Holidays are coming up, and for months I have been planning a 4 week trip around Victoria and South Australia. This is something I used to do with my eyes closed. I would travel, taking photos everywhere I went and really enjoying the scenery, meeting new people and going to places that others haven’t even heard of.
I have driven from Sydney to Cairns, to Melbourne, all around Tasmania and have even ridden a motorcycle from Sydney to Perth. This trip should be a piece of cake for me.
I have a purpose to my trip; to photograph endangered species of Australian Native Birds, so I can then paint or do a pastel of them. Then sell them and donate some of the proceeds to Australian Geographic. I have planned to go in the height of summer, when it is warm in Sydney but a little cooler down south. The birds like the cooler regions too. I have planned to go to Chiltern in Victoria where there is a large bird sanctuary.
But, all the travel I had done previously was when I was mentally well. Now I suffer, and I do mean suffer, from depression, anxiety, and agoraphobia. Some days I find it difficult to get out of bed let alone out of the city which I feel comfortable in. I have not spent a night out of my own bed in the last 5 or so years.
So, baby steps, baby steps, I guess. Lets try for a week or two this January. Perhaps going to stay with people I know, or go to places familiar to me. Then, next semester break I might feel comfortable to go further, until at the end of my University course, I could then travel around Australia as I intend.
Traveling can be a lonely scary road, and I am such a social person. It might seem a contradiction, saying I am social but yet some days I cant get out of my bed. I am constantly in contact with friends by telephone and internet, and they make sure I get out occasionally, even if only for a coffee or meal in a quiet restaurant. If I have obligations, I tend to meet them. However the number of times I have said yes, I would be to social events, only to find when the time comes I cant do it… you would be surprised.
Oh well, press on.
I write this for its therapeutic value, not only for myself but for others who may be suffering and may benefit from reading; feeling they are not alone in their struggle.