How to Be a Rebel Girl

When You Fall in Love

Early morning in the Isabela Island, Galapagos, Ecuador

I used to be a rebel girl, you know. I had to fight for myself because coming from nowhere, I had everywhere to go, and I had big dreams too. I put my life into one suitcase and hit the road and I lived, learned, danced and sang as much as I could.

I used to feel so insanely free. I felt free in this wild and liberating way that makes you breathe in the morning frosty air and scream out loud that you are here, alive at that very moment.

I cherished my freedom and I cherished my independence that both together established the most solid base for my happiness. I always liked people but loved nature even more. I knew that where I really belonged was high up in the mountains or close to the sea. I knew how to navigate through big cities, how to use their opportunities and speed but I always came back home to the green hills to quiten my mind.

I learned to love to travel by myself, to pay attention to things, to explore the unexplored and to always ask questions. I learned to treat my breakfasts and books as sacred temples of self-healing and didn’t allow any job or exam to take it away from me for too long. I learned to deal with pressure, to work fast and to swim under water.

I lived this way for nearly 10 years, stunned by the wonders of this world, grateful for my youth, connected to the universe. I claimed minimalism as my only philosophy, I claimed my one suitcase to be more than enough, I claimed my mobility and lightness of being as most important. The more I knew, the less I needed.

And then, slowly, the way the sun comes up after a long winter night, I fell in love. As cheesy as it sounds. I met him and my world turned upside down, without really turning, just slowly falling into place.

I still cherish my freedom, but it is only real when I am by his side. I still feel strong and independent, but I don’t want to sleep alone anymore. I feel all these overwhelming things that make me feel fragile, and complex, and beautiful.

With him I learned that shared breakfasts are even more sacred than my lonely ones. I learned that together we can walk just as fast, but get even further. I learned that being with somebody is all about being something greater together than what you are as a sum of parts. I learned that to bake a good carrot cake is enough to say ‘I love you, would you stay here for a while?’.

I feel like staying home now. I feel like maybe the purpose of it all is not really this crazy marathon of adventures but loving and being loved, maybe it’s just another kind of purpose, to share the small miracles and feel grateful for every little thing.

I feel like our morning walks, shared meals, like the late night conversations and making music together fill my life with something that is hard to describe, but that feels like a wall that I can lean on, and it gives warmth.

I don’t know if I want to be a rebel girl anymore. Maybe I want to move to a country house and share my life with another gorgeous human who keeps me warm and safe. Maybe I’ll miss the adventure someday but maybe I can convince him to come along for a while. Maybe I can still be a rebel girl who decided to bet on something finally. Like a ship that arrives in a beautiful harbour and decides to rest.

I just wanted to say that it is crazy how things change. The sun comes up, to the very top of my horizon, I look at him, and it shines, and shines, and shines.