It is Eat Travel Hustle’s mission to help you create a roadmap to living a goal-getting life of purpose and to achieve the financial and personal freedom to crush your bucket list… through inspirational stories and actionable tips.
My life has been anything but ordinary. As a little girl, I thought I had been punished or somehow unlucky to not have my mother or father in the house. My mother, a memorable woman, died from cancer when I was five. I thought that I would somehow miss out on so many experiences of love and adventure, even education, that I believed would’ve happened if only she would’ve still been here. But what actually happened… How my life actually began to shape itself is somewhat of a miracle. Or maybe it’s just fate?
My mother entrusted my guardianship to my two older sisters. One of them, a chitterlings-eating Christian fundamentalist, took me to church every Sunday and made sure that I said the Lord’s prayer before bed every evening. The other, a Muslim and yogi with a disciplined approach to life and holistic living, taught me the Islamic prayer in Arabic and how to cook amazing gourmet vegetarian meals. Between these two experiences, I developed a truly open mind and interest in cultural differences. Now, don’t get me wrong, I would have developed this with my world-traveling multilingual mom had she been alive, but the fact that I still experienced this cultural dichotomy growing up has to be divinely ordained.
By my teen years, I had become obsessed with boys. I ended up pregnant with my now-17-year-old son and love of my life, Sebastian. His father stayed behind the scenes, present but always absent it seemed. And I lived the life of a struggling and bitter single mom… feeling trapped by my own design.
The life I had envisioned of traveling the world, free and clear of responsibility just didn’t seem possible anymore. And here I was an adult that had never lived a single day in adulthood without the enormous responsibility of the needs and survival of another person.
Then my youngest brother died. Stage 4 stomach cancer came in like a thief in the night and stole him from us in less than 6 weeks. He died a few days before Christmas 2012. I sat in a hospital room as my brother said his goodbyes to his 12-year-old daughter – – who is only a year older than Sebastian. It was the most heartbreaking thing I’ve ever seen… and through the heartbreak, I found immense inspiration in my brother’s sacrifice. I couldn’t allow myself to be trapped anymore. I had my life, my health, the drive and determination of a lion, and I realized that my only excuse was the cage that I had created for myself.
So on January 20, 2013, my son and I decided to move to Heredia, Costa Rica. We packed up our townhouse into 4 full-sized suitcases, got passports, sold my car for $500, put everything else we owned in storage, and moved. We arrived in Costa Rica on February 9, 2013. I had just $5000 to finance our move and get us started in Heredia. I figured I could sustain us with the income from the digital agency that I started in 2005.
Costa Rica was life-changing for me… I had never felt so much peace or in tune with the Sun and my inner being. But Sebastian hated it. After about two months, he stopped speaking to me… and by the third month, I had given up on this new journey of being a single parent nomad. So we returned home… to nothing.
It took me almost 2 years to get back on my feet and able to move us into a nice apartment in DC and buy a car. We lived there for two years and recently moved to a waterfront home on the Chesapeake Bay in a perfect neighborhood in Maryland. Now, I’ve created a life that it seems other people aspire to have. But my deep desire and dream of being totally free and unrestrained by responsibility just won’t go away. I’ve sacrificed love and sabotaged relationships just to be free. I dream of conversing and mingling with the natives in many nations, living for adventure and life experiences that most will never have.
So here we are… I’m caught between a waterfront home with stability and a life of freedom and adventure. Meanwhile, Sebastian has one more year before high school graduation and then I’ll be a single empty nester at age 35.
So here you are… reading my blog…
My goal is to inspire and somehow live a life of compromise… all while sharing what I love with you… eating well, exploring the most exotic corners of the earth… and hustling of course.
Here’s to life… extraordinary.