The other day I stumbled across the term “destination addiction,” which is defined, by a meme I found on Facebook, as “the idea that happiness is in the next place, the next job, or even the next partner.”
As I come up to my six month Campbell River anniversary, I find myself struggling with destination addiction.
I am restless, I daydream about what could be better instead of enjoying what I am doing right now.
What if I moved to Australia and sat on hot sandy beaches and swam in bathtub temperature oceans?
There would be sunshine and adventure.
There would be new people with intriguing accents.
There would be new places to explore and new stories to tell.
What if I got a job with The Western Producer and moved to Edmonton?
I could hang out with my little sister, I could have lunch with my grandma.
I could go home on the weekend, or visit my best friends in Calgary, Golden and Pincher Creek.
I could work the job my dad dreamed I would get when I first went to journalism school.
What if I went to Kings College in Halifax to get my master of fine arts in creative non-fiction?
I could get a start on those big projects I’ve been wanting to dig in to but haven’t had the time.
I could live the easy university life again.
In a way I want all of these things.
In a way leaving is easier than staying, because as soon as you decide to stay somewhere, it becomes harder to leave.
Staying is committing, staying is giving up on all of the other daydreams.
As I was hashing all of this out with a friend, her response was “I don’t think it’s a where, I think it’s a when.”
I am one to remove myself from situations, people and places that I don’t like.
I don’t give up easily, I give everything and everyone too many chances, but there is a line and once it is crossed, I’m out.
But what if, in Campbell River’s case, I pushed it just a little bit.
What if, instead of giving in to destination addiction I made a commitment to sticking around and seeing how everything plays out?
I’ve never moved anywhere that I thought would be permanent. I moved to Calgary for university, a four year commitment. I travelled to India for three weeks and came back to a summer job. I lived in New Zealand for six months, and had to be back for my final year of university. I moved to Pincher Creek with the intention of bettering myself, getting work experience and leaving.
When I came to Campbell River I thought it would be another Pincher Creek.
I moved into a fully furnished place with a month to month lease. I take pride in the fact that I can fit everything in my car and just go if I really want.
But what if I braved the grey rainy winter, what if I settled into Campbell River, made commitments outside of work and decided to stay for awhile?
Maybe this new mindset can be my new destination, a different state of mind instead of a different physical location.
Is this what growing up is like?