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…
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.
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).
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.