If you followed along my stories in the last year, you might have noticed for a while I had a count on what day it was in relation to our year off.
It was a personal challenge. Partly because I worried our year would pass without much to show for it but mostly to push ourselves to explore and not just get complacent doing nothing.
When we decided to take a year off I was actually pretty unsure how it would unfold. Elena couldn't be in the car seat for more than a few minutes before turning purple from crying yet we hoped to drive around 20,000km while living in a van.
She had caught frost bite in early January last year and because of it, we spent most of the weeks leading up to our travels not leaving the house with her. The idea of moving from place to place each day and night sounded impossible, almost laughably so. I was convinced we wouldn't manage to take her international without serious pre planning, by now we know we can show up with nothing arranged.
Being stuck inside with a newborn for an entire month feels oddly lonely at times, and the worry of losing my passion for travel and adventure was never far from my mind. Somehow I decided that keeping an online diary of our daily adventures would prevent me from becoming what I feared: complacent.
After around 200 days of travel, I stopped keeping track of it all. My personal challenge started feeling more like a chore or a competition and really, there should be no winning and losing measurements in life. Some days are epic, some are kind of dull.
We have spent over 260 days exploring. And for the last 28 doing not much more than eating, visiting, and going for neighborhood strolls while dreaming of how our lives will be when we return home.
We booked tickets to Mexico and the same day we found out our tenants want to leave a month early. Oddly, we cheered more at the thought of returning home. Routines and familiarity have become what we crave.
It is safe to say we have not squandered our year off. It's also safe to say we aren't as scared of doing nothing. I know I haven't lost myself to parenthood, just changed a little.
289 days in. 50 ish to go.