The Freedom of De-cluttering My Life

May 4, 2016
The Freedom of De-cluttering My Life

If you’d met me back in 2012, you would declare there had been some kind of mistake, because there is no way the girl I was back then is the woman I am now.

Tired, worn out, and shut off. That’s who I was. I had a house full of “things and stuff” a husband and three bedrooms, a business and a second job… All to support this lifestyle my parents, the media, religion and peers said I “wanted” or “needed” in life.

One day I realized all it was doing was weighing me down. So I walked away.

I got up, as if some trance I had been in for years had suddenly released me. I didn’t blink, I didn’t mourn the loss of “stuff.” I was elated. I took my suitcase with some of my clothes and computer and I left behind everything I’d worked towards and thought I had wanted, all the years of early mornings and late shifts, working over time for the designer dollars.

Vagabond, gypsy, nomad: all terms for wanderers. I didn’t associate myself with these names, but I quickly realized that I didn’t belong stuck in one place. I was a citizen of the world.

In a perfect world I’d tell you I figured it out then and there. But I’m taking baby steps. We all take personal journeys. The reason I share mine is this. On that day in 2012, and for the rest of the year, I realized that stuff didn’t bring me joy. Stuff didn’t make things better. I didn’t feel worse without it.

I felt BETTER. And then I heard what I’d known all along, in the back of my head. A voice whispered: “explore”.

Vagabond, gypsy, nomad: all terms for wanderers. I didn’t associate myself with these names, but I quickly realized that I didn’t belong stuck in one place. I was a citizen of the world. The country I was born and raised in, through no fault of my own, denies me my rights. My parents’ house, no matter how loving, isn’t my home.

I wander, not for lack of direction or because I am missing something, but because something deep inside me yearns to see mountains, and swim in rivers… To travel on roads with no signs and be an explorer.

But then I started to grow roots again, falling into the trap of collecting things. I lived in a tiny cabana on stilts over the ocean for a season. I was forcing myself to settle, and again, life told me no. A hurricane ripped my home to shreds while I was visiting friends in Canada. I returned to a shredded house.

Salt and sand were through all my “things and stuff.” I worked tirelessly to salvage and clean it, and find a new home to settle some more. I didn’t listen to the whispers to keep moving.

But it can’t stay still… it’s a restless soul I have.

I eventually sold it all, packed a few small boxes in storage, took one suitcase and got a one-way ticket to the end of the earth. I’ve been here for six months. I’ve got a van and the open road. The Wifi is weak, but I intend to share my adventures, just to remember that life is more important then “things and stuff.”

About Julia Markham

Julia MarkhamBermuda born freelancer, working in design and marketing.
Passions include: Travel, Gluten free living, animal rights advocacy and being a complete beach bum.

One thought on “The Freedom of De-cluttering My Life

  1. Avatar
    dogzzarecool
    May 6, 2016
    Reply

    Often my best times are when I am out on the road again all by myself listening to satellite radio and just driving to the next stop. I love road trips. I did one two years ago for 2 months and drove out to Yellowstone from Boston and just explored Montana and Wyoming. So much fun.

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