“Do I need to remind you of the finite nature of life? It’s like the song says, enjoy yourself, it’s later than you think.”
Life is so fleeting; memories come and go every second. Moments with the people we love, in the places that take our breath away, and the emotions we crave. Each day has its beginning and its end. We can’t predict the future, we can’t change the outcome. All we can do is go through every day with an open mind and aim to be as grateful as we can be for each of life’s little gifts. We have to strive to find our purpose and the passions that allow us to embrace the most humbling, precious moments without taking anything for granted.
This year has already been a huge source of growth for me. I just finished my first year of college, and I wish I could have slowed it down. The amount of joy I found in my school, its people and my studies was unlike anything I could have ever imagined. Through the late nights and early mornings, I noticed how often I thought about how much I would miss a moment while I was still living it. Like the laughter of my best friends echoing through the room. The car rides and the jam sessions. The peaceful walks on days when the weather was finally nice enough to enjoy it. The hugs and cuddles and food runs. The conversations and the photos and the videos. The company.
As I drove away from Kearney for the summer, I realized just how quickly this year went by, and how thankful I am for each and every moment that passed. I gained a larger sense of who I am, who I want to be, and who can help me get there. I found a significance in my passions and how to enact them into my life.
One of the passions that makes me feel most alive is exploring places I’ve never been before. Everything is so raw and undiscovered. Standing somewhere where no one knows your name or your story evokes an unquenchable curiosity. I constantly long to be wandering down unfamiliar streets, trying local cuisines and finding hidden places that no travel book can offer. After months of research and daydreaming about planes and hostels, I am so excited to be taking off on another backpacking trip, down the roads less traveled. I will be taking six weeks this summer to trek into 12 new countries – through Scandinavia and Eastern Europe, from Norway down to Greece.
It’s never easy heading out on a long-term trip. Leaving behind all that I am accustomed to and pushing my life into a backpack is intense and eye-opening. It makes you think more about the little things in life and how much they mean to you. My mind always goes back to the comforting thoughts of the people I love and the place I come from. Some days are longer and lonelier than others, when the weight of changes gets heavy and a homely feeling is all I want. But I know that with every step is another memory, another moment that I can’t take for granted.
These miles leave an endless tattoo on my heart and my mind. I am incredibly grateful for the opportunities that I have to channel my passions into reality. Here’s to embracing the finite nature of life and wandering off again. Thank you for staying connected and updated on my travels!