This is the face of a girl who had no clue what she was about to get herself into. March 22, 2016: with my bags packed, the car loaded, and a joyful heart in tow; I began this road trip across the country completely alone. An early spring Tuesday secretly journeying out on an extraordinary adventure that only a few folks knew about. It was an experience that forever changed my life. In 25 days I drove 7027 miles with just my VW Jetta, a tent, and the open road. I believe that you can't claim to be something unless you are actually living proof of it. I'll be damned if I ain't an adventurer! My soul believes in every ounce of nature's offerings. My heart is so full. I have so much to share with the world, and am grateful to do so.
In early 2015, I had this idea of wanting to go on an extended road trip out West to visit some key National Parks. The parks hold a special place in my heart having given me a life full of memories thus far. Part of my soul belongs to the western states, the majestic mountains, the deep red canyons, and the widest skies imaginable. Wildest dreams are born here. A power that explodes from the deepest parts of my innerself emerges, and yet there is such a sense of peace present. An awareness of belonging to something greater than just myself rises, but then I realize the greatness is already inside of me. The Universe is within me.
I've always been a nature lover. My entire life I've skied the powdered slopes of Colorado and New Mexico every year that was our vacation since I was a weething. Forget ski school, my daddy taught me with a hula hoop around my waist. I spent my childhood in Texas playing outside all of the time and my teenage years on camper trips with my family after we moved to Tennessee. Ten years ago we even went on a similar National Parks RV trip for six weeks traveling the country, but then I was too caught up in myself to be fully appreciative of my opportunity. My dad grew up in the deserts of Arizona and moved my mom from Florida out there with him after they married. So, you can see why the wanderlust was instilled in me at a young age and the spirit runs in my blood.
A trip of this magnitude alone was an overwhelming thought to begin with – and terrified my momma to death. But there was no other way I wanted to accomplish this adventure. I knew this chance would separate me from a world of chaos, give me a good three weeks spent in the quiet brain of my introverted self, and would be an unforgettable experience. All that held true as expected, but what I didn't realize is the extent of immensity that would be revealed. All the bits & pieces – the boundless discoveries of the unknown, the people I would meet along the way, the impact witnessing the Milky Way and standing in complete awe out in the middle of nowhere at 4:00 am alone – brought me to an understanding of my journey. I learned liveliness, found my place in this world, and ultimately discovered an unconditional love for every ounce of my true self.
This trip was about letting go of all expectations. Releasing what I thought should come of it and just be free, letting it come to pass as it should. I am ever so grateful for my being; the endless gratitude for my chance to live on this beautiful Earth.
I FOUND EXACTLY WHAT WAS IMPERATIVE TO MY SOUL AND HAD NO CLUE I NEEDED THIS.
I invite you to follow along as I share this project with you. See my journey through the long stretches of interstates between Tennessee and California and places I slept on the road. Read about my first time sleeping in a tent by myself in Joshua Tree National Park, ride with me up the Pacific Coast Hwy to Big Sur, and then down through Nevada. Hear details from hilarious stories to travel tips as I make my way through Utah and the final the stop in Colorado before heading back home to celebrate turning 30 and the completion of my most incredible trip to date. Join me as I seek to inspire how brilliant life can be when you live with an open heart full of love. This is my story: Recycle Love.
Hang around and you'll discover why music means to me what it does. But for now get lost in the words of John Mayer's song "The Age Of Worry" as it is rather suiting beginning this adventure.
I blasted this whole album as I embarked on my journey and headed out west with my headphones on.