OPINION: Life’s easier when you don’t compare your van or your life


You know, I would really like to have a heart-to-heart talk with those people who told me through their Instagram posts and their travel vlogs that getting the van life project finished was easy. For those who don’t “van life” is when you turn a van into essentially a living space.

Because right now as I write this article – I am sitting on a spare tire in the back of the van because I don’t want to touch the gross floor where I ripped up old carpet with my freshly washed jeans.

Here I am, three months after my van purchase, and I have just now bought the insulation for the walls. I bought the floor insulation last month but “Oh no, can’t put that up without the walls.”

I get it — if I wasn’t in school right now, I would totally have the time to finish this project in a week or three. If I wasn’t driving it every day for a two hour round trip – it wouldn’t have had the issues like the flat tire from the unavoidable board on the road.

This isn’t supposed to come off as a rant, I understand my position and whatnot. What I want this to serve as is showing the realness of projects and life.

If you are like me and have other things going on, it is hard to be able to sit down and put the money and time into the van when other things are trying to take it.

Which at the end of the day is okay, you don’t have to follow the same timeline that others do if it doesn’t work for you. That’s why it’s your van and not theirs— duh. Let’s be real, we all don’t even follow the same build layouts, why would we follow the same time frame.

An idea I am very fond of is that everyone’s journey is different, even the journey you had planned three years or months ago is different from the one you’re on now and that’s okay.

I’m going to be real with you, all I want is to be like the adorable couple I follow on Instagram (@parkingonthewildside) who live in their converted van up in the Netherlands and go foraging sometimes for fresh food.

Instead, I am here on this tire with my Freddie’s fries and Starbucks coffee, seemingly complaining about my slow build. Drop the complaining part and I’m doing just fine if I would stop comparing.

Maybe you aren’t converting a van right now, but the saying still applies to you. Everyone’s journey in life is different and that’s a beautiful thing. If we were all the same, that’d be pretty boring, and journalists would have some lame stories to write. Thanks for being different because if anything it makes my job easier and fun. So don’t compare and just do you.