I wasn’t prepared for this part of traveling. The part where you meet new people and because you get on you stick together for a short while or a long while or until your plans no longer run side by side.
My 1st traveling Sismance is over. I met to crazy London ladies Minnie and Jahan aka Jahfari (as named by me) in Paraty the day before all of us were due to leave. In that afternoon we discussed everything from love to death and Spanish to sex needless to say we got along.
We headed out for wine that evening and by 10pm I was meeting them in Salvador 2 days later after my epic 32.5 hour bus journey. When i arrived in Salvador Naomi from Holland had been added to the group….. and then there were 4. I had no idea how long i’d be in their company but it ended up being 3 weeks. Most of us haven’t even been on holiday with our best friends for 3 weeks let alone complete strangers.
Actually it worked out fine and the time was full of laughter, jokes and the occasional hangery (hunger anger) outburst. These girls took into account that i was vegan and it Brazil that tends to equal a mission. They helped me fine food, they food vegan meals because of me and they genuinely cared that it was something so important to me.
We shared stories of ex boyfriends, dating disasters (mostly Jahan), holiday romances, future plans, career plans, travel plans, ‘when we return to reality plans’. There were occasional tears from all of us at one point or another but like we’d known each other for years we chatted about them and helped each other navigate what ever situation was getting the other down and then went the beach.
What i wasn’t prepared for was how quickly you can feel like ‘this is how it’s always been’. You can get used to rolling with people and feeling safe and secure with them. You can trust them and that is so nice. Especially after a few weeks of feeling quite alone. For this experience I am truly grateful.
The thing with traveling is that you have to say goodbye. Goodbye to the fun, laughter, safety, security and goodbye to the face you have spent so much time with. It’s saying good bye to whats given you so much joy over the past few weeks that have felt like a small life time. It’s saying goodbye to all that you shared together and then it’s moving on alone without them.
I this part of traveling.This is part of growth and this is part of the experience. I’m not suggesting I won’t see these amazing ladies again. Of course i will. Just you try stop me. However I still have 6 months left of this trip so I know this won’t be the last time I love and leave new friends.
For someone who has my whole life felt like the ‘weird one’ that never really fits in this experience has been priceless. I always judge people by thinking ‘they don’t like me’. I do it all the time. This thought stops me from interacting with or being nice to the person I have judged as ‘not liking me’. This is a vicious cycle because the person I have judged as not liking me is probably going to view my body language and lack of interest in them as ‘she doesn’t like me’ and so what I believe and think becomes my reality. I create it. I’m learning that people do like me. I am not weird, well I am but people like that right?
If you knew what happens in my head, if you knew how I feel when meet new people you might be surprised or you might say “me too”. I always feel big, clumsy and masculine. I feel embarrassed of myself when i’m stood next to other women. I feel like i have nothing valuable to say and that I will only sound stupid if I talk. If someone takes an interest in me I believe they are ‘just being kind’ to make me feel better. I always feel like people are laughing at me because I am a fool. I never feel like a I fit in. I feel like I am not good enough, I am not as good as other people which makes me feel deflated and left out. In a lot of ways I have given up on things in life because in my mind already know I am not good enough and other people are better.
To read this makes me sad. It’s like reading exactly how I felt as a child. As an adult I realise I still hang on to many of these things in certain situations. I realise that they still affect me. However I also see that having this view of myself and the world shapes my experience to fit these thoughts and beliefs. I know it is with in my power to change them. This is something I am working hard to do .Especially being here. Here i can see the patterns, I can think the thoughts, feel the feelings and then question whether or not they are even real. They are not real. Now I must set about changing them.
It’s easy to blame other people for our experiences. It’s easy to blame the past. The problem with doing this is nothing changes or gets better it just stays the same with us thinking and feeling the same. With us seeing the same world. I say it a lot but for us to change outside of us we have to look inside of us and take responsibility for our part in our life situation. We got ourselves here and in reality we can get ourselves anywhere. We just have to look inside an get really honest with ourselves which sometimes is the hardest thing, sometimes it takes a life time. Don’t let it take you a life time. Start now.
Love and light,
Claira Hermet xxx