We only have one life to live…
In a recent article, Amber Tree Leave discussed his doubts about FIRE. He started his blog with this catchphrase:
The idea sounds great: live well below your means, invest the difference and in about 15 years we will be Financially Independent and could Retire Early.
Or, we could live now, travel the world and seven seas now. Not bad either…
Live now. This resonates powerfully with me right now. When we decided to leave for a 1 year road trip, I had one thing in mind: what if this year was my last?
I’m not a fatalist and I don’t live with the idea that I’m about to stop breathing at any moment. However, when the project of travelling with our family came up 2 years ago, I started to asking myself what would I want to do if I’d be told that I have 1 year left on this earth. The answer was crystal clear in my mind: I would like to spend my last 12 months on earth with my wife and three kids. We have a very bad habit of thinking that we are all super powered humans that will live 200 years. But the truth is completely otherwise; we will all die and some sooner than they thought.
This reflexion got me going even more recently. My wife started to have a series of serious headaches. Now that we were about to leave in less than 2 months, she started to not ill. The first thing that came to our mind was the fear of a tumor. I know, headaches could be created by a thousand other things that are not fatal, but when you are about to achieve the project of your life, all you think about is that something could come and break this dream right in front of you. Good news! The scanner and blood samples didn’t show anything bad. Still, we were so shocked we barely discussed the topic together. We kind of lived this fear alone as we didn’t want to scare each other.
We can live now
This is the reason why I am leaving in 3 weeks: to live now. To do something extraordinary with my life, now. Not in 5 years, not in 15 years, not when I will retire. I want to do it now!
We have almost stopped watching TV over the past 3 months. I reserve a very small portion of my week to watch 1 series at a time on Netflix. Recently, I started watching Suits. In one line, it’s the story of a very successful lawyer who hires a genius with no degree as his apprentice. This reminds me of my day job as some lawyers work very hard and earn big money. I personally work less and make less, but the idea is the same. What hit me was an episode in Season 2 where the genius cancelled his dinner with his grandmother (the person that is the most important in his life at that time) because he had too much work. He then prepared a great surprise for his grandmother a few days later to find out that she passed away while she was waiting to come and see his surprise. Life goes by in the very time you have read this article…. But it might also stop for someone you know by the time you finish reading. This is how it works; we have no clue when we will leave. This is mainly why I want to leave now, because I want to live now!
What about FIRE?
At the same time, it doesn’t mean that I’m cancelling my project of FIRE. In fact, I might as well reunite both my dreams of traveling with my family and being my own boss during the same year. I’m that kind of guy; I’ll be trying to achieve both at the same time. After all, people who think it’s impossible is because they haven’t tried it yet