Thoughts of a girl who wanted something else in life.
You know what? As a child I thought it would be different. Life, I mean. It was supposed to be this never-ending adventure. Life, I mean. It was supposed to be an empty coloring book, waiting to be filled by me. Life, I mean. It is not what it is today. Life, I mean.
But what is it today? Life, I mean.
Roughly speaking it is twelve hours online, eight hours asleep and four hours in-between.
Now, I don’t want to sound ungrateful. I know, what we have here is a first-world-problem. But it is exactly because of that, that I have to get this right. Because I firmly believe it is a problem that is completely in my hands to solve.
That is why for quite a while now I have been working on a plan. I didn’t actually know I was until I realized that my plan had secretly manifested itself in my daily life, in my routines and preferences, in the way I decorated my apartment – everything.
This is the plan:
I want my life to happen outdoors.
I want to chop wood and make my own fire and roast bread over the flames. I want to come back to simple joys and a life free of all the clutter society tells me I cannot live without. I don’t want to remain in this bubble where the solution to unhappiness is the buying of more and more things.
I want to walk through the woods and see wild animals and flip stones. I want to wake up with the sun and watch the world awake every morning. I want to grow trees and vegetables and cook my own soup.
I want to become a child again and ask questions about this world.
We live on planet that is orbiting around a burning ball of fire next to a moon that moves our oceans… If that is not a miracle in itself, then I don’t know what is!
But I don’t know anything about this miracle. I don’t feel like I’m even an active part of it anymore. I have become too digital. Sometimes I feel as though I’m only made out of pixels.
Back to the roots.
I’m planning to change that. In order to become part of this world again, I decided to train as a safari guide in South Africa for a year. I want to come down to earth. I mean, I could survive living in my Berlin apartment without leaving the house for weeks! Something is seriously wrong with this picture. I spend the most part of my day inside.
I don’t know where the food comes from I have in my fridge and when I happen to see a tree, it is one that has been planted by humans, not one that has been growing there on its own.
I only move my body as part of sport or exercise, not because it was necessary for any job or activity I do. I only see my neighbors when they happen to be too loud again. And apart from doves at the station or dogs on leashes I never get to see animals, not to mention wild ones.
I don’t use my hands anymore.
My legs have become lazy. My senses are numb. I feel like a dead limb attached to a body, but not actually serving any purpose. I can never get enough, but I have too much of everything.
I I guess that would be alright – if only I could be happy with this life. But I can’t.
Now, I guess I could have just gone to the nearby woods more often in order to change that. But I’m a traveler. I look for answers out there. That’s why I’m going. To challenge myself, to learn new things and to have an adventure. To remember my instincts and to tell you all about it!
Making the break.
Ever since I told others about my plan something wonderful happened: People come to me and tell me about their own secret wishes of wanting to make the break, of trying something new, of going back to the roots and just live for a while.
… What I tell them?
Let’s do this, people.
Let’s save some bees and sleep under the stars and knit clothes instead of buying them. Let’s move back to the country and build cabins and let’s become wild again.
We are more than our profile picture. We are humans with skin and hair and hearts and hands.
Let’s use them.
…And then, at the end of the day, let’s not upload proof of what we did to the blue- and-white screen.
They say that information on the internet is stored for eternity. But there is more to a memory than data and pixels. And the place where a moment is really stored for eternity has been and always will be the heart.