There’s a certain sense of freedom that comes with not being tethered down to one specific piece of land. My depression has become a fickle friend over the years, and it tends to rear its ugly head at me when I’m in one place for too long. If I’m not moving, I’m miserable. Living full-time in an RV has become an incredible tool for staving off my depression while still maintaining a sense of home. I can sleep in my own bed at night, even if the outside world shifts from mountains, to sand, to an anthill covered ‘parking lot’ (a term used for many RV resorts that provide slabs of cement neatly placed next to each other like sardines, leaving barely enough room for slide-outs). This idea that I can keep my ‘inside’ life, all while changing my exterior life, awakens the flutter of old, battered, nearly forgotten butterflies in my stomach.
When you don’t have to stay in one place, you can move on when an area becomes too hot, too boring (there’s only so much to do in one place), or too much (I tend to get overwhelmed quite easily as part of my anxiety). Not to mention the excitement (did I mention the butterflies?) of experiencing new things. Moving doesn’t just become an experience, it becomes a way to not only be alive, but to feel alive.
When you’ve grown up in the same city your whole life, getting out and seeing new things isn’t always a possible option, sometimes it’s vital. Breathing in mountain air can help you to exhale all of the stale, negative emotions that have been swirling around inside your chest like heavy smoke for weeks. Salty, sea-fresh air can clear your mind of the darkened fog that is always at the ready to consume. Moving on to a new location can help you to move on to a new emotion. Having a reminder that nothing is permanent can bring an immense sense of peace, especially when you’re feeling stuck. It’s nice to always have a reminder just outside my door that this life can change in an instant and that things won’t be bad forever. After all, things will surely be better just over the next hill, won’t they? And if not immediately better, then they will surely be different, and different can often lead to better.