Brave. 50 shades of it, apparently. Up for challenges. Strong, confident, adventurous. Feel the fear, and do it anyway… All of these descriptions have been attributed to little old me since 2014 threw me the curveball of my husband leaving, and 2016 saw this blog start up as a document of all the ways in which I was taking life by the balls.
But reader, I have to fess up. There are times when I feel … err… how shall I put it… ‘less than brave’? ‘fearful’? ‘lacking in confidence’? Even ‘a bit of a fraud’! Yes, there are moments when I am posting about being brave and facing life head on, whilst managing massive internal wranglings about whether I myself am up to walking the walk. And I am going through one of those times right now.
I have oft bemoaned being stuck on life’s hamster wheel and wished for the opportunity to escape the mundanity. I have created lists of the places I’d like to see and railed about how, given the time and space, I would take off and get some of those places ticked off my travel bucket list. And last month, as I reported in my post Stick or twist?, I found myself hopping out of a job and into a whole month off before I start the new one. Surely this was life giving me an opportunity to put my money where my mouth is and actually go somewhere? There remained the slightly thorny question of facing this opportunity as a solo traveller… which I think has been the biggest blocker to getting to grips with this challenge… but at the end of the day, who am I to encourage others to #learntobebrave if I can’t model that myself?
So, I have swallowed hard, pushed my insecurities to the side, and clicked the ‘book it now’ button! On Monday, I set off on for North Morocco. I am joining a small group organised tour with Intrepid Travel that takes me from Casablanca to Marrakech, taking in a number of villages, towns and cities in between and travelling by plane, train, minibus and foot. I have spent much of this week booking ‘fit to fly’ tests, filling in forms, investing in bits and pieces to help me enjoy the adventure (more walking socks and some walking poles!) and planning how to pack light.
And as I sit and write this post, I have to tell you that I am feeling a sense of excitement and terror in equal measure. The ‘what ifs’ are running through my brain almost constantly, and it’s taking quite a lot of energy to silence the gremlins and allow myself to look forward to what promises to be an amazing adventure. One or multiple blog posts will undoubtedly follow as I let you know how it went…