Both Feet on the Ground

White storks in Marocco

When I arrived, I felt so stupidly proud of myself even though the step that I had taken was a small one! But it was a step in the right direction, it was me under construction, like every other day, but this one was a bit more intense than the others. It was most certainly not a great accomplishment in my life, but at the same time, it meant the world that day. It was one part of myself I was knowingly shaping.

(from One Foot on the Ground)

In the weeks that followed, I experienced many lovely moments. I took part in the events of a cultural institute in the city of Agadir and met a beautiful crowd of driven young people who want to change Moroccan society for the better; I found a travelling companion with whom I shared a part of my trip, making it much easier for me to feel comfortable walking around later in the day or in places that I still felt insecure going alone.

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Travelling alone for the first time in an unfamiliar setting, I realised I felt restricted.

For example, I could not experience the night life, since I did not have the courage to go out alone and explore the streets after dark; I chose safer and more comfortable means of transport for tourists avoiding travelling with local busses, to name but a couple.

I possibly may have felt fine if I had ventured out alone but the feeling of anxiety that I was experiencing simply meant that it was not worth even trying.

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I tasted but a small fraction of the lifestyle of Moroccans. I wandered the narrow streets of the Medina (old city). I got to witness the beauty of creating all the small things that make up life. The fruits, vegetables and nuts that were all freshly hand-picked and grown locally, all combined in tasty dishes; the carpet makers who work in their small shops all around the streets; the jewellery vendors telling stories about the origins of rocks which had been transformed into breathtaking ornaments; and the amazing and delicious confectioneries that made your mouth water just by passing by them.

I felt present and increasingly became more at ease, but at the same time I was aware of the noise that were my feelings and thoughts that I had still not managed to clear.

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As an ending to my trip, I decided to take the last week and spend it in the city of Tangier in order to have time to reflect upon the end of my two and a half year adventure and to ponder about what lay ahead for me. I felt it was time to calm down, and to simply pay attention to my thoughts and feelings. At first it felt odd, even boring sometimes. I was sitting outside on the terrace of the hostel thinking about what I was feeling and the reasons for that.

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I am grateful for the time I invested in myself that week because, for the first time, I prioritized feeling over everything else. My days consisted of me going for walks in the city, drinking tea, eating and listening to music. I made no plans – my sole objective was to comprehend my feelings.

The only drawback was that, because I had not done this before, I felt weird. After a few days of just trying to understand, I started to feel present once again. I had managed to clear my mind and this let me see what was actually going on inside of it.

I was seeing all the random thoughts I was having, and was amazed by the complexity and anarchy that I found. I used to believe my thoughts were organised, clear and inter-connected in an orderly fashion. Turns out, little did I know!

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I was wondering whether everyone communicates such a small part of their soul to other human beings? Do all people struggle so much when they try to express what is inside of them, and how they really feel? Do we all simply bottle up everything inside of us and just deal with what is on our minds and in our souls every day?

Of course you cannot make someone understand what is inside you, and you never will. But how close can you get? Am I really so unique because I did not manage to express anything close to the reality of my soul to myself or anyone else?

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I was afraid others would not understand the quest I was on, that they would judge me when seeing it, and that I would be exposed. And being exposed made me feel as if I were weak, as if I would not have myself anymore; I would give myself for someone to see it. It is scary. I wanted to speak, but at the same time, I wished to remain quiet.

It was a beautiful time for which I am very grateful. It might sound odd, but I promise I am “normal”, at least I think so. And trusting that I can accept who I am and the shape I was in gave me a sense of tranquility and strength. I feel that I have created a more solid foundation to handle what was to come in the future.

On that note, I thank you for reading my journey and wish you delightful adventures for your life!

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Credits

Image Title Author License
White storks in Marocco White storks in Marocco Christian Rosenbaum CC BY-SA 3.0
Both feet on the ground (1) Both feet on the ground (1) Iulia Farcane CC BY-SA 4.0
Both feet on the ground (2) Both feet on the ground (2) Iulia Farcane CC BY-SA 4.0
Both feet on the ground (3) Both feet on the ground (3) Iulia Farcane CC BY-SA 4.0
Both feet on the ground (4) Both feet on the ground (4) Iulia Farcane CC BY-SA 4.0
Both feet on the ground (5) Both feet on the ground (5) Iulia Farcane CC BY-SA 4.0
Both feet on the ground (7) Both feet on the ground (7) Iulia Farcane CC BY-SA 4.0
Both feet on the ground (8) Both feet on the ground (8) Iulia Farcane CC BY-SA 4.0
Both feet on the ground (6) Both feet on the ground (6) Iulia Farcane CC BY-SA 4.0

Discussion (2 Comments)

  1. It takes courage for people to step back, be still, be quiet and listen to the deeper currents, joining the quiet music of life, but you have found the strength. May that energy stay with you, and with everyone who reflects and listens, as you move on to heal the world around you. The world greatly needs that peace.

    1. Thank you! I appreciate your thoughts very much! 🙂