25-year-old Jinna Yang lost her father to stomach cancer two years ago. Although completely devastated by the loss, she decided that it was not too late to travel the world with her dad. So she set out on the biggest trip of her lifetime, accompanied by a life-size cardboard cutout of her father’s image, to show him all the places he had wanted to visit during his lifetime.
Jinna Yang’s was one of those ultimate career chasing people. Eternally busy and not taking enough time to enjoy the world and her family. Working her corporate job in New York left her with little time or energy to cope with her Dad’s death – and it took a drastic toll on her.
“I had reached the point where I lost the will to live,” she writes in her blog Grease & Glamour.
“I gave up on my dreams,” she continues. “I shut myself off from my loved ones and close friends. I developed alopecia and lost my hair at an alarming rate, where on bald spot the size of a dime turned into six half-dollar-sized ones all over my head within three weeks.”
“One day I woke up and made the decision to take back control of my life. I bought a one-way ticket to Iceland, inspired by the hundreds of Pinterest images and travel blogs I read online. I stopped buying shoes to try to mask my pain. I sold 80% of my disgustingly huge closet for extra cash. I decided not to renew my lease on my apartment. I left my job with no Plan B. I bought a backpack, stuffed it with my DSLR, laptop and a few changes of clothes. I left everything in New York City to travel the world for the first time with a lifesize cutout of my dad.”
“My father never had the chance to travel the world. He sacrificed his entire life for others – his parents, his children, his wife, his family and his friends. At 51, he was diagnosed with cancer, just one year before his own father passed away from the disease. Before he had the chance to realize his own dreams, cancer took him from the world and it was the hardest thing that we had ever been through, individually and as a family.”
But even though he is not here in the flesh, I knew he was with us in spirit. To share his story, and to help bring peace to my stepmother, my 22-year-old brother, my 9-year-old sister, and myself, I took him with me all over Europe to be photographed together in front of some of the world’s most iconic destinations.
“I hope my story will inspire you to take a chance, and to never give up hope,” Yang writes. “For years I chased success and sacrificed happiness, but success lives where happiness lies. Don’t chase success, chase happiness and success will come. Happy Father’s Day to you all.” she concludes.
That’s the spirit and a great reminder for all the ‘career chasers’ that postpone everything they want to do to an indefinite point in the future.
The future is NOW!!
Go do some kickass travels and adventures!
Cardboard Cutout to Plastic Mannequins
On a less serious note some people have taken their pets across the world, sent their kids’ toys into outer space or even taken a Lego toy man on a trip around the world. Suzanne Heitz took it even one step further by taking a ‘family’ of plastic mannequins along on her travels and documenting it in a similar kickass way as Yang did with her ‘cardboard father’.