It has been my dream to backpack during the Summer of 2016 for the past year and some change. I dreamt of it before I even had a passport, so the fact that I own one now and can trek across the globe makes me hungrier to do it. Unfortunately though, it seems as the seasons are changing, the incidents of terrorism are becoming more present. Although, before I continue...
Let me be clear in the fact that I am speaking about isolated acts of terrorism (i.e. Paris, Belgium). I am well aware and sensitive to the fact that some countries are in states of civil war and have been for some time. Take Venezuela. I would love to spend time there, but I have been cognizant of their political turmoil for some time. That is not what I am talking about.
Two of the cities I planned on visiting have been hit, and while it makes my heart wrench, I definitely still plan on going. I do not think I am invincible, and I take all violent acts seriously, but I still have to live. I'm sure some people would say I have a better chance of living if I simply do not go, but operating in fear is not LIVING. Terrorism is even hitting our own domestic soil here in the US, but that is another topic for another day.
I was particularly proud of President Obama's response to criticism about his decision to attend the Cuban baseball game after the attacks in Belgium (click here for a great recap). We cannot stop living our day-to-day lives. And as cliche as it sounds, with all of the misfortunate events surrounding us, I still hold firm that there is a wealth of good in the world. Truth be told, anything can happen anywhere at any time. I highly doubt that people do not find New York City attractive anymore, 15 years after September 11, 2001. It is still one of the top, if not the top, tourist destinations in the United States. The people of New York are resilient, as are the people of Nigeria, Pakistan, Turkey, etc. We have to trust our instincts and continue to push forward. I do not intend to let this cripple my plans.
Fear is real, and so is Jesus.
Tomorrow is never promised to me and while I am able to see the world, I am going for it. I utilize my getaways to recharge, refocus, and just be. I can only hope that you as a reader, do not let fear hinder you and stop you from living your truth and living your dream. I haven't even gotten to Africa yet! #JustWaitOnIt Wherever you are headed, I can only pray for traveling mercies and that you have the trip of a lifetime. I refuse to let these organizations defeat me and I hope it doesn't stop your show either. Stay aware of your surroundings, maintain positive vibes, and soak up the unforgettable.