I’ve written this post some time ago already, but didn’t feel like publishing it among all the happy “21 countries and counting” type of posts. The tension is all gone now, more space for my “almost no countries visited and counting” summary.
Anybody has heard of a sinusoid? It’s all about ups and downs, peaks and valleys, call it what you want, but it all goes down to one. You can’t have the peaks all the time.
2015 had way more downs for me, some of them being my responsibility.
2015 just started wrong, with some big and unexpected troubles in my private life. The biggest one was in my long-standing relationship. My boyfriend and I were just getting over a massive and long crisis, so the whole January was a pretty sensitive month. The good outcome of this all was that we got over it and are better off than ever before and I can’t think of any other person whose presence I appreciate THAT much in my life.
Next, I totally fell into “work-eat-sleep” mode and after months of such existence, I realised all my energy and creativity had disappeared. I didn’t touch my camera for more than 9 months. I didn’t even write this blog, because there was nothing interesting I could write about, or at least, I couldn’t notice it. I was basically in a deep shit hole, seeing no way out.
In the spring, I changed my jobs. Imagine you are a fish and suddenly you have to behave like a bird for most of the day. No offence to either birds or fish here. If you spend over 8 hours a day in a certain environment and then you change it, it’s a shock. It was a shock for me and I am glad I survived it. In the end, although the job can sometimes be extremely stressful, this was a good decision and I would do it again. However, to be frank, I still don’t agree with the idea of “full time” job, where you spend a whole day in the office. Sometimes I feel I’m wasting my youth in front of the computer and I hate that feeling.
A decreased number of holidays was a direct consequence of the job change. My travel summary is really poor this year and this is exactly why I have felt so shitty.
The worst thing, however, that I had to come to terms with, was giving up on my dream to slow travel through South America. I have wanted to do this for the past few years and 2016 was supposed to be this year.
And it will not be.
When I became certain that it won’t happen this year, I basically lost all appetite for life. I became totally numb for many weeks.
It’s hard to describe that feeling, it’s so weird. I just lost all energy whatsoever. I didn’t want to go out, I felt like I don’t have any strength to talk to people and pretend I’m fine, I didn’t take photos for long months, I didn’t even feel like reading books. It was awful. I basically lost the ability to want anything. Waking up in the morning was a total nightmare, because there was literally nothing I was looking forward during the day. And the next day, and the next. When weekend would come, I would really struggle to do anything different from sitting and either admiring walls in my flat or aimlessly scrolling down the Facebook wall.
Finally, I got some serious health problems and spent months taking tests, visiting different doctors, each of the visit making the whole thing more and more frustrating and helpless. It’s not all solved yet, but it’s getting better.
But, it’s all about sinusoids, right? I gritted my teeth and decided to take the bull by its horns.
There are a few highlights of this year. I biked my ass out in the spring. I explored every nook and cranny of the neighbourhood I live in which is one of the most beautiful in Poznan. I loved long walks either with my friend, Joanna, alone, or with my boyfriend.
I felt amazing during a short but intense trip to the beautiful Lake District. It was a week spent in the nature and it felt very refreshing. Pity, it was so short.
In October, I went to Cieszyn for the 2nd Polish Travel Bloggers’ meeting. It was a kind of a breakthrough for me. I met so many different people, each of them travelling differently, at different stages of life and ages, that I felt my hope for the better days coming back to me. I came back really energised and refreshed. And made some decisions on my future that I stick to, some of the results you’ll see in the near future.
I also took my camera out of my closet and started shooting after a 10-month long break. I started pretty nice, with a trip to the city I love wholeheartedly, London. It was awesome, I came back pretty happy with my work and a card full of photos.
In the meantime, I’ve met occasionally with other travel bloggers from Poznan and, despite not so high frequency, it turned out there is a nice, like-minded group of people here.
When the days got unbearably cold and long, I went to Barcelona and spent three days in perfect sunshine. And even the sickness didn’t spoil that weekend, I basically loved every minute of it.
Finally, I’m happy I finished my challenge with reading 50 books this year.
Now, the first day of 2016 and it already feels better than the last weeks of 2015.
Travel-wise, I am not sure about the destinations yet. I know I will spend at least two, preferably three weeks on a solo journey in a place with beautiful and robust nature, far from the city crowds.
Another plan is to finally visit Armenia. This is going to be a special trip, because I will go there with my boyfriend.
And I want to spend some nice time with my sister. Let it be Poland or somewhere else.
But what is most important, I want to make out the most of my daily, Poznań-based life this year. I want to stay focused on the present, not thinking of future travels, but cherishing the moments I experience here. Cut down on Internet.
To prevent myself from falling into uncreative life, I’ve taken up a challenge of taking at least one photo each day. 1st January – check.
I also want to de-clutter my flat by getting rid of the stuff I don’t use. Anybody wants to buy some books?
I also want to see a bit of my country. My first trip this year is taking place in two weeks when I will be going to Wałbrzych. I’m going there only because I read an amazing book whose plot was based in Wałbrzych and this book doesn’t let me forget about itself. It’s “Piaskowa Góra” and its sequel “Chmurdalia” by Joanna Bator.
Finally, I want to stop being so as harsh with myself as I used to be in 2015 and learn to accept that not everything is within my control.
This might not be the most energetic and inspiring post I’ve ever written, but as we’ve explained to each other, life is not all roses all the time. But I am not giving up.
And here a surprise – first photo of me and my b-friend on this blog. ;-) With an inside joke for my Polish-speaking, observant friends.