Saying Goodbye to Full-Time Travel

Jessica Swanda
9 min readApr 1, 2020

After 28 months of living like nomads, traveling the country selling chicken, and answering the question “So what do you do all day?,” we are officially saying goodbye to full-time travel. (Part of me still can’t believe we ever said hello to such a crazy thing to begin with, but here we are now, with a wealth of experiences and travel stories to prove that we did.)

It may seem like this transition back to “normal” life should be an easy thing that we’re looking forward to without an ounce of trepidation. But our exit from LDP (this travel program) isn’t looking exactly like what we’d always imagined it would — we thought we’d only be heading back to Georgia for a few months and then off to wherever our future restaurant would be, we thought we’d have a pretty good idea of where that might be by now, we didn’t expect to be exiting with a baby well on the way, and we certainly never imagined we would be settling back down into a completely unsettled world that’s reeling from a world-wide pandemic. But we are trusting that none of this is outside of God’s control. He is surprised by none of it, and He has a path in mind for us. And we are so very ready for a home that doesn’t change every few months or less, for a community we don’t have to abandon just as often, for the chance to live near family and close friends for the first time in our marriage, and for some stability.

This transition feels like a momentous moment — perhaps even more significant than the moment when we began this journey. Because this leaving is final. We’ll never again live with only what we can fit in heavy duty tubs from Lowe’s, stay over one hundred nights in a row in the same hotel, or have to explain to people “Well, we just moved here. And we’re actually going to be moving again in a month or so. See, we move a lot for work.”

To be honest, I won’t miss any of those things, but there are a few things I will look back on fondly — the instant bond that’s forged between us and the people we meet who travel with us, those moments where we all crack LDP jokes and find some relief in sharing this journey with someone else who finds it equally wild, the excitement that accompanies the stress of moving somewhere brand new, the sweetness that accompanies the scariness of Kaleb and I taking on the world alone but together, and the satisfaction of…

Jessica Swanda

Freelance writer. Travels the USA full time with her husband. Writes about travel, faith, books, and business. More about me: