attachment | 07.31.17

Forked River, NJ

Only five days into the trip and it feels like we’ve gone on a month’s worth of adventures. Every experience is new and unknown, spontaneous and exciting. Between car camping in Walmart parking lots and pitching a tent in Middle-of-Nowhere, USA, MTV Cribs would be loving our glamorous living arrangements. My family and I took Bryant on a boat for his first time and we got to swim in the Atlantic Ocean off of the New Jersey shore. We climbed the Ledges Overlook and Brandywine Falls in Ohio and we enjoyed a beautiful sunny day at the beach in Indiana (weird, I know).

Ledges Overlook, Cuyahoga Valley, OH

There has been one thing that has been a bit difficult to adjust to – not seeing friends and family every day. I’ve never really left home like this before and it’s hard to not have the same kind of interactions with people as I would back home. It’s not quite a homesick feeling for being in Maryland so much as a homesick feeling for the people there. I’m beginning to learn and understand the concept of attachment and how the relationships I have with myself and with other people are changing.

Brandywine Falls, Cuyahoga Valley, OH

Co-dependency is not good in any kind relationship. I’ve noticed that it is often driven by a fear of loss or of rejection. Depending on someone isn’t inherently bad, but like anything there has to be a balance. I will no longer allow my happiness to be dictated solely by another person or thing. My happiness is paramount. There is nothing selfish about putting yourself first. Like I said before (and like I will probably say a thousand times again) – balance is key. There is a median between an unhealthy, interdependent relationship and being entirely self-reliant and sovereign without allowing for meaningful relationships to develop. It became pretty simple once I realized that I don’t need anyone. I do enjoy the time I have with loved ones and I embrace every moment I have with them. It isn’t “I can’t live without you, I need you” so much as it is “I am aware that I don’t need you in order for me to live fully and happily, but I choose to spend and to enjoy my time I get with you”. Even though this idea is pretty simple, that doesn’t mean that it is easy. Now that I have a better understanding, though, I feel more confident and that feeling is helping me through a lot of the feelings of separation and distance with my friends. They are all with me in spirit no matter where I am, even if it’s 3 thousand miles away.

Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore

I hope that I am able to better develop my self-confidence and independence so I can keep enjoying this trip to the fullest extent. Meanwhile… onto Iowa!

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Attaining Ataraxia

at·a·rax·ia

\ˌat-ə-ˈrak-sē-ə\       noun

An untroubled and tranquil condition of the soul. (Greek author, Sextus Empiricus)

at·a·rax·ia

\ˌat-ə-ˈrak-sē-ə\       noun

An untroubled and tranquil condition of the soul. (Greek author, Sextus Empiricus)

I was inspired to start this blog because I wanted to document the journey that I am on and all of the adventures along the way. My life is changing; I am growing in maturity, confidence, spirituality… I was feeling so stuck, burned out and lost. I tried doing what we’re “supposed” to do – go to a good college, get a degree, get a job and build a successful career. I really did try. The conventional path wasn’t right for me and so I ended up feeling the way I did. I tried for years to do and to be what was considered “normal”. By trying to force myself into this way of life, I made myself miserable. I finally decided to take control. To free myself.

Before I get too carried away, I should probably introduce myself. I’m Caroline and I’m a 20-something just trying to find myself in this world. So original, right? Bet you’ve never heard that one before. However, I do hope to offer a unique perspective and to have some interesting experiences to share. Maybe some of you can relate. Maybe you are or have been on this same journey. Maybe you’ve always wanted to liberate yourself from the life we’ve been conditioned to accept but weren’t sure how. Regardless of the reason you may have come across my blog, I do hope that you find some value in it.

I want to use this blog as a platform to talk about my experiences and share some thoughts as I continue to learn, unlearn, understand and develop what I need to in order to attain ataraxia.