Saturday, April 2, 2011

Thailand 2011 - Leaving Home

I am a careful and calculated person. Yes, I am adventurous. I take risks. But when I do, I have a vague idea of what I'm getting into and prepare as such. I'm usually packed a week prior to a trip, and everything has a place to go. For some reason, though, this time was different...

I had dedicated most of my week to packing and preparing my room for storage, yet somehow all of that fell on my shoulders last night. I always found a reason to see my family and play with my niece and nephew, or escaped to see my little brother's baseball game and even an emergency paperwork trip to Phoenix and a night with friends. Procrastinating is in my soul, but this was not the week to do something like this.

A couple days ago, I learned that I would not be coming back home after Thailand. I would have a turn-around journey to San Francisco to get my visa, then I would be off for a year in Korea. I had to pack for a year...I had to say my goodbyes, just in case.

Yet last night, after spending time with my family, I found myself at the bar spending one last night with friends. We ended up in a hot tub at the Best Western with some random friends from the bar talking about our youthful angst and what life had in store for all of us. Maybe it was the extreme exhaustion and the 3am hitting me, but I was pulling something from this one wonderful night that might set the tone for things to come.

As we were talking, I re-confirmed how similar we all are, and how we all grow up whether we're ready for it or not. If you remotely know me, you know how much I hate staying put. I love my family and they mean everything to me, but being in Kingman for so long without a job or direction was getting to me.

Purpose shifted for me, and I learned the value of humanity. We're all striving to connect with one another. All the things we do in life don't mean a damn thing if we don't have someone to share it all with. Conversations are easy and making friends is natural, and it was a trait that I learned from traveling abroad. Genuinely enjoying someone's company without any motive whatsoever is and should be easy, yet we complicate things. We have a mission that we want to accomplish, and that track has limited seating. We're quick to not let people into our lives, and even quicker to cut them out when the relationship gets tough. Luckily, nature prevails over social normality every time, and overcoming this hesitancy is as easy as changing your state of mind.

What I wasn't ready for was growing up and all that it entailed. I had to say goodbye to all the people I love for a year. I had to pack my earthly belongings into one suit case, accounting for every obstacle that I might face. That's why I was out in a Best Western hot tub at 3am when I had to fly out at 6: I knew that I was growing up, and that I had to say goodbye.

I do have one incentive, however. The people that are meant to be in your life will find a way to stay in your life. Whether it be a conscious decision from you or fate, a true friendship stands the test of time. Those that don't shouldn't be mourned...they should be recognized for what they were and exist as a happy memory. Some of these people in this hot tub I will never see again, yet I should cherish the time spent with them. The others are friendships that are meaningful and strong, and I know we'll find a way to keep our friendship alive.

I wasn't afraid anymore, and I left Kingman this morning ready for my biggest adventure yet. When you keep raising the stakes, it becomes harder and harder to take that first step out your front door. When you finally do, however, you're instantly stronger because of it and ready to live your life. I'm fortunate to be young enough to do these kind of adventures, and I vow to never waste another minute hesitating because of complacency or fear.

Thanks for coming along with me, because I do need you in my corner. After all, what good are pictures when you don't have someone to show them to? I hope you enjoy the content that's soon to come, and know that I love each and every one of you. Let's go create some stories together, shall we?

1 comment:

  1. Ryan, I totally agree. Those friends that are not in our lives anymore don't need to be mourned, but need to be celebrated for what they were. The same goes for intimate relationships. And the people that are meant to be in our lives will find their way back in. Good words, my friend.