Best Breakup Advice: Travel the World

October 20, 2014
Best Breakup Advice: Travel the World

pink pangea foreign correspondent As the famous proverb says, there are two sides to every coin. As bad as a heartbreak feels, it also can lead you to some awesome things in life. I always preferred to look at the bright side of things, but I honestly never thought that I would see my failed relationships as bliss.

But here I am, thanking God for everything that went wrong in the past and understanding that all of those boyfriends who weren’t right for me, all those who dumped me, and all of those who never gave me a chance actually did me a big favor. I never really had to settle down and, because I was free to do everything and go anywhere I wanted, I was able to use those chances to the fullest.

We women suffer pretty badly from breakups as we are sensitive creatures who take stuff really emotionally. Besides that, we are usually under a lot of pressure to get married and have kids. We have those biological clocks that are ticking and although we don’t live in a world where our only goal is to have kids, we are still judged if we don’t start to settle and grow a family by a certain age. I’m not saying that men don’t suffer from breakups too, but our society is more kind to them in regards to how and when they decide settle down.

My first really bad breakup happened in Spain, when the guy I was with decided to leave me. I was so upset and so hurt that I wouldn’t get out of bed for a few weeks. I didn’t really know how to handle all of this sadness and depression so I decided that the best thing to do was to go on a trip. I had some savings, wasn’t working at that time, and I truly felt that only going away could heal my soul. And it did.

I did whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted, didn’t have to compromise with anyone, and I could truly experience everything that seemed appealing to me.

I had traveled before but never really alone and without a plan. I bought an InterRail ticket that allowed me to travel for free by train in most European countries, bought a backpack and waved goodbye to Barcelona. It was a completely spontaneous trip and I didn’t really know where I was going – the only thing I knew was that I needed to reach Poland before I ran out of money.

I visited a few cities in Spain and then went to France. I even stayed in Paris for few days all by myself! Yeah, me, my broken heart and Paris, sounds like a disaster, right? But it was actually great. Everyone who claims that you should only go to Paris with a partner is wrong. It’s such a great city and you can enjoy it perfectly alone. Well, I actually think that you can enjoy everything in your life just by yourself but that’s a topic for another post.

After France I went to Italy, Slovenia, Hungary and then back to Poland. I had a great time and I enjoyed being by myself. In fact, it was during this trip that I realized how much I liked traveling alone – I did whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted, didn’t have to compromise with anyone, and I could truly experience everything that seemed appealing to me. It felt great.

I know that I would never have gone on a trip like this if my boyfriend and I had stayed together. He didn’t really like to travel and even if we had gone somewhere together, it wouldn’t be the same. I don’t really know what would have happened if I hadn’t taken my solo Euro trip but I know that the experience changed me and opened my eyes to many things. I realized how much I adore traveling and how empty my life is without it. I became fascinated by other cultures and places, and I promised myself that no matter what I’d do in the future, it will involve traveling.

Best Breakup Advice: Travel the World

A few years later, the same thing happened again. I fell seriously in love right before setting out on my long-planned trip to Asia and New Zealand. I didn’t plan on falling in love.  In fact, the last thing I wanted was to get emotionally attached to someone but you know, you can’t really control those things–they just happen in the most unexpected moments. I started to feel confused and torn–how could I choose between two things I really loved?

I was happy to be with someone who seemed to be perfect for me but deep inside I felt unhappy because I found myself in a place where I had to make a very hard choice. I knew that I couldn’t have both things, and I felt like no matter what, I would miss something: either I would miss the love of my life or I would miss the biggest adventure of my life.

I didn’t plan on falling in love.  In fact, the last thing I wanted was to get emotionally attached to someone but you know, you can’t really control those things.

Although it felt like a lose-lose situation, I tried really hard to come up with a perfect solution. In the end, I decided that I would modify my travel plans, make them shorter and my departure date later. I wasn’t completely satisfied with that solution but I couldn’t do anything about it. I had to compromise and try to make those two things work. But again, in the most unexpected moment, things got complicated and we broke up. Well, actually he broke up with me. To be honest, I wasn’t so eager to end the relationship.

After some time of deep sadness, moaning about how horrible love is and how unlucky I was, I realized that actually, he did me a big favor. I loved him and I wouldn’t have let the relationship go even if it meant missing the biggest trip of my life. I had been planning my trip to New Zealand for almost a year. I had gotten a working permit–which isn’t easy for Polish citizens to get – only 100 visas are given to Poles each year! I had put in all of this effort and I was about to let it go. Thankfully, that’s not the case anymore, and after the mess I experienced during these last couple of months, I finally have my departure date!

Best Breakup Advice: Travel the World

As I said in the beginning, I prefer to look on the bright side of life and to use my broken heart as a motivation to keep traveling the world and enjoying my solo trips. After all, that’s when we learn the most about ourselves and realize who we really are and what we really want. Constant questions from my parents (and grandmother) about me settling down annoy me but I would never ever exchange anything I’ve experienced so far for a cozy relationship.

Of course, I prefer for my heart to be happy rather than broken but if it has to be broken again at least it will be broken traveling around the world and filling itself with love while seeing new places and meeting amazing people along the way.

I don’t know if things happen because they are meant to happen or if life is a consequence of random incidents. What I do know is that I don’t feel torn apart anymore and I’m eagerly counting down the days to the biggest trip of my life.

About Joanna Kowalewska

Joanna Kowalewska comes from Poland but she’s been living abroad for the last 9 years. For Joanna, traveling is more than learning new languages and discovering new cultures, it’s a way of getting to know herself better and finding her real identity. Joanna is a passionate traveler, amateur photographer, and Photoshop lover. She can’t stay in one place for too long because she feels that the world is calling her – that’s also the name of her travel blog where she shares her experiences and adventures with the world.

2 thoughts on “Best Breakup Advice: Travel the World

  1. Nutela
    October 22, 2014

    See the world 🙂

  2. Amina Niepsuj
    October 20, 2014

    The wisest words ever. Keep it up!

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