create a life you love

something that I've been trying to live by this past year and change is this: create a life you love.

it's easier said than done. I had to let go of a lot of pre-concieved notions to get to where I am. heck, I had to travel halfway across the world. but I feel like I'm finally in a place where I'm happy, things make sense, and I love my life.

I don't love every single thing and every single minute. I've created a lot of good, but there are downsides to our situation. and sometimes, just like everyone else, I get down on myself.

part of it comes from the expectations that others [and myself, as well] have placed on my life. I am twenty-nine years old. I am married, but I don't have a house or children. I don't even have a career anymore. I gave up my car and my stainless steel kitchen and my reliable income to Taiwan, of all places.

sometimes it feels like I'm crazy to have done this.

but then I think of everything else I've done with my life. I've traveled the world. I've seen ancient wonders and modern marvels. I've altered my perspective, and grown by leaps and bounds through this experience. I've written a 55,000 word travel memoir. [in serious need of editing and fleshing out, but still.]

and if I start to feel less than accomplished, I flip back through my journals or this blog. I read all your supportive comments and emails. I look at how I've changed and where I've been. I made an entire list of how I was awesome in 2013 so I wouldn't forget.

my life certainly doesn't look like the traditional model of success, or maybe not even close to your idea of a fulfilling existence. but [no offense] my life isn't about what you or anyone else thinks. the value of my experiences is measured by my own standard. and to me... having people to love who love and support me,  the space to grow and to explore my creativity, and the freedom to take this time away from financial responsibility. to me, that's just plain awesome.

even though my life is different from most of the people I know, it can still be hard not to compare. I'm an expat in Taiwan. not Paris, or London. I can't jet off to Rome for the weekend and this week I found 3 cockroaches in my apartment in the span of 48 hours. one of which was hanging out 6 inches from where I lay my head at night. I don't have a 9 to 5 job or car or a house with a yard and a dog or a white picket fence.

but I do have xiao long bao. a scooter that costs me $4 a week in gas. friends who I run into at Starbucks and have an impromptu 3 hour coffee date with. I have art, and laughter, and helmet hair. I have silly self-photoshoots in pajamas and Husband's sunglasses. I have dragons, and mountains, and enough money to travel.

I guess I'm just writing this to say: no matter what your life looks like, if it's a life you love then that's ok. and if your life isn't one you love? change it.

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