Freedom is a beautiful thing
Freedom is a beautiful thing. However, before you roll your eyes and pass on this …. I believe freedom means something different to every one of us. To me, freedom is the choice to travel, live an incredibly simple life; enjoy fine wine, good food and a salad in a hotel room. However! That was not always the case. I am a mother of three, was a step mom of two and at one point handled four (YES 4!) different parenting plans for a total of 5 children. In addition, work, PTA, sports, relationship and just ya’ know - basic life!
Fast forward to now and here I am an empty nester, with a beautiful life partner. We met under circumstances as such - you know the one where neither of us were looking for a relationship - but here we are traveling the US via car for a year together. So here is my story and how I got here and here, before we start this; is my shout out to each and every one of you that are living the life you want on your terms! In the end, that is freedom. Living life on your terms and being present for those that you love and for yourself.
If you are a mom with young kids, freedom for you is very different than it is for me. However, I believe that we are put on this earth for more than work, sleep, rinse and repeat. So now we dive into my story and why I live this life now, and why I feel that this is freedom (for me at least).
A little over a year ago my life looked very different. I was working a full time corporate restaurant job, had a father that was ill and in the hospital (then an in- house physical rehab facility), a son that was very ill and in and out of the hospital in a way that weighed so heavily on me, in addition to juggling very long and trying days with a smile on my face as a restaurant manager, coming home to my partner and trying to manage life in between. I was running on empty and was so overwhelmed, I had no clarity.
Then one day, I was on Facebook. I saw a friend’s live post. She had just completed her first book, packed her car and moved to Laguna Beach and was living a life that she chose to. On her terms. As I watched that video in the kitchen, I literally had a mini meltdown/temper tantrum. I was so upset. Why do we, as a society, decide that we need to work in X job for X amount of time, to retire, travel and live out the rest of our days doing the things we’ve been waiting for, for 40 years? I wanted this life. Now. I didn’t want to wait for 20 or 30 or 40 years.
This spawned a conversation between us. This conversation over several nights and glasses of wine, turned into what is our current life. We chose to quit our jobs, leave our Seattle home where had both been for a very long while, downsized, bought a car and took off for a year of travel across the US. In this journey, we have chosen to blog, write a book and start an accountability group. We will make this work because this is the life we have chosen. The one of travel, getting to know people that we would never meet otherwise, seeing country that we would not have seen otherwise; and so much more.
I am not saying that this is the life you need to choose, I am saying that you need to figure out how to live life on your terms - no matter what those terms are. Give up the judgement. Stop buying into the societal norm. Live your life on your terms. That is freedom.
If freedom means to you that you work a job you love, take your kids to every single soccer practice and have a date night once a week (or a month) with your significant other/spouse then that is OKAY! If freedom to you is traveling the US with minimal belongings, then so be it. Freedom is how you choose to live your life. On your terms. Not how society, or your neighbor, or your parents tell you it needs to be lived.