Michael's diary - A newfound courage to change

So now that I have a plan, how do I go about it? 

For me, this journey symbolized a huge turning point in my life, even before I had left. 

I was going to finally see the world, travel through all kinds of different terrains, meet all kinds of different people with different ideologies and ultimately change who I was fundamentally. But before I could set forth, I had to leave behind everything that I had created in the past 20 years; my career, my home, my friends and family. 

Of course a big decision like this came with its fair share of doubt, however, something that I felt especially strong was that it was a point in my life where it felt as if I needed to have a major change in my life. 

It became the question of; if I weren’t to take this opportunity now, was this going to end up being another major regret in my life? 

The final push I needed was in a particularly difficult moment in my life. As though a higher being had heard about my grievances with my desire to travel to italy, my life in Australia had felt as if it were rejecting me; I had lost my home to terrible rental circumstances, I was about to lose my job at the University of Melbourne due to educational bureaucracy and it felt like I was on the edge of losing my grip on life. 

Of course in difficult times, we usually turn to loved ones for comfort. For me, this person was my father. We had a tumultuous relationship to say the least, my father was never around and when he was we were constantly at each other's throat. However, our relationship had begun to blossom as we spent more time around each other and in turn, we began to understand one another.

Michael as a child together with his father

Some time passed, and I found myself talking to some of my international friends. I shared with them my thoughts on traveling, they of course were in full support of my goal, sharing stories with me and reinforcing my previous impressions. They all said the same thing “Traveling will change everything”. It was really interesting to hear this, as my friends and I were all expecting to go through a drastic change; some were transitioning into long term relationships and others were expecting children. Something resonated with me in that moment, we were all going through the same thing, yet they have the courage to continue forth. In that moment I knew that if I weren’t to move forward in the direction I wanted, life itself would force me to move in its direction. I went away in high spirits, full confidence and ready to  move forward, however, my father had passed away shortly after. 

As I was standing in front of my fathers’ coffin, reminiscing about the journey he and I had been through, regret was something I found to be at the forefront of my thoughts; what could have been and what it would have looked like? In this moment, I felt all my anxieties disappear. Now was the time to act and so I did. I quit my job, I packed my bags and ventured forward to unknown lands with the blessings of my friends and the hope of starting anew. 

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