I turned to my husband and said, “What if we just quit our jobs, went traveling… and never came back?”
Without skipping a beat – “OK” he said.
And I knew he meant it.
It was 2017, we were living in the eye of the shittiest shit storm of stress and anxiety.
And this was the solution, I just knew it. Burn it all and run. And if you’re anything like me, mega life stress manifests itself as dead-eyed surface calm that is actually legitimately frightening to see.
Case in point – I went to work the Monday morning my dad died to get my computer so I could work from home. Some would say that’s textbook shock, some would argue pathological productivity – like, give that girl a raise!
Kidding, it was stone-cold shock – I am like the Ash Barty of internalizing all the feelings #AKATHEBEST
Half way through the year, I was 8 months into my cancer treatment and I was fully wallowing in “life is fleeting/everything is tenuous/WHAT DOES IT ALL MEAN?”
Interlaced with that hot mess was the double whammy of having just lost my father and mother in law to cancer within the past 2 months. I was now craving anything but hum-drum normality; the universe was screaming its intention:
“Don’t let the door hit you on the way out, Stacey Price because it will – in fact it already did and it clocked you right in the face. Pick your ass up, pack those bags and sayonara, it’s been a slice!”
To dream or to go?
We let those same lives continue to unravel around us as they always had and we didn’t fundamentally change, well, anything.
I mean, we had changed – in our cores we had, as you only do when life feeds up some of it’s most wrenching trauma – but we quickly, comfortably slipped back into the same, worn patterns.
Although the reward outweighed the risk, we sided with risk.
Our bold ‘the earth is our oyster’ proclamations replaced with the more familiar ‘wouldn’t it be nice…’ on our Saturday afternoon walk to the grocery store. Although the reward outweighed the risk, we sided with risk. Wrapping up an entire existence to travel across the world untethered, seemed almost too enormous a reality to contemplate.
The dream was shiny enough to drip feed us a little droplets of joy but too unwieldy to actually follow through with.
So, as many of us do, we didn’t.
Is that you, Universe? It’s me, Stacey.
Another phone call.
We were now almost out of parents, thanks once again to the C-that-shall-not-be-named.
In that moment, I realized that we had, in our infinite wisdom (read: hindsight) maybe missed the chance to lay at the feet of our parents, give absolute love and get all that love in return. Without fear of money lost, of time not spent at the office, of what-ifs.
Holy shit, what if we hadn’t stressed about the future and just ran home to our mums and dads and stayed until they no longer needed us without any concern other than theirs?
Oh is that an Albatross around your neck? Why yes, yes it is.
We are terrifyingly not in control of our trajectory. We couldn’t stop the world spinning around us, we couldn’t stop the most favourite people in our lives from leaving us.
However, just possibly, we could have a hand at writing the rest of the story in our own humble words.
To embrace mother-f*cking vulnerability and take a step out into that fantastic abyss.
Home Sweet Somewhere
It’s been almost a year since we left ‘home’.
Packed up what we had – things that we thought would be impossible to pack – like 16 year careers, a house we owned, cats we adored (James and Lizzie, if you’re reading this Mummy loves you!).
But it turns out it was really f*cking possible. We embarked on – brace for full Oprah – a 4 month soul discovery across Europe as best friends and best married people. We shared, cried, unpacked and hashed out what 2 years of trauma does to a soul.
We finally washed up on the shores of Australia on that headiest of days, January 1st 2019, as shiny and bright as the New Years Day itself, baby!
We are not healed but we have fundamentally changed; grief and travel will do that to you.
Australia, you lucky bastard, when we leave you, you’ll know you were loved. We’ve learned some valuable lessons on this journey.
So, grab today by the balls and remember to tell everyone (and their bartender on a Friday night) what they mean to you.
Embrace the reward and risk can f- right off.
If you have a life changing travel story to tell us – we’d love to hear it! Hit us in the comments below xx