Anywhere But Here

Have you ever had that nagging feeling that you want/need/must go somewhere/anywhere and that if you don’t you just might have one of these moments:

I call it the “anywhere-but-here” syndrome. And I, ladies and gentlemen, have it bad. I always have. I can say that there have been brief periods of remission, but then just as I get somewhat content in where I am, it flares up again and I feel like my wanderlust is ruling my life. Even as a child I had a wandering heart; I dreamed of the day I would be able to be wherever I wanted whenever I wanted. Oh the joys and naiveté of youth…

Huntington Beach, California, Sunset, Ocean

Usually I can keep it at bay through small changes – a new apartment, a weekend trip, a bigger trip. I completed all of the above last year and barely made it through the year. This anywhere-but-here flare has hit with a vengeance.

I have been based in Phoenix, Arizona for 5 ½ years now – longer than I have stayed in any one place since I left my dad’s house. I really loved it when I first got here, and it’s not that I don’t love this city now. But like any relationship, sometimes love runs its course and although I love Phoenix, I’m not in love with Phoenix anymore. The anywhere-but-here has crept back into my thoughts as it usually does – gradually then suddenly.

Grand Canyon, Arizona, Sunset

The problem? Life is so much harder to uproot these days – I have a lease, a job, friends, and a few people I seriously consider family.  I have loans that must be paid and responsibilities that must be handled. The thing about anywhere-but-here is that after a while I don’t care about any of these things. All things can be shifted around to accommodate change. I don’t know if that’s a good lesson to have learned, at least not in relation to this particular issue.

The tempering factor this time around revolves mostly around fear. Fear of the consequences (which I have learned all too well during previous moves) and fear that if I can’t make something this stable work, I’ll never find peace no matter where I go. If I move now, it will be one of the most difficult breaks I’ve ever had to deal with – but I’m beginning to care less and less. Change is coming, for better or for worse, and I grow increasingly excited about the possibilities (smile).

Scotland, Sunset, Tree

Beyond the east the sunrise; Beyond the west the sea
And East and West the Wander-Thirst that will not let me be;
It works in me like madness to bid me say goodbye,
For the seas call, and the stars call, and oh! The call of the sky!

I know not where the white road runs, nor what the blue hills are,
But a man can have the sun for friend, and for his guide, a star;
And there’s no end to voyaging when once the voice is heard,
For the rivers call, and the road calls, and oh! The call of a bird!

Yonder the long horizon lies, and there by night and day
The old ships draw to home again, the young ships sail away
And come I may, but go I must, and if men ask you why,
You may put the blame on the stars and the sun,
And the white road and the sky.

~Gerald Gould

7 thoughts on “Anywhere But Here

  1. You are able to surely see your excitement within the pieces you write. The world hopes for a lot more passionate bloggers like you who aren’t afraid to say how they feel. Always follow your heart.


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  4. Boy, do I know what you’re talking about! At one time, I … just for fun … tried to make up a list of all postal addresses I’d lived on. I gave up! I did like you, changed apartment when I couldn’t move elsewhere.

    Have you ever asked yourself why it is this way? I have, and never found an answer.

    I’ve been in this country now for ten years, and in this city for five.

    I think this is why I’ve moved blog so many times 🙂


    • I’ve actually had the misfortune of having to list every single address I’ve had in the last 10 years – it was a nightmare! I actually keep a running list now just in case that ever comes up again (it’s a little ridiculous btw).
      Just like you, I ask myself “why” all the time, but I have no answer. There’s just something in me that must go. It’s inconvenient at times, but it certainly keeps life interesting, right? 😉


    • Thank you! I’m glad you liked the poem, it’s one of my favorites. I think I had a few tears in my eyes when I first read it and even now I still get chills. It just encapsulates the feeling so well. It really is a comfort to know I’m not alone in this feeling and I appreciate the feedback 🙂


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