As I have mentioned in previous posts I am a worrier. I woke up last night at 4 am (as I often do) with my brain on a tear, thinking of all the things that need to happen before we can go on our Big Trip. I tried the one thing that sometimes cools my brain down. I wrote a list of the top to-do items in my head in the hope that a promise to do them in the morning would let my brain calm down.
I'm not really happy with my job but worry about quitting and never finding anything that pays as well after our trip. I worry about how we'll manage to have health insurance while we are on the road. I start thinking pessimistically about our chances for getting sponsorship, and I figure the trip will be limited that much more by what we spend on a vehicle.
I worry and wonder and think and plan... then the world floods back in. All the nasty things that are ever present dangers in other places for other people. There was an interview with a green beret stationed in Afghanistan on the news. He is trying so hard, working at pushing an immovable object. There was footage of tragedy. An Afghan boy who was shot in the chest and struggling to breathe.
I think of all the places where peoples' worries are so much closer to the bone than the little things I carry. I feel sad and rotten for thinking I have troubles. We donate, show our support, try to be conscious of our consumption, write letters of protest... and things go on, disaster happens, people suffer... and there seems so little I can actually do.
We have had some real tragedies in the last few years. It was the seeming string of painful things that precipitated the whole idea for this Big Trip. About a year ago I said to mrs. a-go-go in a moment of frustration and despair, "Dammit, can we just sell everything, buy a teardrop trailer, and travel until we're out of money? Hell, the world is ending anyhow!" (Now don't get me wrong about my list of troubles below, I still realize they are dwarfed by the pain in so many parts of the world, but... ) My dad had died too young due to complications from amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (what used to be called Lou Gehrig's disease) and watching him come apart took a large bite out of my spirit. Both mrs. a-go-go and I had close friends fighting through cancer. Granny died at age 95 after pulling through so many previous visits to the hospital. Then, mrs. a-go-go was heart broken to at last have the hi-tech images of her reproductive organs showing the big yellow Dead End sign. Add some more worrisome health problems for other family members, and a sprinkle of feeling pointless and life has kinda been a black cloud.
None the less we managed to do a mess of traveling in 2009 and we had a good year. Our tragedies are real but they are small in the scheme of things. There will be no kidlets from our loins, but we can't linger on it forever. We are privileged to even be able to imagine making the Big Trip. I have to remember just how good we have it even if Kia and Ford ignore our asking for a car. We have fun, but we are far from happy go lucky. We cry and mourn our losses. We worry about the people whose lives truly are grim.
We gotta make this trip in spite of it all. The world may end regardless of what we do. Better eat some ice cream while we have the chance. I hope this didn't come off as self indulgent... I just felt the need unload it.