If I’m being really honest - there was a point I was about ready to throw in the towel on this journey. I have spent more time sick then well and my “stomach bug” was just getting progressively worse. I felt overwhelmed and lost in not knowing what to do to get better. I tried several options to only have symptoms worsen. My energy levels were not normal, so I had to be extremely selective with how I used it up. Often if I did even a mild workout I would be beat for the rest of day .. I have never felt so removed from myself. All the while, trying to remain positive - though nothing can really go as planned under those circumstances.
Then one day I broke. I literally couldn’t stop myself - uncontrollably crying - hyperventilating - anxiety - the works- I didn’t think I could stop. I felt so not understood - and questioned by the legitimacy of how I was feeling ... I felt unsupported, lost and ready to quit it all... but the truth is I couldn’t leave on that note - and I thought there had to be an answer .... I spent too much money on the wrong lab test despite how many times I explained what I needed, and didn’t know where to go from there.
Finally I had someone direct me to a doctor in a clinic who spoke English... I started some meds - went through a coupe days of even worse hell ... but finally got to the first day I felt somewhat human in weeks ... although very tired still - the meds weren’t done ... and I knew I would be moving to a new location soon where I could get the right lab test done as a follow up to my meds. It was not always easy but I remained optimistic and truly believed that everything happens for a reason, knowing there is growth that can come from any experience in how I perceive it all, plus I was not alone in this journey- it’s very common for people to get sick abroad in 3rd world - and while it’s not an awesome part of the experience - it is a part of the hand I was dealt.
I have had a lot of down time to do some serious reflecting on my whole trip leading up to this point... what has worked, what hasn’t.. and how I can approach it differently moving forward honoring what I need it to be.
I have realized that the workaway thing really isn’t for me right now, not aligning with my actual goals of this trip. Mostly because I don’t want to be tied down to one location for so long, site unseen or unexperienced ... I want the freedom to stay if I love somewhere and go if I don’t. I also don’t want to feel pressure or obligation to anyone, and I’m ok with that.
I realize I love being in hostels and lodging where I can meet a variety of people and fellow travelers, but in my own room with my personal space so I can have my own “cave “ to retreat to when I need to honor my frequently, needed personal, quiet time.
I realize that it’s ok to listen to or read about other people’s opinions of what and where is amazing - but in the end I get to make each of those decisions on my own through my own experience, and my opinion can be completely different and that is ok.
There is so much freedom accepting and trusting I don’t have to answer to anyone about why I do what I choose to do, especially when I’m not hurting anyone .... this is hard in work trade - another reason I’m not sold on doing them again, unless I really find the right one for me ... but have to be bold enough and willing to walk away from one that doesn’t fit my journey at this time.
I realize it’s not always going to turn out the way I think and that’s part of the experience and I have to find the balance of acceptance and making the best out of what is, unless I can change it, and then a willingness to do so.