Yes, I know. We’ve been on goat and cattle farms for a couple of months. But I’m not talking about slaughtering a farm animal and offering it to a deity.
I’m talking about the other meaning of the word sacrifice:
“The destruction or surrender of something for the sake of something else.”Mirriam Webster
Its a word we Americans don’t like to hear. We like to think that we can - and should - have it all. And the sooner the better.
Just put it on my credit card.
I don’t like the victim mentality. In this case, however, we are not completely at fault for having these expectations.
There is an entire industry filled with smart people who find ways to make us want what we don’t need. They create, test, and finesse their advertisements to optimize results.
When people get the idea to ditch the suburbs we often see them struggle with a clash of desires. They want to travel. They want to find adventure. They want a more interesting life than what they have in the suburbs.
But they don’t want to sacrifice.
Ditching Suburbia Manifesto Shirt
Suburbia-ditchers have different values than most people - tell the world what they are:
Simpler Living. Closer Family. Richer Education. Uncommon Adventures.
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- do laundry at a laundromat
- pull kids from team sports
- grocery shop every week
- give up a daily 30 minute shower
- give up streaming movies every night
- tell my kids to stop online gaming
- give up having a second vehicle
- get rid of canoes, sea-doos, scuba gear, or other toys
- give up a private home office
- make my kids share a room
- do dishes by hand
- stop going to Crossfit
- leave family and friends
- leave a church
You don’t have to sacrifice everything to ditch the suburbs.
You can find RVs with washer, dryers, and dishwashers. Some RV floorplans allow for a private office. Some families caravan with a second vehicle.
But for everything you decide you can’t live without, there is a cost.
To fit ‘all the things’ into an RV, it has to be big. Bigger RVs cost more to buy and move. They are harder to maneuver in traffic, gas stations, and campgrounds. Many RV parks charge fees for extra vehicles. Onboard laundries require a full hookup site.
Ultimately, you can’t ditch the suburbs and take the suburbs with you.
You’ll have to sacrifice.
But there is an ‘insider secret’ the advertising world will never tell you.
There is often beauty in sacrifice.
We’ve had awesome conversations at laundromats. We’ve found more authentic “church” on the road. Kids learn responsibility by doing the dishes. Kids can create their own games, recruit others, and umpire themselves without adult involvement.
We left on a 1-year RV trip around the USA. Somewhere during that first year, the landscape shifted. Our travels became less about what we sacrificed to begin, and more about what we’d have to sacrifice to stop.
So we haven’t. We are now over six years into that 1-year trip.
If you are preparing to ditch, what sacrifice is scaring you the most?
Leave a comment below and let me know.