I have loved to travel for as long as I can remember. It is in my blood…it is something I can not help.
I have read so many blogs about struggles with relationships and how to make it work. Some feel it is only possible to find love with a fellow traveler, others are able to make it work with time on the road and time at a home base. I have been a little smug, thinking that I could make it work with someone who doesn’t share my wanderlust. After all, while I am an adventurous wanderer with a thirst to explore, I also have some homebody tendencies. I love having that home base to come home to with my people, my things and memories. I love having that partner – you know, the one you can’t wait to share your stories with! Your victories and your defeats…the shoulder to cry on and the person to share the Sunday paper with (guess who always reads the travel section!!!)
Like I said, I have been a little smug. I knew we had our difficulties, and I complained about his telling me I was doing things wrong all the time. It often wore me out. I had a lot of unhappiness, and friends said we should call it off. He was completely unsupportive of this blog which has taken on a life of its own. Life at home was rough. At times, travel was an escape as much as an adventure, but I still looked forward to seeing him and having that someone to share my life with. I loved our philosophical conversations and the cycling trips to Europe. I boldly wrote how lucky I was when, just over a year ago, I wrote about the major transition I was going through – the transition from corporate life to life on the road. It was my transition zone. It was a chance for me to explore myself and grow after years of hard core selling for major corporations. We skyped regularly as I traveled through Europe until I bought a phone….it was so much easier to call him. We talked about loving someone and setting them free…if they come back it was meant to be. I came back, nervous of how things would go upon my return. I had been the master of my own domain for nearly 3 full months and had blossomed personally. But, as much as I had blossomed, and as much as I didn’t admit to or write about it, I longed to have that person share some of my experiences. To live it together. I wanted to look back on my life with my partner, from a rocking chair on the porch, and reminisce about life – both the good and the bad! I guess I wanted to have it all! We had been through so much together…the last rocky patch was longer than normal, but there were extenuating circumstances.
I am so sad to say, I was wrong and he broke my heart. Grant it, it took a year for him to do it. Perhaps my time away changed me too much, or perhaps we didn’t change at all! We went back to some of the same negative patterns, and he began to resent my travel even more. Given that I traveled for work often in my 9 – 5 corporate life, I thought we could make it work but I didn’t know how to talk to him about it. He didn’t want to hear it. I know we had our problems, but after so many years, who doesn’t? I was deluding myself. The writing was on the wall, and I didn’t want to read it!
Then it all fell apart. After being away for a few days, I learned that my father, who had been sick for years, was now terminal. The world was a blur…I have to say, there was some relief in that as I watched my dad suffer, and the tole it took on me, and my relationship. I have been curtailing my travels to be more local so as to not be too far away, and spent much time out at my father’s house. It was at that time that my partner of 6 years decided to end it! Poof – in an instant, I had lost everything. My father is dying and the only pillar in my life bailed. My head hasn’t stopped spinning and my heart is terribly broken! Even travel plans don’t excite as they normally do. Will there be a light at the end of this tunnel? I am at a crossroads here – torn apart by the 2 men in my life and unable to put my feet on the ground. Crushed by the one who left me and the one who is slowly disintegrating due to cancer. I have written about solo travel – but what about solo life? Everyone is gone.
To add insult to injury, while I was away, I got calls from friends at home asking about my partner and a girl who has been a thorn in my side for years – “she is not a problem”, he assured me, “she is a little weird, socially awkward. No interest here”. I trusted and believed him. And he crushed me. I know, you are reading this and saying, get over it! He is not worth it. That is what everyone has said to me so far….but what else do you say?
So back to the initial question? What do you do with a broken heart? Will mine ever heal? While my travel is still limited on account of my father, do I run for the border the second he is gone? Will I ever find love again? Can a travel writer find the balance between life on the road and a life at home?
I am tormented by the situation. I would not have been able to live with myself if I had denied who I was and my passion for travel. Life is too short to fake it. You have to be true to yourself. But what do you do when you are the one who wants to have a home life and a life on the road….such a conflict. I have to ask – how is travel writing any less of a career than a business person who travels. Of course, I earn far less money than the executive, but there is little difference between the person who travels for meetings and the person who travels for writing. Life is still on the road. I just dreamed that I could have both – where did I go so wrong?
I am stuck here. This is not my traditional post, but I would love your feedback…is love on the road a possibility with a person who is based at home? Or as a traveler, am I destined to be alone?