It's hard to believe that it officially has been years--not just a year--since we finished up Bowman Odyssey and came off the road. Saying it was a life changing event is like saying, "Did you know we put people on the moon?" Duh. We sold everything we owned, bought a camper, traveled around the US with a one year old. It was epic. It's also still something I think about daily. That's not a joke. I really do think about it almost every day. I think about some of our favorite places, or our amazing tribe of people that we now have all over the US. But I also think about the ways it has changed us. We are not the same people that left on that trip two years ago. So here are a few lessons that we learned and ways that we are forever changed.
1. We are no longer people who ask if we can do something but how we can do it | Once you've sold everything. Once you've done that, made a huge life change, hit the road and survived it, you have power. You have the power of comparison where smaller feats now seem like not a big deal. You have the power of knowing that you really can make just about anything work. That was a huge gift for us.
2. You can opt out of the Rat Race at any time | Change is a scary thing. I still get freaked out that things are constantly changing around us. Sometimes I yearn for stability. But the truth is we are all always changing. Life is different every day. Our needs and wants are different. The trip showed me that we have the ability at anytime to say "this is not working for us and we are changing it up." I know this will happen time and time again in our lives and while I feel like puking a little bit when I say that, I also know that it's good. It means that we are always curious, questioning, investigating, and therefore--growing.
3. You choose your life | It sounds easy and trendy to say this but believe me I know that choosing your life is not always an easy choice. Say that five times fast! Choosing a different path, whatever that looks like for you is hard. That choice may come with a lot of giving on your part, it may require patience, persistence, a hell of a lot of hard work, loss, or even asking for help. What it has always boiled down to me for me is will I regret not knowing what will happen? I know where we are now but what if I never know what this choice could bring?
Big risks or even just big changes often reap big rewards. What you often don't know going into it though is when those rewards come and in what shape. I feel like we are still on our odyssey. We are still searching for meaning, our next path, and seem to find ourselves somewhere in the middle. As Rachel Brathen says, "Trust that life will take you where you need to be." For now, that's what I'm working with. New odysseys, new paths, new opportunities WILL come and all we can do is trust, leap, and learn.