We are the People Our Parents Warned us About

It is official. I have ended a nearly two-decade employment and am beginning an entirely new reality. This reality feels a bit surreal for me. This time feels different. It feels permanent.

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When we sold our house and quit our jobs and ran off to travel the world in 2007 we left so much behind; a storage unit full of a house worth of “stuff”, a truck, a car, a boat, a horse & goat. Obviously, we were coming back at one point if for no other reason than to deal with it all. It is now apparent that what happened is we came back into the middle of a terrible recession and moved nearly back into our old life. Not because we wanted to, but with limited job options and growing debt, because it was what seemed like the most reasonable option at the time.

This is different. We are divesting ourselves of nearly every single material possession. We are leaving only a couple of storage bins behind. And we are struggling, not with OUR choices, but with many of those around us. Many of the people who we feel should be the most excited and supportive are proving to be the most negative and challenging. While the denial is also strong, the open irritation and negativity is surprising and incredibly sad.

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We realize the life we are seeking is outside of the norm considered acceptable by society. We realize we are, as Jimmy Buffet puts it “the people our parents warned us about”. We realize there are guarantees the life we seek will pay off long term.

But we also realize that nothing in life is guaranteed, literally not even life itself, except in this exact moment. We absolutely refuse to be “someday” people, those souls who continue to go through the mediocrity of their day to day life, always waiting for some grand event down the road that will release them from their tedium so they can REALLY start living. This has been our dream for a long time. This is OUR time and we refuse to apologize to the naysayers for following that dream.

Several of my co-workers that are close friends went out with us last week. We were heartened to read their cards filled with encouragement and love. We were thrilled to have so many of those around us encouraging us to leap off this cliff and follow our dreams, many jealous they didn’t have the courage (yet!) to do so themselves.

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In the recent weeks our facebook pages have been blowing up with friends near and far excited beyond words for us, anxious to follow along on our journey and live vicariously through us. We have clung to their words, needing their love and support during what is proving to be a challenging time.

In two days Jim will be done with work. In five days we will be moving out of our rental. In ten days we will be HITTING THE ROAD to follow our dreams, fully exposing our hearts and souls to the world. Thank you, THANK YOU, to all of those in our life who have pulled for us, encouraged us, supported us wholeheartedly. We couldn’t do this without you and can’t wait to have you along for the ride!

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18 thoughts on “We are the People Our Parents Warned us About

  1. We did the same thing. We sold our house, our boat and our vehicles to move to a home we bought on the beach in Chelem, Mexico. People (our friends) don’t believe we are willing to give up the American life to move to a home in Mexico. We are not giving up the American life……we are sharing it with our new friends. We can live very economically here and enjoy a wonderful life. Just do it. It is your dream…..not anybodys else.

    • Good for you guys! I think we Americans often get stuck in feeling like to be proud Americans we have to ONLY love America. It’s a big old world out there, filled with many wonderful people and places.

  2. Good for you! Only last year, when we retired, did we do the outrageous thing and spend two glorious months in Mexico, not at a resort but in a “bungalow”! Except for a few adventurous souls, most people back home (including our adult children) told us we were nuts. Well, guess what? We’re back this winter for FOUR months and it is wonderful! We did a major downsizing, have rented out our place in Canada while we’re away and are loving it down here. We’re meeting some lovely (also crazy) people and I’ve never been happier. Looking forward to reading more from you!

    • Good for you! Life doesn’t have to be lived the way “normal” society dictates. All over the world people have different ideas of what works and what doesn’t and still seem to make it happen. Glad to have you following along.

  3. I think naysayers speak from the insecurity of their own convictions. And, if they love you, they speak from fear of the unknown. Give them the space to feel what they feel while holding your dreams in your heart.

    The best thing any of us can do is to try and good for you for putting yourselves out there.

    Countdown! WooHoo! 🙂

    • Very wise words Patti. In the end, although not necessarily ideal, we did “make nice” with everyone, including my father whom we’ve seen about 4 times in 8 years, and headed out on the road of life with clear thoughts and open hearts.

  4. 10 Days!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (I would have applied more exclamation marks here, but I’m not sure there’s enough space in the comments field for the required number.)

    • lol.. silly girl but yep… I’m so far behind we’re now on the road for 3 days! Driving slower than planned (lol.. something YOU know all about) but thrilled to be living the dream.

  5. A brave thing you are doing…..but absolutely right.

    Good luck and safe roads my friends

    • Thank you, thank you! We’re now on day 3 and can’t wait to fully acclimate into our new road life.

  6. I agree with Patti but I do understand how frustrating those naysayers can be! This is a thrilling but scary time for you, and the last thing you want right now is negativity. So let me be the hundred-billionth person to counter it and say that we’re so excited for you and we can’t wait to live vicariously through you!

    Oddly, we didn’t face naysayers when we sold all our stuff to travel indefinitely but now that we’re embarking on a new career path (one with limited profit for the foreseeable future, and definitely no 401K plan!) we’re getting lots of criticism. We realize it’s coming up out of fear of the unknown and/or concern for our futures, but it’s tiresome to hear.

    Try cranking Frank Turner’s “Photosynthesis” next time you get down about the naysayers – works for us every time. 🙂

    • Thanks so much Jen! Well, let me say that WE are beyond thrilled to have you guys following your heart on new career paths! So many people who are “doing it right” and following the safe plan still have no 401K and live paycheck to paycheck so, really, what is the difference and at least you’ll be living your own version of your dream. Hope you’re keeping warm 🙂 in Canada as we head for warmer climates. If you need a warm beach in your future would love to have you come and visit!

  7. I still remember the excitement and jitters from the takeoff. It’s going to be strange when you discover a new normal surrounded by people on the road who dream similar dreams and some much crazier! Those who sound negative now are speaking from the only truth they know.

    • Thanks Karie…. having taken off before for 14months, we are a bit surprised by it all, actually. I think, since we sold literally EVERYTHING this time it just feels more permanent and long term to us, and those around us. But, now on just day 3 we have already gotten our road legs, had our first mechanical issue, and are feeling more true to ourselves. A perfect sign that this is right.

  8. There will always be people who don’t understand this lifestyle choice; hopefully they’ll change their tune when they see how happy your new life makes you. If they don’t, well, it’s your life and you have to live it the best way you can. Try not to let it upset you and enjoy this new journey for all it’s worth!

    • Thanks Amy! Now on day THREE of our never ending (?) road trip, we are already feeling more true to ourselves, a sure sign we are making the right choice. I hope our paths cross one day somewhere in this big old world.

  9. Consider yourself BLESSED with the freedom that most of the world actually seeks. Freedom to go… freedom to do…
    I am really inspired by your choices… and cheer you from the desert SW!! GO FOR IT! Go chase those dreams!!!

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