Why Do We Feel the Need to "Stick It Out"?
That's me next a palm tree, a few weeks ago when my friend, A, was visiting. We had a fantastic time exploring this beautiful island. My trip to Bonaire has been amazing. From the crazy arrival and lost luggage, to all the lovely friends I made, boat trips, and exploring I got to enjoy.
But I gotta go.
I have never felt heat like this before. (Yes, I was warned, but I in normal life I love it hot so I thought I'd be ok. I was wrong.) I'm in a constant sweat. In the apartment where I'm staying, only the bedrooms are air conditioned and there's nowhere to work in them (nor a table and chair I can drag in there).
So, every morning, I slather on DEET (which as a Lyme survivor is not something I'd ever do in normal life) and sit at the kitchen table and sweat while bugs eat me alive. (That's with all the windows and doors screened in while slathered in chemicals.)
Then I get tired and my brain gets foggy from the heat and it's just super stressful to try and work that way. It would be one thing if I were having lots of fun, but at this point, the good is not outweighing the bad. I had a blast the first few weeks, but then all the friends I'd made went on vacation and I got a little bored. The island is beautiful, but small, and there's only so much snorkeling I want to do.
Then I got a sign. I'd been having a really hard time finding a place to stay for October and November. A dear friend had booked a flight to visit in October and another dear friend had booked a flight to stay in November. There just wasn't any availability that didn't look like a hostel or cost $57,000 a month (seriously - I saw one). I contacted every management company I could find. I joined Facebook rental groups. I searched airbnb and vrbo daily. Last week, I finally found a great looking place that was listed as available for October. The owner said I could see it at 10:00 on Tuesday morning. So, on Tuesday at 9:30, I was all dressed and ready to walk over there and I prayed, "Please allow me to rent this apartment for $X or less (she was asking more). Bless it or block it."
Fifteen minutes later, when I was about to walk out the door, I get an email from the owner saying she rented it to someone else. Message received. I started to cry and then I realized I couldn't stay here just because my friends had planned visits. I hoped they would understand and they did. So, I'm leaving on the 18th and heading up the east coast to see friends and family. From there, I'm going to explore traveling to writing retreats. I don't know where, but probably not the tropics. When I told my friend, H, she said, "I'm glad you didn't try and stick it out. I'm glad you decided to simply change your plan." A perk of being a digital nomad is that I get to change my plans at any time, but her comment got me thinking, why do we so often feel the need to "stick it out"? There have been so many times in my life where I tried to stick it out with a terrible boyfriend in hopes that we could get back to what it was like in the beginning. I've tried to stick it out in jobs I hated. I've also tried to stick it out in friendships that were toxic. Of course the answer is always fear. We stick it out in a terrible relationship because we're afraid of losing that person or being alone. We stay in jobs we hate because we're afraid we won't get a better job or a job with equal pay. We stay in toxic friendships due to a false feeling of obligation to that other person. I was going to stick it out because my friends had planned visits, but when I spoke with them they assured me it was fine. Because that's what real friends do. They didn't want me to stick it out and while being breakfast, lunch, and dinner for insects. Thankfully, my fear of disappointing them was just that, a fear. Nothing else. What have you stuck it out for? And what made you finally let it go?