Time to think and quiet the mind


A quiet, soft-pastel morning in Iowa.

I’ve self-diagnosed myself with a violent case of wanderlust. I know. Big surprise, right? Truck driving is keeping me comfortable, but it feels as though I’m often times teetering on the edge of running away into the mountains that I’m driving past and disappearing. But I won’t. I’m not that nuts, and don’t think I’ll ever get that bad. But those kinds of thoughts fuel my daydreams as I drive along for hours on end. I might have to put these “daydreams” to use somehow, though – maybe a fictional short story or something. I’m getting the bug to write something of substance, so maybe…

So after a rough week I’m figuring this thing out, and I feel a ton better. And since I’m feeling better, my mind has been a little clearer and quieter. Having a quieter mind and lots of time to think was good for me this week. I came to a sort of conclusion about my recent mini-bout of depression. I think it was the result of a series of thoughts that collided with particular timing.

I started thinking back when I worked at the office. I worked Monday through Friday, 8-5. I had weekends off, a gym membership that I used regularly, Friday happy hour with my girlfriends was a regular occurance, I was usually training for some sort of race and running a lot, I had quite a bit of paid vacation time, weekend backpacking trips with my Meetup group colored my calendar, and I almost always had a bigger trip in some stage of planning.

So why trucking? Right? Let me tell you right away, I’d do it the same way if I could do it over. I’ll say it again – I loved that office job, I loved that company, and I especially loved the people I worked with. It was hard to leave. But I needed a change, and mostly, I needed adventure. Adam and I came up with a fun plan, and we’ve stuck to it, and I’m really proud of us both for doing that. I’m glad, too, because here’s the thing – I really do love this job!

With that being said, I think I’m creeping towards the end of the “honeymoon stage” of this new and exciting career. That certainly doesn’t mean it’s boring, that I don’t like it, or that it’s any less exciting (it is winter after all, so there’s plenty of excitement!) – it just means I’m getting settled into this new way of life. This settling gives me time to compare it to my previous work life, and I think that’s where I took a wrong turn. Talk about comparing apples and oranges!


Truck shadow, morning glow.

It’s about transition. I’ve done a whole helluva lot of transitioning (and not little stuff) in the last year and a half and I am entirely grateful and happy beyond comprehension about the experiences I’ve had. Some of that transitioning surrounded a thru-hike of the PCT for goodness sake!

So I feel better now, remembering (and knowing) that I love what I’m doing and that this adventure is exciting, too. There’s a purpose for it all, and while it’s okay to miss things from my past, I should focus more on my current, awesome situation. I miss things, people, experiences and situations a lot, but that’s a good thing – it just means I’ve got a lot of amazing things, people, experiences and situations in my life TO miss. And for that I’m thankful.

So on the funny side of things, I just need to stop acting like a spoiled little brat (I admit it, I am) and recover from this. Yes, I’m totally dangerously obsessed with backpacking, and of course I want to just backpack ALL THE TIME. Unfortunately that’s not gonna get me a paycheck or pay off my student loan debt. But at least I truly love what I’m doing and I’m enjoying this ride! It doesn’t have to be perfect all the time. How boring would that be?

As Modest Mouse sings in their song “Lives,”
“If you could be anything you want I bet you’d be disappointed. Am I right?”

Ya’ know, I don’t know if I actually agree with that quote or not, but I’d be willing to try! Haha! But really, it’s probably like having all the money in the world – you could get anything you want, but it would still not be enough. And on top of that, what would there be left to dream about? Dreaming is pretty fantastic. I don’t ever wanna’ stop.

What this all boils down to is a quote by David Allen that’s pretty much become my life’s mantra:

“You can do anything but you can’t do everything.”

Tonight I love that I received three really nice, unrelated messages by friends out of the blue, right in the middle of my little sad phase – before I wrote about it here – three little smiles that came at a really good time. I was fragile and needed to know I was cared about without having to ask. Someone was listening to my prayers. ♡


Everything is frosty and white. And cold.


I have a love/hate relationship with Wyoming right now! So beautiful - but its driving weather! Ugh!


A peek at the truck dash - listening to the Foo.




4 thoughts on “Time to think and quiet the mind

  1. Hey Robin!!! Love that you’re listening to the FOO!!! Know that all of us girls are missing you anytime and everytime we manage to get together on a Friday! But especially, I miss you. I miss your motivation to go to the gym and make it count. I miss our nutty adventures (sledding during a blizzard at garbage hill, hello!?) and that i could always count on you to be down for some silly sh#t like biking 75 miles in the heat or jumping in at the lake in the Kettles. Just miss your face!! LOVE YA GIRL! Merry Christmas and all that jazz! :) Hope to see you soon! ROCKON!
    Love, Jukebox

  2. Stress management classes often suggest that a weekly ritual is important for getting through the week. Our jobs (after the honeymoon phase) often turn into a constant repetitive cycle of going to work, coming home, going to work, coming home. After a while, there’s nothing to look forward to because it’s the same thing day after day. So it’s important to have one day a week where you have a little relaxation ritual. Something as simple as meeting friends to go bowling on Wednesdays or meeting with a reading group on Thursdays. The key is that your ritual occurs during the work week and that it occurs on the same day every week. That way, you have something to look forward to. It sounds like you had this in place at your old job with a girls’ night out and meetups with your hiking friends. Maybe that’s part of what you’re missing now that the glamour of the new job has worn off a bit.

    You also seem very goal driven. Maybe now that the goal of becoming a truck driver has been accomplished, you’re in need of a new goal. You’re in the goal doldrums and you need something new to work towards and focus on. It’s the same feeling we backpackers get after finishing a long planned for hike – it’s done, it’s over, now what?

  3. “You can do anything but you can’t do everything.”

    I am taking that quote. Love it and can relate to it. I don’t know if you get the same but ppl telling you how great your life is and how lucky you are. Yet somehow it just dont feel right, not quite complete. Like somewhere there is just one more piece of the puzzle to get added to it.

    Depression is a total ****, somehow seems worse this time of year. It is hard to stop and do nothing but somehow got to find the way to take time and take stock. Enjoy what you have, you are not getting a 2nd go at this game.

    Above all, be safe. You are still awesome. Happy Holidays

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