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This Is The Work Blog by Alex J Brown
  • Writer's pictureAlex J Brown

I Bought a Plane Ticket

I bought a plane ticket. I bought a plane ticket a mere two weeks after buying a car. My first car. A nice car. I have a car payment now, and I bought a plane ticket.

It's not so much that I can't afford it - I almost can...ish. It's not even so much that I'm worried I won't succeed at it - I think I'll be okay?

In fact, it might be something more, something bigger.

I walked around my house, repeating, "Oh my god" for over an hour.

Why did I press that button?

Why did it seem so effortless?

Why wasn't there more of a question involved?

Where was that doubtful voice in my head, telling me all the reasons this was the wrong thing?

I can't help but think that my heart knew what I needed and wanted before my rational mind could weigh in. Needless to say, my brain is still trudging behind, working to catch up.

Maybe it's time for an awakening.

I was awaiting the doubtful voice, the critical parent in my head wagging her finger at me and telling me that I'm in trouble. That I'm stupid and senseless. I've really done it this time. Who do I think I am, walking in the clouds, booking trips to Italy on a whim?

There's not an ounce of logic in that.

Fourteen days. Bologna, Florence. Venice. I just...bought it. And now I'm taking my first international trip. Alone. To Italy.

This is some Eat Pray Love shit, and I feel basic AF - but also kind of awesome.

(This is the part where my compulsion for honesty takes over and I tell you that I literally did buy Eat Pray Love...on Audiobook...and I've been listening to Elizabeth Gilbert's soothing voice tell me all about her journey toward self-discovery for the past several days. Shamelessly, and with a big ass grin my face while I'm at it. Liz gets it.)

It's funny how I waited. I waited and waited for the shame to settle in, but all I could feel was okay. All I could feel was that the money would return soon enough. That I would make it work. Why, in all of the potential of that moment, was I waiting, listening for shame to settle in?

We get so caught up in life, in scarcity, in what we don't have. We spend all this time trying to make logical decisions so that we aren't seen as childish. We forgo play for adulthood, creativity for stability, passion for rationality.

Can't I have it all?

But if I can't, do I really want the latter in lieu of the former? Is that the life I've worked myself up to? The life that has me waiting for shame to show up on my doorstep every time my story takes a unique and abrupt turn?


Hell no.

This is the investment I want to make. On new adventures. On joy. On growing. On myself. On the story.

And so, the shameful voices do not get their glory. Not today. I'm off to Italy in June. Clearly, if I can't find a single doubtful, guilty feeling to feel - despite my habitual desperation for that familiar tone - there must something good to find there.

Maybe...just maybe...I'm ready.

I guess we'll find out. It's non-refundable.

I'm curious, friends, because I know I'm not the only person who has traveled to liven things up in my soul. Have you made abrupt travel decisions in your life? What called you to travel? How has traveling impacted your worldview and personal growth?

Let me know in the comments section, and if you've got recommendations for Bologna, Florence, or Venice, I'm all ears...or eyes, I guess. Regardless, you have my attention.


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