I realized a life-long dream last week. How often do we get to utter those words?
I placed my hands upon stones laid down by a people so ancient that their name and what they called their city is lost to history. Making my way through what the Aztecs named Teotihuacan was a spiritual day for me as I walked the Avenue of the Dead and looked with awe at the Pyramids of the Sun and the Moon. My mind cannot fully process how old this is and what grandeur it used to encompass, so I focus on this: a real person held his paint and created this mural that somehow has survived. He was real. He lived. Now here I stand witnessing his artwork. How amazed he would be to know this. How honored I am to be this witness.
When I tell people that I’ve gone to Teotihuacan, they immediately, eagerly ask, “Did you go up the pyramids?” When I admit I did not, their faces fall and I feel dismissed and regarded as somehow having failed. Refuse this! Do not let other people dictate how you “should” travel. My travel is my personal journey and the expectations of others for my travel and my life do not warrant my regard. My panic at the steep climb and my companion’s foot injury precluded our ascent–and to force the issue on account of “expectations” of how we “should” experience the site would have been misguided.
Once we shed the forced ideas of others, we are then free to journey in a manner that fulfills our own needs and satisfies our own soul.