Friday, July 19, 2013

A Vulnerable Tale

Hey there Nomad friends!

So, it’s been a while, remember me? I have to admit I kind of fell off the blog train, although I have to say, at least it wasn’t off the boat!

I can give a million and 1 excuses of why I didn’t write, there is a reason my mom calls me Scarlett O’Hara, but in the end it doesn’t matter. I just didn’t write. However, this isn’t a wahh party.

This is, dare I say, a re-awakening?

I watched a Ted Talks the other day that struck home for me. Brené Brown’s: The Power of Vulnerability was one of those talks that made me realize that perhaps the reason I hadn’t blogged in so long was that I was afraid to say how I felt.

I wanted to be brave. To say that living aboard in Maine, in the winter, didn’t absolutely suck at times. I wanted to put on the “See I told you so!” front so when my family and friends, who already thought it was a crazy idea asked me how it was, I would respond with “Great! Just how I knew it would be”. But that just isn’t the truth. It was hard at times and I struggled.

The transition to living without things that we took for granted in our old life, compounded by icy rain that lashed at your face every time you left the boat, at times felt like it was too much bare. Not having running water, bathrooms and showers 2 feet away, a stove, a fridge, a closet for all my clothes....the list is endless. Comforts of an old life screamed in my face as I nestled in next to the heater, knees to my chest while my inner voice demanded, “What the hell were you thinking!!”

Sometimes I was angry, sometimes I was sad, and sometimes I was perfectly fine and laughed at my worries. Nick and I would drink wine by candle light (yes we did have electricity) playing wine wars and listening to the wind howling outside. Later being lulled to sleep by the gentle rocking.

However, I was afraid of being vulnerable. Of saying, Man this sucks right now! But it’s OK that it sucks. Because sometimes life sucks, right? You have to get through these sucky times to figure it out, to relearn, to find meaning, to break away from mundane ‘I know what’s coming so I will keep walking forward instead of exploring and finding out what life is all about’ way of life.

When I step back and look around, so many people are going through struggles just like me, except theirs wasn’t a boat. It was other parts of life. Sometimes life just gets you down, shakes you to your bare bones and makes you to really look at yourself, and if you choose to be vulnerable, to move on.

I am proud of Nick and I for doing what we did. We chose to step off the beaten path and explore another way of life. We learned we don’t need daily comforts to be happy, those things don’t make happiness, happiness comes from within.

I am proud of myself for surviving winter aboard, and I am proud of Nick for surviving me! Trust me, the man deserves an award.

Our relationship aboard a 30’ sailboat in Portland, Maine survived the chilliest days just as it will survive the warmest.

At the end of the day, it’s not about just sharing when things are great and life is good. That’s the easy stuff. It’s about sharing our struggles so that maybe someone else can take a look and say “Oh thank you! I’m not alone, you feel that way too!” And know that it is ok to feel that way, that people understand and that people are rooting you on and not waiting for you to fail.

So, today I write to you all and say, it’s ok to be vulnerable. I have your back and I know many people have mine. So let’s do something awesome and not be afraid to fail.



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