Our society is a place that pushes us to conform to a mold. To go to school, to find success by living the life of a 9-5 job, always trying to reach the top of the social ladder, to build a family and raise more children to follow in our footsteps; but what happens when you don’t want to conform to these ideals? We were not born to work, pay bills, and die. We’re fortunate enough to live in a generation where more people are breaking from these standards and finding their own way to live; and isn’t part of living seeing the world? Connecting with nature and other humans? Finding yourself and what truly brings you happiness? This is where my journey starts. Success is not my drive in life, happiness is.
Happiness, such a broad term. As a college student in my final year, I can list many things that make me happy: Class being canceled, getting drinks with my friends to celebrate class being canceled which then leads to tacos. Finding matching socks. Being late for the bus, but still managing to catch it. Getting off work early. Clean laundry. Drinks to celebrate clean laundry. But when I really think about what truly brings me happiness, its connecting with other people, and where I find the best place to let go of social standards, fears, and find the ability to truly be free, is in the wilderness.
For example, only last month I went on a spring break backpacking trip with a club through my university. I applied for the trip over email and nervously waited to be accepted. It was Sunday night at 9:30pm when I received the email, “Pack your chacos mothafuckas, we’re going!!”. I was jumping for joy with a mop in my hand in the kitchen that I work in. A few minutes later it set in, I was going to Utah for a week with ten other people I had never met, and once again I was nervous. Long story short, the first day was a little awkward, but that was expected. By our third day we were gallivanting through the Escalante River splashing one another and playing in ‘quick sand’ (which is really not all that quick). There’s something about nature that can make ten best friends out of strangers
These sorts of trips and experiences are where I really find myself, and where I really want to be. Exploring, playing, connecting. With myself, new friends, and nature.