Blazing A Trail (of sorts)
We are weird, I mean we are actually weird. We are the kind of people that give other people something to talk about. We don’t do what we do to impress others. We do what we do because we want to, or believe that it is right, or some combination of the two. From having 9 children (all born at home), homeschooling, hand milking a cow, delivering babies (human and animal), not watching tv, butchering our own livestock and game, brewing beer and wine, making cheese, reloading bullets, constantly learning, or “retiring” at 40. We have always wanted to be trailblazers, but we weren’t sure whether there were any trails left to blaze, and in some ways there isn’t. You know, nothing new under the sun and all. I’m left pondering whether living a brave life that challenges the status quo can be considered a “new” thing, even though many brave souls have gone before us. Well I think it’s worth a shot. We could have continued down a stable and predictable path, but what kind of story would that be? When the tale is told, I want it to be an amazing adventure that changes people’s lives for the better and sparks desire in the hearts of those who hear it. It is not just adventure for adventure’s sake. It is a call to the masses to stop and look around, to think about that long lost dream that is so deeply buried under fear, loss, obligation, disappointment, discouragement, depression, grief etc. that they can’t even remember there was a dream there. My hope is that seeing someone do the things “everyone” says they want to do might help them remember.
I was talking to a friend the other day, telling him about our plans to leave the rat race and travel through Central America. I could see the excitement in his face when I was talking. He told me about a short camping trip he and his family were taking, and how his wife had wanted to go for an extra day, but he told her he needed to get back to work on Monday, so they couldn’t stay an extra day. During our conversation he told me about their situation and that he was reconsidering his decision to come back early. Fast forward a few weeks and he was telling me about their amazing trip and how the extra day was just what they needed. He also told me about how he was trying to figure out how he could spend more time with his family. That is exactly what I’m talking about. It makes me smile just thinking about it. He didn’t have to do some amazing, difficult thing, just a small step towards a dream. While what we are doing may sound extreme, that is part of the beauty of it. If we can drop everything and go on a year long journey with 11 people, what could you achieve if you were willing to step out of what is normal and comfortable, and do something you haven’t thought you could do? What is the dream locked up inside of you? If you had 100 million dollars and no responsibilities (neither situation is true for us) what would you do? What are the things about that dream that make you want to do it? Is there a smaller version of that dream you can actually do in your current situation?
At the time of this writing I don’t know how it will turn out, but I am really looking forward to this journey. You know what else I am looking forward to? Being present, being available to my family that has waited, mostly patiently, while I made my long commute and worked many long days, looking at my phone instead of my family, the phone calls at night, leaving my daughter’s birthday party because something was broken at work, and all the things that go with supporting a 24/7 manufacturing process. I want to be right where I am at this moment, with the people I love. There is no manual for what we are doing, but it does seem to be coming together and we look forward to including you to the best of our ability, and as long as it doesn’t get in the way of the “present.”