I’m selling all my things to travel the world…
As of now, I currently reside in Reno, NV with my mom, dad and three brothers. I have no boyfriend, no animals, I no longer have my own home and I just got rid of my car… hello bicycle life. I have gone through my closet, kitchen supplies, books, anything extra…you name it, and have started the process of selling everything online. In 8 months I leave for Hanoi, Vietnam to teach English as a foreign language.
I’m selling or giving away everything I own that won’t fit in a 35L backpack, so my plans on coming back to the United States do not currently exist. So, what made me decide to do this? I have never been much of a traditional school person, and when I stopped forcing myself to take this route, things magically fell into place. I think it’s so important to listen to your intuition and to always follow your heart – my intuition and heart say this is the right thing to do. Over the last year and a half, I have watched people my age, friends and family spend all their money and time in school only to come out with the same job they had while in school, no job at all, or even worse – a job they hate. I always viewed going to school as “Okay, once I get this degree my life will fall into place.” From what I have witnessed first hand, this is a common misconception embedded into a lot of young peoples minds. (I would like to note this is my personal experience and relates to my personality. My brother John, for example, is absolutely brilliant and is graduating with a Bachelors in Physics and Chemistry and a double minor in Math and CS. Obviously, he is a traditional school person and his degree will take him very, very far in life. Me on the other hand, I barely remember what long division is from fourth grade.)
“I was once with someone for four years, and he told me one day “Sara, you have to go to school for something you’re not passionate about so you can earn money, and your passion can be your hobby.”
I am no longer in that relationship. This is actually the same person who graduated with a great degree and came out hating his job. This is also the same person who wouldn’t marry me because I did not have a ‘proper college education.’ All while we were together, I had a job I loved as a personal trainer, and I made the same amount of money as him. The truth is, it has become the norm that right when you turn 18 you’re supposed to go to a University, know what you want to do, and pay a bunch of money to earn said degree. Half the classes you take don’t even relate to that degree. If you don’t do this, society see’s you in a different (not so positive) light. I know because I have been (and still am) in that light.
The pressure to follow this norm is real, especially when you are the first born daughter, niece, grandchild and the oldest of four siblings. I have been going to traditional college since I was 18, I am now 25. I have countless college credits and only an Associates Degree to show for all my years of hard work. I could never figure out what I wanted to do, and the things I did want to do, I couldn’t pass (chemistry for nutrition, math for kinesiology, etc..) When I was attending school, I was stressed out, unhappy and unsure of every decision I was making. I put everything else I loved and wanted to do on the back burner. After my break up from my 4 year relationship, I literally mid semester, dropped out of school. I started listening to what I wanted and set out to find my purpose. It was not pretty at all. I have done many things that have not worked out…but I have taken all of these experiences as life lessons and have learned a great deal from all of my mistakes. I don’t regret anything. I am absolutely determined to turn my life into a working passion. I want to teach people about health and fitness and I want to see the world while doing it. I believe that taking the step to teaching English will get me to where I want to be, and I couldn’t be more excited! (I’ve always wanted to be a teacher anyways, I think I’m pretty influential.)
One day, I was browsing my feed on instagram and I asked a random person (who was my age, no degree) how the
fuck they were traveling to all these countries without going broke. I didn’t get an answer (ha). Coincidentally at the same time, I was denied entry into the University here at home and having reached maximum credits at my Community College, I couldn’t even go back to school (easily) if I wanted to. Instead of complaining or reacting negatively, I did my research and figured this shit out. If there was one thing I knew, it was that I didn’t want a vacation, I wanted to live the life of a nomad permanently.
It turns out that everyone around the world wants to learn English. Lucky for me, I speak fluent English. Also, lucky for me, my Aunt is an ESL professor at the University here in Reno, NV, so I have the opportunity to audit and substitute her ESL classes 6 hours a week. I have applied for my substitute teaching license and will begin racking up hours this semester. I am taking a 4 week course through TEFL and will be certified to teach in over 40 countries. I leave early October all by myself and ecstatic is an understatement. I don’t think there is a word that can describe how overjoyed I am.
I have been watching people my age get married, have kids, own homes, buy new cars and settle down. I actually had this life not to long ago (minus the kids and marriage, but pretty damn close), and deep down I was not happy, but I was too afraid to admit it. During my relationship, as unhappy as I was, I was afraid to leave my comfort zone and face the unknown – cliche, I know, but it’s so true. I mean after all, I had dumped so much of my time and energy into this life, I couldn’t just walk away, right? Long story short – we both fell out of love, and one thing this guy did do right by me, was he had the guts to admit it when I didn’t. After dragged out months of heartbreak,we finally left each other. This was the best, yet most painful thing, that has ever happened to me.
Although all of my friends are extremely admirable leading a settled down life, and I am thrilled for them, this is not what I want. Not one tiny bit. I don’t dream about it, I don’t think ‘what if’ and I have no emotions of jealously or desire to pursue a lifestyle of marriage or what we now call the ‘norm.’ I do not want material things to fill up a home, I want just enough things to fill up a backpack. I intend to fill my mind with experiences that nobody will ever be able to take away from me. I want to wake up in Bali one morning and then 6 months later go to sleep in Nicaragua, or maybe Thailand, Costa Rica, New Zealand…. I want to teach children and adults not only English, but the importance of healthy eating and how to live an active lifestyle. I plan to use my teaching skills along with my health expertise, personal training knowledge and years of experience to enlighten and inspire everyone I meet.
Follow my journey, as I plan to post as much as I can as I prepare for my adventure. There will be lots of fitness, (vegan) food and travels!