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The Truth About Going Home

Puerto-Viejo

 

Did you know

that even if you fly home

return to your old job

fall into old relationships

and live out the old patterns that you thought you unlearned

you can never go back.

 

Ever.

 

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You can never go back.

You can never go back.

Seriously… you can never go back.

Even if you tried.

 

Ultimate Guide to Puerto Viejo - 031

 

But I know it can feel like you already have.

I know that feeling well.

 

Puerto-Viejo

 

That feeling that the new you

that you worked so hard to become

has somehow returned to the old you

that you worked so hard to unlearn.

 

It’s terrifying.

 

Seattle - 006

 

I have felt that fear so many times over the years when I’ve gone back to the USA after traveling.

 

When I have a harder time feeling relaxed.

When I have a harder time feeling joyful.

When I have a harder time feeling free.

When I have a harder time doing the things that I know make me feel good.

 

Pacific Northwest

 

I get into my patterns of overworking and stressing, feeling disconnected from nature and my body, and falling into family dramas.

 

And every time I ask myself…

“Am I really the person I thought I was?”

“When can I run away again?”

“Did I actually grow at all?”

 

Laos

 

Then there are the times when that fear follows me out on the road. I feel trapped despite my physical freedom. It startles me and confuses me to the core.

 

When I arrive somewhere and I don’t instantly feel the magic.

When everyone I meet feels distant and shallow.

When my soul aches to feel alive and all I feel is antsy.

When I wonder, “What the fuck am I doing here??!”

 

This American Girl

 

It makes me fantasize about Costa Rica, or the last place I loved, or a better beach, or a town with yoga. It can even leave me longing for my family and my birth home.

 

And every time I ask myself…

“Am I really this traveler that I thought I was?”

“Do I even want to do this anymore?”

“Did I actually grow at all?”

 

Ultimate Guide to Puerto Viejo - 003

 

The worst is when the fear meets me in Costa Rica. When the “old” me who I thought I destroyed creeps in again… in the place I love most of all.

 

When I get bored of laying on the beach for hours.

When I feel frustrated that I can’t get anything done.

When it rains for days and I feel isolated and alone.

When I lose discipline in my yoga practice or I get sucked into small town drama or I return to unhealthy patterns with men.

 

Puerto-Viejo

 

I start to panic that every high was just an illusion. I start to worry that I’m forever stuck in my sadness. I want to move to fix it, but I know there’s nowhere left for me to go.

 

And every time I ask myself…

“Will I ever be satisfied ANYWHERE?”

“How can I get back to being the happy me?”

“Did I actually grow at all?”

 

Laos - 31

 

But then I remember…

My awareness of my old patterns is evidence that I am different than I was before.

My awareness that I want something greater is evidence that I am different than I was before.

My awareness is evidence that I am growing. No matter how I’m acting and no matter where I am.

 

Palenque

 

I know how it feels to see yourself blossom in ways you never knew possible…

and then watch yourself wither.

 

This American Girl

 

I know how it feels to soar into aliveness…

and then become dull and detached.

 

puerto viejo

 

I know how it feels to be happier, clearer, more empowered, more authentic, more driven, more aware, more purposeful, than you ever knew you could be…

and then wonder if you can ever get back there again.

 

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And the sobering truth is… you can’t.

 

Just like you will never go back to being the person you may be so afraid of re-becoming, you will also never go back to being the person who you idealized in a moment from your past.

 

Because all that you are is who you are right now.

 

Yucatan22

 

Who you are now is more than who you were when you worked at a desk job or when you took an adventure of a lifetime or when you felt trapped at home or when you had absolute freedom on the road. Who you are now is more than who you were when you were consumed with anxiety or when you felt perfectly content. Who you are now is more than who you were on that long bus ride, in that beautiful relationship, watching that epic sunset, taking that transformative retreat, and crying on the plane ride home.

 

This is Not the End - 34

 

Who you are now is the wholeness that survived all of that.

Who you are now is the potential to evolve into something greater than all of that.

Because you have become and unbecome every moment of all of that.

 

Pai

 

In the highest highs and the lowest lows

in your best expression of love and your worst explosion of fear

your continuous transformation is happening right how

whether you recognize it or not.

 

That is the purpose of life.

 

Lake Atitlan

 

Our purpose is not to remain in the spaces where we feel best or most comfortable. Our purpose is to grow. Our purpose is to endlessly expand into the greatness of our unlimited potential. And the only thing that makes anything that we are “good” or “bad” or “better” or “worse” is the belief that we are anything less than exactly who we are meant to be. Right now. No matter where we are.

 

Puerto Viejo

 

When we accept that, we can see the truth about going home.

Which is that we can never go home.

We’re already there.

 


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Comments

  1. Charissa Says: July 6, 2016 at 3:44 am

    “Who you are now is the wholeness that survived all of that.” Thank you from the bottom of my heart for this. You change lives. x

  2. I love you Camille. Thank you for writing this. I miss you like crazy. I’d love to Skype soon!

  3. I knew you would lose your fear of not becoming because you have learned to follow your heart not matter what. If your heart wants to go home and spread your wisdom to others back home then so be it. I love your blog and would hope you could keep us updated on your new adventure of going home.

    • Camille Willemain Says: July 6, 2016 at 9:33 am

      Thank you Nicki. I am here for a visit before I go to Costa Rica at the end of summer <3

  4. Thank you for writing this – it really resonated with me. Your posts are inspirational!

  5. Perfectly explained! We are all a work in progress :)

    x

  6. “My awareness of my old patterns is evidence that I am different than I was before.

    My awareness that I want something greater is evidence that I am different than I was before.

    My awareness is evidence that I am growing. No matter how I’m acting and no matter where I am.”

    THANK YOU for writing this. Sometimes I feel bad too that I’m not making as much progress as I want to towards being a better person. This is a great thing to remember and I will try to keep this in mind. Just the fact that I am aware of what I want to change does mean that I’m growing! :-)

  7. This is so great. I have decided to make a home again in Hawaii and the thought of buying furniture and limiting my freedom was terrifying me. But, I realized it’s another chapter of my life. I have grown so much outward. Now, for me, it’s time to put down roots again and grow upward! And, yes, home is wherever I am. Thanks for your inspiration!!

  8. Kirsten Says: July 6, 2016 at 9:01 pm

    I’ve been following you for a couple months and I didn’t know you were a Seattleite! So nice to find another Seattle native living in CR :) I went home for just a few weeks recently and I struggled so I relate a lot to your post. Thank you!! Your blog brings me a lot of joy.

  9. Yay! You’re back. I’m glad you’re back. If you feel constricted while in Seattle, make a quick run to Hawaii (cheapest from the West coast, direct flights, and an abundance of magic.) Kaua’i is my Costa Rica. :) I look forward to reading your blog posts on the regular! Aloha

    • Camille Willemain Says: July 7, 2016 at 2:35 pm

      Thank you love. Yesss I have been wanting to go to Kauai I have a feeling I may have a home there too 😉 xx

  10. Cecilia Says: July 7, 2016 at 4:57 pm

    You’re growing so much my love

  11. Wow. Love this. And I like the creative form you took in writing it. Thanks for sharing!

  12. Michele Says: July 12, 2016 at 3:30 pm

    Well if this doesn’t just hit the nail on the head. It’s been 2 weeks back in the USA after 3 years of on and off living in Costa Rica (and traveling around the world the last 6 months). As I sit in my summer office at my old law firm I am reading your blog and NOT working. Can I return to this life? Not likely. Is Costa Rica the place I will call home? I realized I could live almost anywhere, but until my recent time back I always thought it was Costa Rica. I got stuck in one of the major tourist towns. I feel like I missed out on the quiet living. But … it’s not too late I guess. I will enjoy perusing your gorgeous pics and kindred experiences. Pura Vida y Namaste P.S. UW grad Yeah Seattle.

    • Camille Willemain Says: July 12, 2016 at 7:04 pm

      Michele, I feel you and I’ve been there. You’re absolutely right, it’s never too late. What does your restlessness tell you that you need to do to nourish your soul fire?

  13. Wow, what a beautiful prose. It really hit home for me. I’ve been reading your blog for 2 years now, and this is probably the article that moved me the most because I could really relate to the writing. Thanks for being so authentic and I hope to read more of your experiences! Cheers from Montreal

  14. Love you blog..

  15. Beautifully said, Camille. Sometimes it’s hard to remember this when I go home, even if it’s only for a short time. It’s hard to battle against the person everyone still thinks you are the new person you’ve become since being away. That’s what I struggle with most. Thanks for the wise words. :)

    • Camille Willemain Says: July 15, 2016 at 11:07 am

      I understand love. Stay open and trust that you are a new creation every moment, every breath. xx

  16. Quyen Do Thi Kim Says: July 19, 2016 at 1:07 am

    Thanks Camilla for this posting, that’s exactly the same feeling for those who love travel <3

  17. Camille, I always come to your blog for reassurance and positivity! In 3 weeks I’ll be starting my 2nd solo trip this time to South America and I’m as excited as I am terrified!! It’s going to be strange converting back to nomadic life again!

    xxx

  18. Hi Camille,
    I never thought about going home in the way you just wrote about it. It is very inspirational in so many ways. I just came home after a year of travels and this is the post I needed to read.
    One thing I absolutely love is when people make me think about something new. Thank you!

  19. I’ve experienced this myself. Travel changes you on a fundamental level in a way that people who haven’t experienced it won’t be able to understand, but that’s ok. I would never go back to pre-travel me. Beautiful post. Thank you!