There are certain things I love about Admission travel season. Being an admission officer typically means traveling for weeks at a time, sometimes months. My schedule keeps me on the road about 5 weeks during the fall season, which I think is definitely reasonable. Some admission people dread traveling, but I actually look forward to it.
pretty very independent person. I’ve always had a streak that made me want to do my own thing and be on my own. Don’t get me wrong, I miss home when I’m gone. Riley, Coco, and Bella definitely make me happy to return home. I mean, how do you not get excited to come home to this?
But there’s something…freeing, about traveling alone. I get to be myself on my own terms and I don’t have anyone to rely on except for me.
So many people, especially extroverts (I count myself in that category), usually hate being by themselves. It’s scary, right? Alone with your thoughts. So much time to reflect on what’s good about your life. Or what’s missing. Or whether you’re in the place you thought you’d be at this point.
In all seriousness, though, ponder this for a second…
Ask a man to describe himself. He’ll likely tell you some stuff he really loves or his hobbies, followed by something he’s probably good at or his profession.
Now ask a woman to describe herself. She’ll probably tell you something like, “I’m a wife, mother, a daughter, an aunt….” etc. As women, we tend to define ourselves based on the role we play to the people we love the most. Is there anything wrong with this? Not really. But who are you when you’re alone? When you’re not busy being a mom, or a wife, or taking care of others, how would you describe yourself then?
I had a lot of free time yesterday on the road between visits and I decided to just grab some lunch and fresh air. I bought a roast beef sub and pulled my car into a nearby park.
It was beautiful outside. I opened the windows and the car door, enjoyed my lunch in complete silence, and started doing what a lot of people do when they’ve had extended time on their own. I started talking to myself.
I’m not crazy, I promise. That time alone, however, gave me the chance to enjoy my own company and to spend time thinking about things that really only matter to me. It was awesome.
I got to put away work stuff, home stuff, family stuff, wife stuff. I just spent some time thinking about Kelly stuff. I put my all-time favorite piano song that I’ve literally loved since before I can remember on repeat and listened to it 4 times straight through (It’s this one, in case you care).
I thought to myself what it would be like if I lived in the Caribbean. I thought about whether I should run a half marathon or not. I thought about graduate school and how I should probably get on that. I thought (during song replay number 3) that I should really play some piano when I get home.
I didn’t think about earth-shattering things. The point is, I got to hear myself think. I spent some time just being me, with no distractions. In a day and age in which we are constantly plugged in to what others are doing, when they’re doing it, and trying to be all things to all people, it’s important to just be alone. It’s a relief and a gift to have that time with myself to regroup.
I honestly believe that everyone should travel alone at least once. Stay in a hotel alone, eat dinner alone, go to the movies alone. If you’ve never done it, it sounds depressing, but it’s not! Just think of it as extended quality time with yourself. I promise you, you probably need it more than you realize.
Today I’m headed back home to the office, my husband, my pets, and the wonderful life that I’ve made for myself. And the second the house is empty, I’ll be sitting at my piano playing my favorite songs, just for me. 🙂
Have you ever taken a trip solo?