Being outdoors and sleeping under the stars has become one of my favorite hobbies. If you would’ve told me a few years ago that I’d be sleeping in a tent, surrounded by wild animals, cooking up meals out in nature, I would’ve looked at you like you had two heads. Me, camping? First of all, I’m black and black people don’t go camping. Second of all, there’d be all types of creatures just waiting to maul me in my sleep. Third of all, revert back to second of all…Yup. That was me. I was afraid at even the idea of camping. It turns out that what I was really afraid of though, was the unknown. Like a lot of people who’ve never been camping before I had a lot of what ifs running through my head. What if a creature attacks me in the night? What about personal hygiene? What if. What if. What if. What if… That is until one day, I actually took a leap of faith and I tried camping out for myself. As it turns out, it wasn’t so scary after-all! In fact, it was actually an amazing experience!
Breathtaking scenery. Check. Being able to actually star gaze because of the lack of light pollution. Check. Peace away from the city. Check. I quickly realized that going on camping adventures was like going on a mini vacation, and that’s exactly why I keep going back today. I mean, who doesn’t like mini vacations?! And do you know what makes camping even more awesome? The simple fact that all of those things that I was afraid of about camping, have never actually happened. Not even once, and I’ve been camping a lot. In fact, I’ve really had nothing but fun, positive experiences while camping, and honestly, I’m more afraid of being in the city these days…haha.
Wild animals? Trust me they’re more afraid of you then you are of them. Keep a good distance, don’t bother them, and you’ll be be perfectly fine. Personal hygiene? Some campgrounds have flush toilets and even hot showers! So choose wisely and you can still enjoy some of your favorite creature comforts. Even still, vault toilets really aren’t all that bad, and when you’re truly roughing it, a nice log can feel just as comfy as a toilet seat if you know how to squat well. The point is, I’m not afraid anymore. I turned my fear of camping around into an excitement for camping instead. An excitement for the next new place that I’ll discover on my adventures. An excitement for the next cool animal that I’ll get to see. An excitement for the next new boulder that I’ll climb that stands in my way, both literally and figuratively.
Camping has done more for me than just provide me with a fun new hobby. Camping has completely changed my whole outlook on life. It’s changed me. I’m no longer that fear struck woman whose afraid to take life by the reigns and do things on her own. I’m no longer that person who complains about how unfulfilling their life is, while doing nothing to inject more fun and adventure into it. These days, I’m an adventure seeking, heart of the brave independent woman who lives her life on her own terms. A woman whose on a mission to explore both herself and her outer world, one new adventure at a time.
Camping isn’t for everyone, and that’s okay. Ultimately, this post really isn’t about camping. Camping isn’t for everyone, and that’s okay. Ultimately, this post really isn’t about camping. It’s about facing your fears (whatever they may be) and about doing what sets your soul on fire anyway. It’s about being open to trying new experiences, because life’s way too short, and you just never know! You just might find something out there that you never knew you’d like! Remember, you can try and do anything. Ultimately, the only thing holding you back is yourself, your mind, and fear.