I’ve been living in Colorado for three years now. And that’s despite being a perpetual nomad most of my life – to the point where several friends have told me they’re shocked that I’m still here and haven’t moved on yet.
But I don’t feel a pull to move on – I feel the need to anchor in.
In climbing, a strong and safe anchor is described as SERENE: Solid, Equalized, Redundant, Efficient, No Extension.
And that’s what I’m looking for in my life now. Serenity where I am. Solidly in place. Equalized and balanced. Redundant because I have something to fall back on. Efficient at work so I can play. No extension means not overburdened with worry and fear.
So much has changed since I’ve been here, and in so many ways that I never expected.
I was going to say that three years ago, I couldn’t imagine that this is where I’d be. But then I realized that’s not true. Sure, the details are different than I imagined, and things definitely didn’t go the way I’d planned. But the life I’m living now is very much like what I dreamed of when I bought a one-way ticket to Denver and got on a plane three years ago.
I spend as much time as I can climbing and adventuring in so many amazing places. I used to love traveling in a different way, jumping on a plane at the last minute, flying to see a new city, on my own, meeting new people and making new friends along the way. But in the past few years, my idea of travel has transformed into road trips to outdoor places with groups of friends. Neon lights have been replaced by starlight, and nights at a bar have been turned into nights passing a flask around a campfire. I’m still exploring, but in a way that makes sense for me now.
I do fulfilling work with a flexible schedule. I’ve finally found my footing as a freelance outdoor writer, and I connect with people, particularly women, to help them experience their own outdoor adventures. After a big career change, starting over made me feel like a beginner again, but it was worth it to do work that aligns with who I am and what I value.
I’m not a big planner, and that hasn’t changed. But one thing I’ve learned over the years is that things take the time they take. Head in the direction of what you want, and you’ll get there eventually. But you might end up doing more bushwhacking than you expect along the way.
Now I’m where I want to be. And I know that you can’t predict the future, but I hope to be here for awhile. So I’ll make sure my anchor can handle the forces of change and keep me solidly in place, no matter what comes my way.