Her Reasons for Living in a Van & Traveling the US for a Year


“Life is found in the dance between your deepest desire and your greatest fear.” Tony Robbins

My dad died in a car train accident when I was 10 years old. From that point on, I was raised by my very protective grandmother and mother who instilled fear in me on a daily basis. “Don’t climb that tree Lori, you might hurt yourself”, or “Don’t ride a bicycle Lori, you might fall off." Year after year, as my family members passed away in premature, tragic and accidental ways, it validated for me that fear was the only way I could be safe. In 2006 my mother was murdered in a home invasion, and my world was crushed. A sense of safety became even more paramount, and I found great comfort in routine. As a result, my life has become quite monotonous. Doing the same thing every day! Seeing the same people! Driving down the same road!

I have a great life, and feel very blessed. I have a good marriage, a job I love, a roof over my head, my health, and my family. I have nothing to complain about, but…something is missing. When my husband proposed the idea of leaving Connecticut to find a new place to live, I was riddled with fear and excitement. I didn’t realize I could feel both emotions at the same time. After researching states to live in, I soon realized there was no way to determine where to live without actually being there. It was my idea to drive across the country for a year in a van to find a new home, and I was very shocked when the idea came out of my mouth. Seconds later, my husband jumped on board, and therein laid the plans for our future.

I know I will be sacrificing the safety and security of having a traditional life, but the adventure, freedom, and experiences that lie ahead ignites the fiery redhead within me. America is so beautiful, and I have only seen a fraction of my country. I want to be immersed in culture, and have chance encounters with interesting people from all walks of life. I know the journey itself will be more important than reaching my unknown destination. There will certainly be challenging times. Once I face them, I will be more apt to say, “ok what’s next”. I have come to realize, if I don’t face my fears, they will continue to control me. My sheltered, comfortable life is about to get a whole lot more interesting. BRING IT ON!

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