Why I Decided to Quit My Job to Travel the World

Still round the corner, there may wait, a new road or a secret gate.
— J.R.R. Tolkien

"How could I pass up the opportunity..."

Have you ever felt the need to just stop what you are doing to do something else? I have had this nagging wanderlust inside me for years. I have always been in love with travel and I seriously believe this wanderlust grew out of a train ride to Canada when I was about 10 years old. My dad took my sister Jennifer and myself to Toronto, because he had business meetings to attend. We rode on a train into Toronto and it was such a great time. I was so fascinated by the trip and seeing something new. My dad took us to the planetarium which was the highlight of  the trip for me. I was a total space nerd! 

There were also a couple of trips to Disney World in Orlando Florida where we stayed in Ft. Meyers and went to Sanibel Island. My mom once took us to Arcola, Illinois to an Amish community that had an amazing park. The park contained all kinds of interesting gardens, windmills, and other interesting sites. There was even a small little house made out of 7up returnable glass bottles!  

My mom also made several trips out to Wyoming when I was in elementary school. She would bring back souvenirs that would peak my interest. She brought back a book about Wyoming that I distinctly recall had a picture of Devil's Tower on the front of it. I wanted so bad to see such places because it was so different from the corn fields of Indiana. It is definitely no coincidence that I moved to Wyoming (where I have been living for 24 years). 

All of those trips and vacations affected me, but none of them influenced the wanderlust like that trip to Toronto. The ride on the train was mind-blowing for me as a kid. I was completely enthralled with the ride. I loved how the scenery passed by out outside. The scenery constantly changed which and I couldn't pull myself away from the window during the trip. 

Did I mention that I absolutely loved the planetarium in Toronto? (Yes, I still geek out on stars and the night sky!)

That longing to travel I acquired at the age of 10 has never left me. I have always loved to travel. To see new places and experience places outside of my normal realm of life. In fact, my wanderlust has increased ever year with every single trip I took. 

A few years ago, my dad died from a heart attack at the age of 63. I made the decision at that moment that I didn't want to follow along the same path. I decided to live my life, improve my health, and my mental well-being. I decided in January 2017, after reading an article about travel (you can read the article here), and watching a series by The Budgeteers called How to Travel Central America for $1000 (the first episode I viewed was Episode 4).  These both screamed at me...slapping me in the face really. I was awakened to my burning wanderlust. I knew taking a long trip would fulfill my decisions to live my life, improve my health, and most especially my mental well-being. I wanted to do this.  I knew I needed to do this above anything else.

I mean, how could I pass up the opportunity to find myself? To find the best me?

I couldn't.

I realized this was the most important decision of my life. I couldn't pass up my dream or possibly the last chance for me to travel the world.

I thought to myself, "What if I don't live long enough to do it later?"

So, I set a date to take this trip. I realized that this trip would need to be much longer than a vacation which meant that I would need to leave my job. I researched what it would take to get me where I wanted to be and began taking steps to get there. I set a date for my journey, set a timeline for it all to happen, bought a ticket, got immunized, got married, and I chose a final date for work.

My final date for work has now passed. I am putting the final touches on my arrangements and spending time with my friends and family before I depart.

There are 44 days until my journey begins...but, in a way, the journey has already begun.