I’m sure I’m not alone in this when I say that getting back to normal life after a trip can be a rather depressing affair.
I’ve noticed this last time, in particular, that there is a very obvious timeline of emotions that follows a trip. I think the longer a person is away, the longer the ‘recovery’ period.
For short holidays of 10 days or less, there is an obvious sensation of ‘Did I even go anywhere?’, only a few days after arriving back home. It almost feels like the trip was just a blip in the norm. There are memories, sure, but did the holiday actually recharge us? Some people ask you how your trip was. Some people didn’t even realize you went anywhere.
After being away for 6 weeks, and now being back for about 6 weeks, I have noticed a clear pattern of emotions that I have experienced.
#1. Happy to be home!
After being away for so long, my partner and I were definitely ready to get home. It’s funny because after a while, I find that I begin to crave the normal. I get tired of deciding what to do each day, planning how to get places, figuring out what is next. This time I found myself looking forward to my normal routine, and getting back to my cozy house, pets and garden.
#2. Trip Fever
The first couple weeks after getting home was spent in a bit of a post trip Euphoria. I’m sure getting over the jet lag contributed to this, but I also think it’s that the memories are so fresh, and you can’t help but recall events and places you explored. It’s almost like you are bridging a dream world, one foot in your reality, and one foot still travelling. During this time, friends and family want to know how the trip was. “What was your favourite place?” “What was the highlight?” It’s almost like you are forced to keep the memories fresh, like they aren’t allowed to slip away just yet. As many of my friends had read my blog, I have laughed and discussed THEIR highlights of our trip, and have spent many enjoyable moments recalling our adventures to others that didn’t read it.
3. Back to Reality
At some point, maybe about 3 weeks after getting back, while painting a wall somewhere (I am a house painter in my normal life), I had my first thought “There has got to be more to life than this.” It’s laughable really, here I was craving my ‘normal’ routine only 3 or 4 weeks ago, and now that I was back in it, I was already sick of it. I pondered this thought a lot and have come to the following conclusion;
When I travel, my life in that moment is so full of wonders and excitement that I actually can’t wait to write about it. How great is that? If we could all have these feeling about our life ALL of the time, I think we would be the happiest little society that ever could be.
Unfortunately for me, it’s generally just not the same when I get back to the regular routine. I know for sure that nobody wants to hear stories about my long days of painting walls, driving from meeting to meeting, cuddling with the cats, eat…..sleep…..repeat…..
After feeling like I have had nothing to talk about, and surely nothing to write about, I have found that I am slowly emerging from this place of self pity. I think it’s a normal feeling to sort of be let down by our mundane day to day existence. Don’t get me wrong, I am fortunate in that I actually DO love my life, and am grateful for many things, but the craving to see and do more is resting somewhere in my gut like a pouncing Tiger, re-energizing, re-charging, and lingering in wait for the next attack.
I DO know that there IS more to life than this. This steady rhythm of eat, work, sleep (with some fun thrown in on the weekends). I have a vision of the life I want, a life that is currently being manifested in my mind.
A life of continued fun and excitement, where EVERYDAY is so great that I feel like writing about it!
And so, as I paint the walls I inevitably do some sort of meditating. I remind myself to focus. Focus on the next journey.
Work hard. Pay off bills. Save up for the next one. Don’t get stuck. Move forward. Dream. Build. Create.
And most importantly, I remind myself that THIS is NOT how the story ends!