I haven’t updated my blog in like a month. It’s bad. Reading this, other bloggers will think it’s bad for traffic, SEO, stuff like that. But I am not even thinking of this.
It’s bad because by staying away from my blog I neglected a part of my life that I like, the smartest thing I have ever created (or maybe the only thing), and something that always made me feel good and productive.
I never blogged for the business, for the money, for the free trips. It’s always been something I did with pleasure, because I like it, because it’s my way of expressing myself. I always needed it. That’s why I don’t have a schedule with my posts, I don’t like deadlines, I reply emails too late and turn off many affiliation/advertising opportunities. I didn’t start my blog for this.
And at the same time that’s why it’s hard for me to keep blogging when I am not ok. If this was a business, you wouldn’t notice anything. But since it’s more an expression of me, then I can’t keep blogging about fun stuff to do around the world when I am the first one who’s not in the mood of doing anything. So I remain silent.
Does a travel blogger always have to be happy?
Because we write about travel, which is a pleasure of life. So we must be happy people. All the time. But this is not my case. And people ask me how can you not be happy when you travel so much in your life? And then it feels like it’s inappropriate for someone who’s seen as a lucky and happy person by everyone to complain. So I felt guilty, and didn’t complain. I didn’t say anything to anyone.
Since my accident in Egypt things have changed for me. I started suffering from panic attacks and anxiety, ok you already know this. I struggled and I felt better, I traveled, I went to Iceland and to Egypt, and I was having ups and downs but I’ve always been optimistic. Now I have to say I am really tired. I won’t go into details, but some days are really bad.
A couple of weeks ago I read a travel blogger, Anita Mac, committed suicide. I didn’t personally know her and I haven’t commented on the topic so far, even if I did read all the related posts that were shared in those days. And while my silence on the topic may have looked as indifference, reality is that I was deeply touched by it. Maybe more touched than others. Why? Because I felt involved. I immediately thought I could be next. And it made me think a lot.
Travel bloggers are lucky, because most of them get to see the world and for sure they chose a lifestyle they like. But this doesn’t mean they don’t have problems. Well this is pretty obvious, but what I mean is that they don’t have a space to be sad, or a space to complain. Because they see beautiful things they are expected to be happy and smiling all the time. They are the ones with interesting stories to tell, the ones that inspire others. They are other people’s anti-depressants.
Nobody wants to read “ok, I am in front of the Pyramids but I don’t feel anything”… right? It would be outrageous. Hence, “awesome”, “amazing”, etc. And because I don’t like to lie, I prefer not to post any update, rather than posting happy ones when I don’t feel like it. Call me stupid, but call me loyal too. You will never read anything that I don’t think on my blog and social media accounts.
So I’ve been at home for almost a year, and it’s been a very dark one. Given that I don’t feel ok here, I started doubting I could feel comfortable anywhere else. Here I have all the comforts, free accommodation (my mother’s place), great food, my friends and all. But I am not happy.
Maybe it’s also because I have seen so much beauty before, that I can’t find it in “normality” again? The other day I went to the planetarium here in my city. It’s such a small one. And while I heard people going “wow” when the software started the projection, I felt nothing, instead I had a flashback of me and my friend Lella in the huge planetarium on the Odaiba Island in Tokyo.
Did I get too much from life already? Was this all premature? Did I reach the limit of happiness? If I slept under the stars in Jordan, how can I feel excited about a night out at the pub?
Add anxiety, a couple of OCD symptms, and a broken heart, and there you have it – the D word.
Lately I think I understood that staying at home is not helping. I finally remembered that I never felt comfortable in this place, even years before starting my extensive travels. Also, I realized I haven’t traveled since May, when I came back from Egypt… and even then, I went to Cairo just to pick up all my stuff and leave for good. So it was not a really happy trip.
I figured out I need to travel again, even if the thought of it scares me at the moment, there I said it. So here is the happiest part of this post. I have travel plans! I will share them with you in the next few days.
Thanks for reading.
Depression manifests itself in may ways. Sometimes in many ways for just one person. Travel has helped me get over a personal tragedy that I did not want to get over. I just wanted to end my life. Then I made a travel bucket list with a purpose. Things and places I always wanted to see. I always have my next destination planned. I keep adding to the list, just to stay interested in life.
I do not monetize my blog, just because I am an amateur. The root of the word amateur is doing something for love.