Thursday 1 September 2016

anxiety, anticipation & adventuring.

It's September! 

Despite being out of education longer than I care to state, I still get those back to school feelings every year. Not the full-of-dread kind, but the oooh-new-stationery kind, and the this-early-morning-feels-a-little-chillier kind. The kind where you're full of excitement (and a little anxiety) about the new uniform, the new friends you might make, and all the opportunity laid out in front of you.

Unfortunately, I'm not actually buying any stationery, and there are no crisp white blouses over here.

September IS however, a pretty big month for me. I am still full of that anticipation. 

This month sees me clambering onto a plane on my lonesome, and heading across the pond. I've wanted to visit Canada for at least half my life, so I'm getting on and doing it. What's the point in trying to find someone who wants to do the exact same trip as you, and then waiting around for them to be able to afford it or book it off work? 

Nah, as much as I love adventures with my friends, this one is mine. 

Luckily for me, I have a friend in Ottawa, so that's where I'll be starting my adventure. I thought I'd ease myself in by having someone who can show me around, keep me company in my first new place, and is there if I need anything. 

From then I'll be heading out on my own, first stop Toronto, then crossing the border to New York. 

Little old me, on my own, all the way over there. Can you believe it?! I can't, not really. As with all holidays, it doesn't really feel real until your plane is landing. In fact, I exclaimed to myself the other day with a big grin, "I'm going to Canada & New York!"

You might be thinking, "what's the big deal? People do that all the time." and you're right. People do. But I don't. I play it safe. I don't take risks. I stay in my bubble. 

Well, at least I used to. If you're a long time follower of my blog, you'll know about my struggles with anxiety. 

I used to be so crippled by it that I could barely leave the house on my own, let alone go into a shop, a bank, a doctor's surgery. I'd get so anxious that numbers and times just became jumbled up symbols that meant absolutely nothing to me. I'd get to train stations an hour+ early, because travelling triggered some weird thoughts and feelings. 

And now I've budgeted & saved, booked flights, accommodation, everything by myself. I'm going to the airports and getting on the planes by myself. I'm travelling from the airports to where I'm staying by myself

I need to live more. DO more. See more. I feel so disconnected from things a lot of the time. 

But boy, it's feeling so good to challenge myself and treat myself to something that I've wanted for so long.

I already have lists longer than my arms and legs, but if you have any recommendations for Ottawa, Toronto, New York or anywhere nearby, please leave me a comment! 

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  1. Wow I'm so envious of your upcoming trips to Canada and New York, they're two places I've always wanted to visit too. I'm far too anxious to travel alone, but it's so amazing that you are. Maybe one day I'll do the same. I hope you have a lovely time!
    - Emily from ♡

  2. How exciting Lyzi! So blooming proud of you too, you'll ace these travels. Solo travel is absolutely worth it, I was riddled with anxiety and guilt(?!) when I first holidayed alone but the rewards are so worth it and I've conquered two of my transport anxiety triggers this summer alone! x

  3. Hello Lyzi. Well done you for taking on this adventure. I finally gave up waiting for company to take a trip to Tuscany, Italy and went by on my own. I joined a tour group in my case, and had the time of my life. I'm so glad I didn't miss out on this travel adventure. I know you will have an amazing time on your trip. Congratulations on making it happen. Enjoy. Cheers, Ardith

  4. That's so exciting, I'm so happy for you! Congrats on making your dreams happen! I'm actually in a similar situation myself and am currently trying to be brave and in the midst of booking a solo trip to Japan. I think I'll actually be a little less anxious travelling alone, as it means I don't have to worry about what anyone else wants to do and can be completely selfish.

  5. Congrats for this adventure! :) And what a nice post. I know what you feel because I feel the same. I'm anxious too. I don't take risks and I don't like to do things alone. I never travel alone. I'm trying to work on these problems but it's sometimes really hard.
    I'm super happy for you and I can't wait to read your posts about these trips! :)

  6. So proud of you! Have an amazing time. Solo travel is glorious - you get to do all the little things YOU want to do, and loads of time to think and imagine and learn. It can feel lonely at times, but as you get more comfortable in the place you're in then it gets easier to talk to new people and have meaningful conversations with near-strangers! Looking forward to hearing about all your adventures :)

  7. i hope you have a fab time on your trips! solo travelling would make me pretty nervous too but people seem to do it all the time! best of luck

    Hannah at Hannah Venables / A CREATIVE LIFESTYLE BLOG

  8. I'm glad to have strolled along this post :) I've always fancied solo travelling but have been going through issues with anxiety over the past couple of years, so it's always comforting (?) knowing others do too. Hope you enjoy your trip!
    Life inside the Locket

  9. I think organising, booking and travelling alone is an achievement enough in itself for anyone but for someone who's battled severe anxiety, it's just incredible and something to be massively proud of. I hope you have an amazing time and I can't wait to read about your adventures! x

  10. This is so exciting! I know what you mean about September and new stationary and I totally get travelling alone because sometimes it just has to be done. I wish you every good thought for your time in Canada and New York, travelling alone is such a big jump but also, so worth it :)

    erin | words and pictures

  11. That is SO exciting! I've been thinking a lot lately about booking a solo trip, but I just don't think I'm ready for it just yet. Hopefully one day though! I'm sure you'll have the most amazing time over there - I'm SO jealous!
    xo April | April Everyday

  12. Well done for pushing yourself, Lyzi! It'll be totally worth it. My boyfriend and I drove from Toronto to New York this summer - my main Toronto recommendation would be Bang Bang Ice Cream, and a day (or at least an afternoon) of exploring Toronto Island Parks :) have fun! xx vix

  13. I hope you have an absolutely amazing time my dear - and good on you for just doing it! I keep putting off getting my passport redone, even though I said to myself I wanted to go places, photograph them and my life for me a bit more. Yet it's not happened.

    Maybe I need to actually get my butt in gear and do it.

    Meg | Elmpetra

  14. How exciting! I hope you have an absolutely wonderful time. Solo travel was the scariest thing I've ever done, but gosh it was the best decision I've ever made.
    Just a little note if you ever find NYC overwhelming at any point in your trip, remedy any nerves by heading to Central Park. It's a whole other world away from the busy city and the calm washes over you as soon as you enter.
    Have fun! Can't wait to see what you get up to :)


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