is the starting line of one of my fav songs. I love the lyrics of "riptide." it's all about this woman who is NOT the one coming unstuck, and the man falling in love with her. it moves my little heart. most of all I love how she's not the scared one, though--she's doing what she wants. favorite line: "there's this movie that I think you'll like; this guy decides to quit his job and head to New York City." IKR?! anyway, enough on that... but it's related.
I'm in New Zealand. by myself. yeah that's right: it's like I grew up overnight, huh? I've never been on vacation by myself. ever. sure, conferences, yoga retreats, or even trips with people I just met. but... alone? never.
I have friends that vacay by themselves regularly. (lisa--you're the champ here!!) I've always wondered how people did it: how they had enough self-efficacy to do that. (and I also have friends who have drastically failed at the attempt; scary!) but I'm confident; I'm fairly street-smart; I love travelling. but... by myself? I've never even considered it.
until I had this opportunity fall in my lap. and I thought, I'll find someone to go with, and started making plans. well I didn't. let me clarify, I found someone amazing for the second half of the six days. but that still left me exploring a new country on my own for three days. and I thought, yeah, no worries, mate; I got this.
ok. the planning (or lack thereof) was scary. the day of the flight was scary. the taxi to the airport was scary. but once me and all of my liquids made it through security, I was fine. plane? cool. Christchurch earthquake arrival? cool. figuring out what the hell I'm doing the first few days? cool. (after a run and a local yoga class!)
but I'm still pretty amazed.
I still remember the first time I ate at a restaurant alone: June 2006. tamar, liz, sunam and I were studying abroad in germany for the summer. we did weekend trips together but occasionally would explore the cities we went to separately. we were in berlin, and I ate lunch in a cafe. alone. I remember being panicked at telling them "one;" thinking they would judge me.
of course no one did; of course it was fine: I had a lovely bowl of soup while writing in my journal (I didn't have a blog yet!). and I've eaten alone in restaurants at least a hundred times since.
seeing a movie alone for the first time? just after billy left: October 2012. laurel said I just HAD to see "wreck-it ralph," so I went. I felt ridiculous going to a movie aimed at kids as a single adult. but I did it.
and I LOVED it. I probably haven't seen too many more movies alone, but that's just because I don't see movies much.
I think that this super slow evolution of being able to travel alone is indicative of my perception of my self-worth: I probably didn't like myself enough to spend this much time alone in the past.
but it turns out that I'm actually pretty good company.
so. what have I learned thus far? sometimes trusting that everything will work out is a good "plan," I'm always stronger than I expect, I have amazing friends that support me while trying to get out of town (hal, chuck, bal, mish, andrew--that's you), I have super cool friends that will join me for a few days at a moment's notice (SAM!!!!), I can make friends ANYwhere (thanks for the training ground, USAF!), and, um, I kinda like travelling alone.
granted, I'm still in this. but, like I said, I got it. what was I scared of?