I’m drawn to the idea of being a digital beach nomad of sorts; travelling, exploring, and having the freedom to operate my business from anywhere with WiFi. My first solo travel was when I headed off to Europe with a backpack at age 18. Now that I’m married and have become a mom, almost thirty years later, that adventurous and curious eighteen year old seems long gone most days.
But honestly, she’s still here. She’s just buried under schedules and to-do lists and perceptions of restriction.
There seems to be plenty of younger, single women choosing to work and travel solo these days. Couples and families are choosing more flexible and adventurous lifestyles this way too. That’s why The Four Hour Work Week and businesses like Smart Passive Income, The Art of Non-Conformity, The Uncaged Life, Free Range Humans, Screw the Cubicle, and The Suitcase Entrepreneur are so popular.
But what about the middle-aged wives and moms whose family members are happily doing their own things (or have schedules that rarely coordinate)? Where do we fit in the mix?
We should honour and support our loved ones, yes. But in doing so, are we to brush our adventurous and independent selves aside in exchange for our commitment to our families? To the roles we play?
I’m not burying myself at the bottom of the list this time – I’m taking my turn.
I am a wife & mom & solopreneur who will be travelling solo to honour the soul of ME.
It’s part of my own commitment this year to be more Brave, Seen & True.
Plane tickets are purchased. Accommodations are booked. It’s a step toward a desire.
This deep need has surfaced before. The first time I travelled without my family was on a group sailing trip in the British Virgin Islands. Other sailing trips followed, as well as an off-grid property sitting gig in the Baja. Most of the time I flew on my own, but I always joined up with other women (most I had never met) for the trip. That scenario felt like a stretch and also provided enough of a comfort zone to allow me to say “yes”.
This year I’m going fully solo. That’s because I’m listening to my inner voice that says, “Allow yourself to move to your own rhythm.”
The introvert preference in me is to seek quiet, solitude, time, and space for creative energy to flow. It’s a retreat from everyday life, routines, and comforts to learn more about myself and also to fill up my energy reserves. I can’t wait to indulge in the quiet meditation of beach combing along the Caribbean. And I look forward to following my own inner clock, being open to go with the flow.
If, like me, you’ve chosen this month as a time to focus on being more TRUE, here are some questions (from the Proust Questionnaire) that you might choose to reflect on (it’s how I arrived at my decision to book my flight for solo travel to Isla Mujeres):
- What is your greatest extravagance?
- What is your idea of perfect happiness?
- What is your greatest fear?
- What is your favorite journey?
- What is it that you most dislike?
- When and where were you happiest?
And I’ll add two more:
- What does it mean to be a “good” mom?
- How does a supportive wife (or life partner) behave?
Be True…free yourself…and feed your soul. Share this post with a woman who comes to mind.
Exploring solo travel and wonder what other women are recommending for travel essentials? Come check out (and save) my Pinterest board.
8 thoughts on “Solo Travel Feeds the Soul of an Introvert Mom”
Marla, this has made me stop and think. I have never traveled alone. Day trips, yes. Trips away from family, no problem but always with a girlfriend. I remember the first time I went to the movie alone – I was in my 40’s. I love spending time alone but if I went away alone it would be to my weekend house. Not very adventuresome. I’ll going to have to think – am I holding myself back – or do I just prefer to travel with a companion. Enjoy your trip!
Only one way to find out Diane 🙂 You don’t have to head off to Mexico alone like I am…choose a location you’ve wanted to go that feels just on the edge of your comfort zone. Or maybe it’s more about staying in a familiar location but a different type of accommodation than you’ve done before (like AirBnB, house/pet sitting, or some other creative option). It’s all an experiment. Next on my radar is Belize, Honduras, Ecuador! House Hunters International on HGTV is my inspiration 🙂
This is an amazing and truly brave exploration. Not so much for the physical act of traveling solo, but because of what it means to leave everyone and everything behind – especially as a mom. Good for you that you take the time for yourself and that you know that being a good mom is more than being physically there. Take the time to nourish yourself so you can be emotionally there too! Bon Voyage!
Thanks for your comment Jessica. As you well know through the work you do, it’s the inner work that often requires the most courage 🙂
I love solo travel! A 20 year career in the travel industry schlepping all over the world gave me the confidence to go pretty much anywhere on my own. In fact I’m planning a 3 week “solo” road trip this fall and I am SO excited I can hardly wait to feed my wanderlust nature. 🙂
I can totally relate to that wanderlust Marty. Happy adventuring and thanks for sharing!
The questions you use at the end of your post are terrific – forwarding to my gal pals for a group gab-fest!
Thanks Kimba and I’m sure that will be an interesting conversation! Perhaps we’ll end up reading about some of it in The Middle-Aged Cheap Seats 🙂
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