One Thousand, One Hundred Fifty-Three Days Ago

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I packed my bags and one-way ticket and left the Midwest for the Big Apple. With no real plan, or even remotely accurate idea of what I was getting myself into, the things I would experience over the next three years would be some of the most beautifully transformative of my existence thus far — meeting the love of my life and countless other inspiring and irreplaceable people, landing my dream job, traveling to far corners of the world I never thought I'd witness in person, taking part in a myriad of crazy situations I couldn’t have conjured up in my wildest dreams, going through some of my most challenging personal struggles yet but coming out of them with a newfound sense of understanding and clarity. I couldn’t be any more grateful for my time here, and though it’s not always the easiest place to live, I wouldn’t change my decision to relocate to this incredible city for anything. This photo is the first taken of me being a tourist in the place I now call home.

All that said, sometimes a person still needs a bit of a shakeup that can’t be accomplished by staying in one spot. It’s become clear that now is the time for me to be a tourist somewhere else — to hit the “reset” button on my current perspectives and ways of life, and to embark on another type of transformative experience all it’s own. That’s why I’ve decided to take a break from the hustle and bustle of big city life and explore a few corners of the world that I have yet to discover. My six-month journey starts on November 17th, beginning in the Philippines and then on to Indonesia, Cambodia, Myanmar, India, and Nepal — though all plans are flexible. If anyone in my digital friend circle will be out that way between November and May, knows someone who will be, has been and has tips, or would just like to offer some advice on life or travel, I’m all ears. I’m traveling mostly solo and am new to all of these places, so any insight is massively appreciated — sending heaps and heaps of gratitude in advance! x