Updated: Sep 16, 2020
When I graduated from college, I left home to work and live in London for the summer. I never studied abroad during school (my a cappella group was too awesome), so without a job out of college, it was an experience I couldn't pass up.
I arrived there with no job, no long-term residence, no friends ... just a hostel booked for 10 days. On my first day, after checking in with the company sponsoring my work visa, I explored around, and stumbled upon a pub that featured music every night of the week. Sounded perfect. After a brief conversation with a New Zealand-born manager, I was hired. I soon after found a room to rent in a flat owned by a young investment broker. I could count on one hand the number of times I saw him. I spent the 4 months that followed working 2 jobs, traveling, and making memories of a lifetime with friends I had made.
As I write this, I am stunned at the courage and confidence it must have taken for me to travel alone to a city I'd never been. I recall being there as if it were yesterday, and I never once thought, "oh my gosh, what if I can't find a job? What if I can't find a place to live? What if I meet no friends?" I just knew in my bones I would do it and it would be epic. As if I were a superhero. To this day, it was truly one of the best times of my life.
I can't imagine taking that same journey today. Despite our world being a very different place, I too, am in a different place. I'm a version of that strong, 21-year old - but my self-confidence and courage has slowly dwindled. Over time, something in us decides to start questioning and doubting our abilities, decisions and dreams. We start to put limits on ourselves, sometimes without even knowing it. And soon, one limit turns into 20 years later, and we've stayed trapped in a small box.
I also can't begin to imagine how my mother must have felt letting her 21-year-old daughter venture out alone. As a mom of 2 kids myself now, my stomach churns at the thought! So kudos to her for empowering me to make that leap. What an example that set for me for how to be a strong woman and mom.
And sure, I'm wiser than I was at 21 ... my experience has created an expanded view on many things. But that confident, superhero is still in me ... I've learned to find her again. She is the part I trust to know the truth ... she knows I always deserve to fly.
What's your superhero wanting for you?