Antsy. That’s how I often feel.
Most people from my many former lives tell me that I am running from something. My mom thinks I’m insatiable. My grandfather thinks I’m crazy. People whom I meet along the way think I’m adventurous. I just think that I’m antsy.
I have lived in a lot of places, not quite army-brat style, but nowhere near trapped-in-a-small-town-bubble style, either. Since graduating high school, I have bounced around and tried out different scenes while somehow managing to make a living in the same profession in all of them. I’m a teacher. Well, at least, I’m currently a teacher and have been since graduating college. Will I be a teacher forever? I don’t know. Sometimes I think yes. Most of the time I think no. But, in reality, I have no clue.
Does no one else constantly wonder what it would be like to ____________? Every time that I hear of a new idea, learn of a new place, or find out about a new job, I always begin fantasizing about what it would be like to be there or to do that. Most of the time, I quickly come back to reality, but other times I am sincerely intrigued. While most people my age are trying to find their career niche and their life partner, I am placing bets against myself on how long I am going to stay in one place before getting the itch again and taking off. I have lived in small towns, major cities, and other countries. I have traveled to centuries-old monuments, traipsed through millenia-old natural phenomena, floated across the Strait of Gibraltar, and hiked through the jungles of Perú. I speak two languages. I play guitar. I sing in the shower like it’s center stage at the Met. But, all that I can think of is how I want more.
I only wish that I could explain my antsy nature. People often ask what motivates me to hop around the globe as often as I do, and I have never really concocted a legitimate answer for them. At times, I feel as though I am truly seeking adventure. Other times, I wonder if I actually am running from something. Perhaps I will never know. Perhaps it is ok not to know.
My mother worries that I will never settle down. She is convinced that she will not get to see me get married and start a family, but is that such a bad thing? Is it so wrong to live your life, even if that means living it without someone by your side every step of the way? Society says that we should get married, sure. But, society also says that men should get paid more than women, white is better than black, and athletes are worth more than teachers. Should we blindly follow those sentiments, too? Of course, marriage is an option, but it’s not a necessity. Happiness isn’t only obtained through the exchanging of vows or the committing of yourself to another person for the rest of your life. Don’t get me wrong. I would like to have someone to share my experiences with, but I don’t see that as a necessary component of my adventures. Throughout my travels and different places of living, I have always found people to share my life with. Grant it, those people have been different in each place that I have been, but I am ok with that.
The world is so big and there is so much to see and do. I’m not sure that I will ever be able to settle down and anchor myself to one place. Most people think that they have found success when they have secured themselves a routine job in one place, living in an establishment with their significant other. Most people crave routine, whether consciously or not. Most people like to travel but don’t like to travel as a way of life. Most people wonder “what if” but rarely get to say “glad I did that.” I guess I’m not most people.
Sometimes I wonder if I will ever actually have a career. I’m sure that I will eventually end up living in one place for an extended period of time, but I highly doubt that I will do the same thing the whole time that I am there. I have too much wanderlust, too much “what if” in me to do the same thing for 10, 15, 20 years. I get too curious. I respect those that dedicate themselves to something and stick with it for decades, but I just can’t. At least, I don’t think I can.
When it comes down to it, I just think that I was born a shark in a human body. If I stop swimming, I die.
More to come.