’t have the right to complain about it because right now I have every single thing that I’ve ever wanted. But this is my blog and I do whatever I want, plus, I wouldn’t really categorise this as complaining, it’s more of a pointing out the facts that sometimes things aren’t as easy as they seem to be.
Let me explain, when I left Belgium a year ago to go to Maine it was extremely difficult to leave my family and friends behind, but at least I knew that I was going to come back and that they were all still going to be there. Then I made a home in Maine, to be honest I tried to not get too attached at the beginning but when you live somewhere for 10 months that’s something you just can’t avoid. So I got attached, really badly. Which made the experience so much better. There were even moments where Maine felt like the only life I had ever known, which was extremely strange. But then I had to leave. I had to leave a home again and this time I wasn’t sure when I was going to come back. One thing I was certain of though, is that it would never be the same. The next time I go to Maine will be as a tourist, the house I lived in and the bed I slept in aren’t mine anymore and they never will be. I will never be able to live that life again.
Then I came back to my first home, oh what a joy to get that life back! But life had moved on there, without me in it. Of course my friends and family welcomed me with open arms and had missed me just as much as I had missed them but their lives had gone on, just like mine had. Except mine had gone on somewhere else that in their world didn’t exist. In the two months I had I tried to get back to that life as well as I could, it felt strange and amazing at the same time, I had missed it so much. Unfortunately two months was all I had, because after that I had to leave again.
Leaving Belgium for the second time was even worse than the first time, because at that point I was also leaving Maine. I was leaving two different lives behind to start a third completely new one, in a completely different city. A blank page once more. “how lucky I am” yes, I know a lot of people would give everything they have for the opportunity to start again in a new place. For me though, it all just happened too fast. Life moves too fast.
This isn’t a sad article, I promise, really it’s everything but sad. Believe me I am the happiest I’ve ever been. It was my choice to go to Maine just like it was my choice to come to Edinburgh. Both of these decisions were ones that I had planned and looked forward to from a very young age, but at that time I didn’t know that traveling wasn’t all rainbows and butterflies. It’s leaving a life behind, it’s constantly missing people and places, it’s not knowing where you belong anymore because pieces of your heart have been scattered all around the world. It’s beautiful, but it’s tough.
I wouldn’t change it for the world, I don’t regret a single thing, but I do hope that one day I’ll be able to settle down.