As I neared turning the BIG 3-0, it was very apparent I had fallen into a hole and something needed to change: I was sad and lost, which were feelings I honestly didn’t even understand because I had always been “high on life.” I had always defined myself as driven and a dreamer (My life motto from a young age was, “If you have a dream, don’t just dream it. Make it happen.”). And I held myself to it…always. My life goal – set at about 8 yrs old – was I will become a famous singer, make $1 million dollars, then use that $1 mil to build a hotel like Atlantis in the Bahamas where people could experience ultimate fun (Atlantis actually cost about $800 million to build – oh the wonderful delusions of a kid.) None-the-less, as I grew older and more realistic, I still held myself to these goals, but never gave myself the permission to allow them to evolve and change in the way they needed to. I pushed myself for years – and felt full of guilt for not reaching part of my original goals.
I had worked in the music industry to get experience behind-the-scenes, but hadn’t truly sang much. So about 4 years ago, I had the opportunity to spend time really giving singing a go, and I’m very proud that I wrote and self produced a CD with a local producer. I was also the lead singer in a Motown band for a year. Both were extremely scary, and out of my comfort zone, but I did it. And while running my business. But when it was all said and done, I wasn’t enjoying it. I still didn’t love the industry and realized that maybe that 8 year old dream was a bit skewed – to say the least.
My world was rocked: what I thought I wanted my entire life wasn’t even what I fully wanted. Along with this realization I was experiencing, I was finding a lack of fun, adventure, and opportunity. My inner determination – and a very amazing boyfriend – kicked in: I was going get happy again, because let’s be honest, not being happy just sucks.
I started doing a lot of examination of myself to figure out what I did want today and not what I wanted as an 8 yr old. I’d lost much of my drive and needed it back to feel whole again. Life felt stale. Wake up, work, go to bed. Boring… Once I was open to this idea of change and self growth, change landed at my doorstep with a group of amazing power-women (Let’s call them My Betty’s), forces of negative relationships floated away, and my eyes opened to things around me in a different way. Okay, it didn’t just land at my doorstep, it took work (and continues to), but the results of the work just came flooding in. It turns out, that hotel dream is actually fully still there – just changed.
While all these feelings and realizations were floating around in my head and heart, the lease of our perfectly-cute house was nearing its end. We loved our home, but something just didn’t feel right: it felt stagnant. We searched for other houses in hopes to erase those stale feelings, but nothing called to us. My man and I had toyed with the idea that we would take a month in Costa Rica and work remotely after our lease ended, but when the time came, he wasn’t able to because of business. However, we hoped in the next few months, the opportunity would arise again.
Our lease came up at the end of August, 2013, we decided to pack up our entire life, put it in a storage in Austin, and rent vacation rentals through Airbnb and HomeAway for a few months until Costa Rica was an option again. It would keep our life exciting and interesting. I figured after 3 months I would be so ready to “settle down” that I’d be crawling the wall. I had no idea the life-changing and eye-opening experience we were going to have – mostly all in our own City of Austin.
Check out the blog that tells how the adventure began.
We do not have a mortgage, a permanent residence, and my business is all remote – his mostly is as well. So when people ask, “why are you doing this?” I want to just say the word: Opportunity. Because that’s what it’s all about for us. Our dreams and goals have no limit. I can pick up and go research hotels. I can go live for a month at a seaside village. I can get out of the Austin heat in the summer. Our daily responsibilities have turned from cleaning the house and paying the yard guy to enjoying each day – around new people and places: you’d be surprised even in one city how different each neighborhood is.
I have been sharing each house experience. I hope that by being dedicated to writing, it makes me more aware of my surroundings and appreciative of this opportunity. I hope that by sharing these stories with you, I can provide, at the least some entertainment to you.
Contact: Cierra (AT) PigtailMedia (DOT) com