We’ve all heard of the 7 year itch. It’s not a good thing or a bad thing. To me It’s just a “thing” the media and society has made a thing. I’ve often wondered where the phrase came from and how it relates to people. So with a little digging (thanks Google), here is a little insight:
The seven-year itch is a psychological term that suggests that happiness in a relationship declines after around year seven of a marriage. The phrase originated as a name for a contagious and irritating skin disease of a long duration. Examples of reference may have been mites that live under the skin (scabies) and cause severe itching that is hard to get rid of. Later on the phrase was first used to describe an inclination to become unfaithful after seven years of marriage in the play The Seven Year Itch by George Axelrod, and gained popularity following the 1955 film adaptation starring Marilyn Monroe and Tom Ewell…You all know this Image…
The phrase has since expanded to indicate cycles of dissatisfaction not only in interpersonal relationships but in any situation such as working a full-time job or buying a house, where a decrease in happiness and satisfaction is often seen over long periods of time. Hence why some people move, seek new jobs and or get new big ticket items like cars, bikes, etc.
Why am I writing this when I’ve been married for 5 years? I’m not worried about contracting the 7yr itch 🙂 in my marriage, promise. I began thinking about it because Pamela and I have been living in 72 square feet for just over 7 months now. When you live in close quarters, things seem to compound themselves and time can stand still or fast forward, based on the path you choose. I am writing this to share some of my thoughts and how I feel about “VanLife” after 7 months.
So what’s my itch about? That’s what you’re saying as you read this. Right? You’re probably talking back to the screen, saying….You are living the dream, traveling in a van for a year with bikes etc. What gives man? Why aren’t you happy, or why the decrease in happiness?
Here it is.
My 7 month itch or itches to be exact aren’t negative. The following itches bubble to the surface and are top of mind from time to time. I have the itch to continue the journey. I want to revisit places in America and Canada and I would like to take the van to Europe. I have an itch of feeling like I’m still moving too fast, In 7+ months we’ve traveled 18,000+ miles, ridden our bikes 3,600+ miles and seen and done so much…but I ask my self has it stuck and really sunk in? Outside of social media post, blogs and photos…what’s the lasting impression I’m to be stuck with? I have an itch for face to face connections. I’ve always enjoyed meeting new people and connecting with social media’s “insta-friends” in real life…creating real friends.
I have an itch for being around people I respect, enjoy working with and for within the outdoor community. And I (we, know I can speak for Pamela here) have an itch to give back. We’re fortunate enough to be on this journey and for the support of our friends and family. I want to donate time, energy and resources to those in need. I also want to help make peoples dreams of traveling more obtainable and less nerve racking (taking the leap) by being a reliable resource and motivator. Reading what I just wrote I have a visual of my arms and legs covered in a rash from all the itching…LOL. To some the itches could seem like a lot, but for me, they are all little pieces of full time van life and a life I chose.
Little by little I know the itches will subside and then resurface, based on the attention I give a particular one. If you’re reading this and know of a way to help me scratch an itch please let me know. I’m keen to listen and lend a hand if time and space permit.
Next up: Roaming to see family for the Thanksgiving holiday where I can clean the van and make a minor adjustment (make a foldable shelf) as it relates to creature comforts. Then we’re headed south where I will scratch the itch of helping friends and meeting up with industry friends in Orlando, FL.
Thanks for reading and following our journey. Hugs from the Robos in SC.