On this July 4th, as an American expat living abroad, I recognize that I have a great freedom. Not all have this freedom, and therefore it only seems suitable to acknowledge it and appreciate it.

God has granted all of us freedom to choose what to make of ourselves, but some governments allow their citizens more freedom than others.

For example, as an American, I am grateful that I have a US passport that allows me the freedom to travel the world without many limitations. I have realized that traveling freely among many nations is a great privilege that not all international citizens enjoy.

I am grateful for an American income that helps my $$ go further in many other countries. I appreciate the ability to take my job with me, wherever that may be.

I am grateful for a privileged upbringing that gave me not only an education, but also the insight and inspiration to desire more from life than simply consumption and consumerism.

I have the freedom to choose!  And American or not–most of you reading this also have the freedom to choose, as well!

For some, that choice leads them down a completely different path from us–one that is certainly more “in the box” than we have chosen. But that is the beauty of it….

We each have the opportunity to decide what is best for us, for our happiness, and we have the freedom to pursue those goals that help us become the people we want to be. Not what someone else wants us to be–but what makes us each downright giddy inside!

What’s your passion in life? Studying to be a doctor?! Making Roman Shades (*wink*wink*)?! Performing on a stage?! Taking long naps?!

For us, this excitement is found by Living Outside of the Box that most of the Western world has established as the acceptable social norm.

This choice has allowed us to finally let go of all of the “baggage” that has been weighing us down, pack our lives up in only backpacks, and head out on a round-the-world trip with the most beautiful and brightest kids on the planet (okay–I am a bit biased. But they are sooo stinkin’ cute, aren’t they?)!!

This means that we can choose to learn in the way that is most effective for us–by touching, feeling, seeing, and experiencing life in a way that can’t be done via books or television!

We can choose to meet people from around the world with different cultural backgrounds, find commonalities that connect us, and make new friendships that surpass the depth of “let’s hang out and watch a movie.”

We have been blessed with the freedom to choose what we want to make of ourselves–and to MAKE IT!

What will you choose?


This blog post was part of a writing project done with a group of traveling families. To read what others around the world have to say about what freedom means to them, check out these fantastic bloggers:

Let Freedom Ring – The Nomadic Family – http://thenomadicfamily.com/2012/07/let-freedom-ring-decapos-inspiration

 Are we free? – Living Differently – http://liveagainsttheflow.wordpress.com/2012/07/04/are-we-free/

 Freedom and Straying off the Beaten Path – Barts Go Adventuring – http://bartsgoadventuring.com/2012/07/04/freedom-and-straying-off-the-beaten-path/

Living a Free and Meaningful Life –  Flashpacker Family – http://flashpackerfamily.com/living-a-free-and-meaningful-life/

 Freedom to Roam – A Minor Diversion – http://www.minordiversion.com/2012/07/freedom-to-roam-this-fourth-of-july

What is Freedom? –  Family on Bikes – http://familyonbikes.org/blog/2012/07/what-is-freedom/

Do you know what Freedom is? – Bohemian Travelers – http://www.bohemiantravelers.com/2012/07/do-you-know-what-freedom-is.html

 Free Falling – Break Out of Bushwick – http://breakoutofbushwick.org/?p=1050

10 Responses to “The Freedom to Choose”

  1. Well said! I think traveling really highlights the ways we are so fortunate to have been born American!

  2. love it. the freedom to choose. let go of the baggage, and touch, feel, see the world around you. yes! love it. honored to share this post with you guys. who knew that if you add something to your blog title, it changes it’s name? now i know. here’s our new link. 🙂 http://thenomadicfamily.com/2012/07/let-freedom-ring-decapos-inspiration

    ps: i love the pine tree favicon. adorable!

  3. Great post! Being free to make a choice of what is right for you at whatever time in your life your at is great, no matter what that choice is 😉

  4. What an interesting life you lead. I look forward to reading more.

  5. Love it! After spending so many years living in other countries, I can totally appreciate the freedom we have to make our own life what we want it to be. It saddens me that so few actually do that.

    • Isn’t that the truth? So many people don’t even see the choices in front of them…or they are not willing to make the sacrifices to do it. We all make sacrifices…no matter what the choice is…something is left behind, but something is gained!

  6. Of course there’s nothing wrong with filling your life by staring at the window admiring your wonderful roman blinds, so long as that’s a conscious choice and you’re happy with it. I’ve got to say, I’d much rather be living outside of that box too.

    Filling your families life with marvelous experiences, experiencing life first hand is a fantastic gift for your children.

    I can only hope to be as free as you are. For the moment, we’re still penned into our little box by our whopping, great big house.

  7. Love the wink at me for the Roman Shades! Yay for Freedom! And isn’t it so nice that we’re not all the same?


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  2. Living a Free and Meaningful Life | Flashpacker Family - [...] The Freedom to Choose – Alisa at Living Outside of the Box [...]
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  4. Freedom and straying off the beaten path | The Barts Go Adventuring - [...] The Freedom to Choose – Living Outside of the Box [...]
  5. What is freedom? | Family on Bikes - [...] Freedom Ring Are we free? The Freedom to Choose Freedom and straying off the beaten path Living a Free…
  6. Free Falling | Break out of Bushwick: Where a novelist/single mom and her kid plan the trip of a lifetime - [...] The Freedom to Choose – Living Outside of the Box [...]
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  8. Are we free? | Heather Costaras / HAT - […] Living Outside of the Box – The Freedom to Choose […]

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