In theory life begins when a person is born. I think I started it twice, maybe even more… maybe it starts every time I leave for a trip. Ever since I was a child I have been determined and stubborn, a bit rebellious and a breaker of the rules. These traits were fundamental to forming who I am today. They are especially important because they had led me to the success in my life right now. Because I push past limitations – in travel and in life.
The first lesson I learned in my life is this… when you understand that you just have one life, you understand that in reality there is not a second one waiting.
I realized this in October almost 8 years ago, when I had a motorbike accident. My fall from that scooter, together with my boyfriend of that time, took away from me the use of my legs and the life I knew until that day.
I will not deny that there were moments of sinking into pain and depression, but somehow I found something inside of me that gave me the opportunity to recreate myself.
When I was hospitalized for nine months, I lived right in those difficult moments. The boy in my life at the time was no help indeed, he left me the day I told him my diagnosis and that I could no longer walk.
I immediately understood that love is not like in movies and fairy tales. In life ,there are no Prince Charming who saves you… but you must save yourself.
I had to live with this heartbreak for a while, but it forced me to learn to rely solely on me. So, little by little, I became more confident. Every day, more capable of something and more resilient. To this day my motto is: “Nobody does your best interests but yourself.” This applies to everything… in life, in work, everything.
Months later, I also met friendship and then love, both in the same person… but I was different from how I had always been. During those months, there were only questions in my head about life, its value and what I wanted from it.
I think I found the answers in small things that I began to savor once I left the hospital. Those trivial aspects that we forget about in everyday life. The heat of the sun, the butterflies that lean on us, the feeling of the wind in our hair…
I remember very well when I went out again for the first time and I remember how deeply connected I felt with nature, with the outdoors. From that moment I think that my incessant desire to travel was born.
Once I left, I immediately started traveling with the love of my life, my husband today.
My goals today are to go beyond the limits. I do it for myself, to remind myself that despite the wheelchair… I decide and set most of the limits.
Yes, because I believe that traveling and landscapes have the power to change us. Anyone who has seen the dawn on the Ganges, the clouds of Machu Picchu, the dust of Sigiriya and much more knows what I’m talking about.
So, Dame Traveler… discover yourself, reinvent yourself and love yourself for the uniqueness that you are and represent. And after having done this, share with those who love you, as you love yourself.