On Leaving // jenniferesnyder.com

Here's the thing about leaving on an extended trip alone: it seems thrilling and completely attainable—right up until the night before you leave town when you look around at all of your gear and run through your checklists one last time and think to yourself, "Holy shit. I'M LEAVING."

As of this morning, I'm officially on the road. Luckily, my first stop includes cabin time with my husband and pups. I've conveniently worked that into the trip because... you know... I'm leaving for six weeks and I'm going to miss them something fierce.

To say that I'm overwhelmed with the hugeness of this thrip would be a bit of an understatement. It feels big, what I'm doing. It feels like a commitment. A commitment to myself, to you, to my listeners, to time away from loved ones who are going through some pretty heavy stuff, to adventure, to silence, to following my gut, to meeting incredible people along the way and to doing the work.

At the same time, though, it feels incredibly small. Because I'm just going to be waking up every day and doing what needs to be done—whether that's packing up my microphones and schlepping to an interview, checking in with family and friends, turning the key in the ignition and pointing my car in the direction of the next city or stopping long enough to take in the parts of this country I've never seen.

It's funny—my dear friends are hosting an amazing retreat in early October and one said, "Jen! If you need a retreat when you get back, let us know. You know you're more than welcome!" It was the sweetest thing because I know that I'll probably need time upon my return to process all the things—from hours of recorded audio files to everything I know I will have learned about myself along the way. But, this trip? This is my retreat. I can't imagine another time in my life when I will have weeks and weeks to be out on my own. It's a strange luxury, to say the least.

So, I'm going to mutter the word "retreat" under my breath every time I feel overwhelmed with what I'm trying to do here or worry about what's happening back home. I'm simply pointing my car in the direction of my next destination, my next interview, my next moment for reflection. That's it. No more, no less.

I'll catch you next week, my friends—from Montana, South Dakota and beyond. Remember, I'll be updating everyone as much as possible over on Instagram and feel free to catch up on podcast archives if you're missing the show this week.

See you from the road! xo