You started traveling long-term, excited and naive with high hopes and dreams, and suddenly, you find yourself spending more time, a lot more than the usual, with a fellow traveler of the opposite sex and then, the possibility of starting a relationship is lingering around the corner. Will you risk it knowing you’re away from home and your comfort zone or run away than risk getting hurt?
Is it a go or a no? Based on experience, I’d say NO but who am I kidding anyway.
As I was doing all the necessary preparations for traveling long-term, I thought I had everything covered until I came face to face with certain guys who dared showed interest in me. Dating while traveling didn’t actually occur to me when I was in planning stage, more so, entering a relationship.
Solo traveling in an uncharted territory is complicated enough, so why complicate it more? Again, who am I kidding?
And so, I gave it a shot. It scared the shit out of me because for the first time after 6 years of singlehood, I was in a relationship again. Was. Yes, you got that right because it only lasted for a month.
I met this guy in Sucre last August, did Machu Picchu together in September, and after 2.5months apart, we decided to meet up again last December and that was when it became official. We had a great time together volunteering in a NGO, spending time with the kids and other volunteers, exploring Trujillo and Cajamarca, and more.
Then one fateful afternoon in Paracas, just before NYE, it ended. In all honesty, I screwed it up (I’m claiming 70%) and said a lot of hurtful things, which I now regret. I was blinded with emotions that I failed to see the bigger picture and without realizing it, I was letting my past ruin my present.
I tried to salvage whatever was left but I guess it was too late and come January 1, he said the words – it’s over. I already knew it was over long before he said it but I just had to try because that’s the least I could do. And so, we said our goodbyes and went our separate ways.
I deleted all our photos and all his messages, and was more than ready to move forward. I thought to myself that getting over him won’t take long and besides, I got over an 8-year relationship and nothing could be worse than that.
I did carry on with my life easily, went to Cotahuasi (a small town northeast of Arequipa) by myself, and found solace and remedy. That trip definitely helped me. Night after night, day after day, realizations came pouring in. I’ve been hiding too many skeletons in my closet, letting my past control my present by being scared, and created my own monster because I was insecure.
Thinking about it all now, I realized that it had to happen. I needed this so I can come to terms with my own demons. I transformed into another version of myself, a better and wiser version, but with it, a high price to pay. Should I be given a chance to change anything, I wouldn’t want to change anything because it smacked me awake and taught me a lifelong lesson.
It is true when they say that people come into your life for a season or a lifetime but always with a reason. Miquel, that’s his name btw, came into my life to teach me something about life and about myself and he served his purpose that’s why it had to end. It just bothers me until now how my first relationship can last 8 years and my 2nd, just a month. Of course, I would’ve wanted him to be more than just a chapter in my life but everything happens for a reason and I have to accept that.
So, will I enter a relationship again while I’m still on the road? Maybe yes, maybe no. All I know is, I am no longer afraid and finally, I got rid of the baggage of my past.
“There is only one way to learn. It’s through action. Everything you need to know you have learned through your journey.” – Paulo Coelho, The Alchemist