In Agony, Aching, NOT FREE

Frankly,  I’ve been thinking about this pain for some time now.  Ever since I read Candice’s posts about Wanderlust as a Physical Pain over at Candice Does the World I thought, how nice to know that i am not alone.

Still for me, it’s physically painful and mentally agonizing  to read amazing stories like Sallie Latch, a 77 year-old woman who has been traveling since the age of 18.  Or someone like Jodi of  @Legalnomads who decided to leave it all and travel the world for 2 years.  Doesn’t look like she is stopping anytime soon. I didn’t just read about it, I’ve met Jodi and quite frankly I’m so envious I can feel physical pain.   Or families like @familyonbikes @thefutureisred @CCBurns.  There are many, many countless others.  As the list lengthens, my heart aches even more so to be in Thailand with my little family.

Why is it painful and agonizing? Not because they are living that great lifestyle.  Oh how I envy them, but happy for them that they have made their dreams come true by living it.  It is painful and agonizing for me, and getting worse, because I’m just READING about them and NOT living my life the way that would truly make us happy.

Unless one has an aching thirst for travel (or to live abroad) the way I do, it would be quite impossible to comprehend and empathize.  I know this because I have seen it in their eyes and heard it in their voice.

What’s worse?  The pessimism!     Pessimism of which we have heard (even when not spoken):  “you’re getting up there in age”  “it’s harder when you have a child”  “who is going to hire you?” “what about retirement and benefits?”   For once in life,  just for freakin ONCE,  is it possible to give us shades of optimism?

Well guess what?  We know all this?   This is no easy battle and we freakin know it.  Yes, we truly, honestly do!

Here is another painful truth- if we continue to live a life we  have now and NOT make a move because of these fears,  then personally,  I prefer not to live at all.

Does it sound selfish?  Maybe.  Isn’t it about time?  If not now, then when,  when do we get to live a life that makes us truly happy as a family?

Coming to Chiang Mai on my own, being here, eating the food, laughing, sharing and spending time with the locals just reaffirm our commitment to be free of the trappings of an American life surrounded by meaningless “THINGS.” It reaffirms our commitment to be closer to the roots and values we grew up with  allowing us to offer our daughter a similar environment.

I  have crocodile tears streaming down my face while writing this post.

My friends here at the Burmese restaurant probably think the tears are from missing my family.  Well,  it’s true in part.  I wish I didn’t have to wait a few more months until our move is a reality.  I can taste the freedom.  I can taste it.  But It seems like forever!  It has been forever for me, in my book.

Until then I am aching.  I am in agony.  I AM NOT FREE.

  0 comments for “In Agony, Aching, NOT FREE

  1. March 5, 2010 at 11:10

    Feel for you. Having lived overseas half of my life, at this point it is hard to say where “home” is anymore… This used to disturb me, imagining that there was something odd or unusual, but I have come to terms with it and consider that for more and more and more people like you and me, and your family this detached, vagabonding life is becoming more and more usual every day so we are in increasingly good company.

    Another comfort was the book by Pico Iyer, “The Global Soul” which I heartily recommend. (PIco was born in England of Indian parents, moved to California young, and now like me living in Japan – not that I know him personally….he’s too famous and I’m too much of a hermit). Check it out. Have you found the 2nd hand bookshops near Tapae Gate? They might have it.

    BTW how is the house hunting going? Hope you found a nice one, will definitely put CM on my next Thai itinerary (I come there twice a year though usually BKK…).

    Hugs, John @asiaimages from San Francisco/Japan/France

  2. March 5, 2010 at 13:52

    Hang in there. I think you are doing what it takes to head into the direction that will make you and your family happy. It’s easier for other people to criticize your decision because that’s human nature. Heck! sometimes, I even criticize my own decision.

    I don’t know if we will be able to make it to Chiang Mai this trip (I sure hope so) Hopefully, we can meet in Thailand this Summer. 🙂

  3. March 6, 2010 at 18:27

    Thanks for the shout-out!

    Man, I feel you on this so much. I often feel like I’m making excuses, but I’m ploughing through my debt and I’m not the type of person to ditch responsibility.

    But like the above comment, I think you’re off to a good start. Just realizing things need to change is the beginning, in my opinion. The next is action.

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