I have travelled to and lived in many different countries. I find that in each of these places I take on a slightly different identity. Already speaking another language gives a bit of a different nuance to my persona and character in that context. Living such different versions of my every day life helps me discover all the different sides of me. Who am I when everything around me changes? Who do I want to be?
Moving through life we create a narrative of who we are, a story around our being. When we become aware of this, we can shape and influence this narrative and we can practice not to identify with it. Other people, our surroundings and experiences equally shape our stories.
When I’m on a plane or train, travelling between all these places that have each felt like home, I am temporarily in between worlds and realities. And in between my different identities, I travel free from it all. For a little while I get to bask in the feeling of anonymity and I can be whoever I want to be. The anonymity of travel holds so much possibility. Most importantly I can be myself without anything shaping or influencing the story around my being.
Looking out the window I see people, houses, villages, cities and countries pass by on my journey and all of them are filled with their own stories and realities. Travel for me is a way to connect to what matters most, taking a step back from the realities and identities we so often get stuck in and seeing that names, labels, jobs or what we do, doesn’t really matter. What matters is discovering our authentic selves underneath all the layers and creating connections with others and the world around us. What matters is love.
Trying to stay present within all our realities and identities is the art. We don't have to be stuck in patterns of expectations from others or ourselves. Really being who we are and not getting distracted by the stories of our lives is a constant practice. Travelling and living in different places helps me see these different masks I wear and discover what my face looks like underneath, when all stories fall away. The beauty is that each new day is a chance to discover more of who we truly are and to be and act according to who we want to be, whether we are travelling or not.