Are you really surprised as if it were something unprecedented, that so long a tour and such diversity of scene have no enabled you to throw off this melancholy and this feeling of depression? A change of character, not a change of air, is what you need…Whatever your destination, you will be followed by your failings…you are running away in your own company. You have to lay aside the load of on your Spirit…Where you arrive does not matter so much as what sort of person you are when you arrive there.Letters from a Stoic, Seneca
After eighteen months of traveling and a spontaneous decision to root down in California, I managed to come across this portion of a book through a video on TikTok. It moved me so much that I rushed to download the book and ruminate on this passage.
I guess it doesn’t matter where you go or where you travel to. You’ll always bring yourself everywhere you go. You bring your feelings, your self doubt, your shame, your guilt and your shortcomings to each new scenery. You are the most burdensome baggage that you can carry, so when you leave and arrive at another place, your heaviness comes with you. If you’re able to shift your character, you can be happy anywhere and everywhere, especially here. Now.
And while my travels have scattered me far and wide, through corners and pockets of the world, allowing me to collect cherished memories and moments, I brought my own shortcomings with me. So I am grateful for this moment, now, to stop running. To be here. Witnessing my character and the aspects I am in the process of alchemizing. That I may unearth the treasures within me, dust and polish them off to gaze in their beauty. To integrate them into my being. To create the change I wish to see.