Quarter Life Epiphany : Melissa

Today’s Quarter Life Epiphany brought to you by: Melissa

Life in the Rockies


Hi –insert your name here-,

Yes I am talking to you dear reader.  It’s nice to meet you.  I am Melissa Giroux and originally, from Quebec, Canada.  I am a backpacker full time since June 2014 and a travel blogger at abrokenbackpack.com. I am old.  Okay, maybe not.  I am 26 years old. I am currently enjoying Australia on a long term trip.  In June 2014, I left everything behind to travel for two months.  So far… I never came back.  I quit my day to day job as a social worker and a travel agent to live the dream.Crappy job

What advice would you giveyourself at 20? And at 25?

I wish I could have known all of this when I was 20:

  • You are too young to be unhappy. If you have a dream, stop dreaming about it and go out there;
  • Even if you are “sure” about some stuff, it will change;
  • Don’t get crazy with credit cards, it’s not your money;
  • You don’t need to settle down just yet.

I wish I could have known this when I was 25:

  • Don’t compare your lifestyle with others: your life; your choices;
  • You are still young, so don’t freak out!


What does a quarter life epiphany mean to you?

I think it’s a big turn in your life.  When I turned 25, I was completely devastated (and excited at the meantime cause I booked a flight to Hawaii on that day!). I mean, it’s a good timing to ask yourself some questions about what you really want. I am so happy that I spent that year away from my typical categorized life daring adventures. So, I guess it probably means happiness.


What was your quarter life epiphany?

Here is the story, I turned 25 years old, with my flights booked to go to Vancouver and then to Hawaii for a few days.  The plan was to go to Western Canada to improve my English for two months.  I was supposed to come back home after two months.  My plans were falling apart for this “coming back”. I am one of those who think that if life doesn’t go right, turn left. I saw an opportunity to fly to Australia as it was cheaper from there and here I am.  Bonus: I fell in love with another backpacker on the road.


What do you think inspired your quarter life epiphany?

Two years ago, I quit my job and sold everything to go on a long term trip in Europe. While I was in Turkey, only 6 weeks later, something happened (you can find more about this long story on my blog) and I had to go back to Canada.  My dream was destroyed and I was totally desperate.  When I left for this two months trip, I had commitment back home and I had no idea that, this time, it would be the one.


How are you different now than before your quarter life epiphany?

I am different according to my friend or family from home.  But, truly, I know I am not different.  I am only the person I was meant to be.  It’s just too easy to get in a routine with all other’s expectations. Traveling make me rediscover myself and let me be the one I want to be.

What advice would you give to others who want to make a major change in their life?

Don’t let the fear decide for you.


What challenges have you faced, and how have you overcome them?

I have a big money challenge as I still pay some debts from home (I had a lot of fun with my student loan and I made some mistakes when I was younger). Working abroad is a really good way to live the dream while being responsible.

Working abroad is also a huge challenge as you end up with “crappy” jobs most of the time. I have a diploma back home and I am not using it while I am travelling.  But, I accepted it.


What do you wish more people realized?

Life is too short to be unhappy…

What advice would you give to someone having a quarter life crisis?

It’s normal!  You have two options now:

  1. Decide to postpone this crisis;
  2. Make sure you will not get another one by making some massive changes.

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Life in Australia

I ALWAYS travel solo so I don’t have to let my travel buddies behind again.

But I AM NOT travelling solo ANYMORE, because I fell in love with another traveler.


I get through long flights by…

cutting my sleep in half for a few days before so I can sleep on the plane.


The cause that really gets me riled up is….

that everybody is settling down and I am so not ready for that kind of life.


When traveling, I always miss…

the poutine (a super good Quebecker meal!).


I REALLY want to visit…

too many places that I can’t even write a bucket list.


Best travel tip?

Avoid the crowd and find a secret local spot!


Best packing tip?

Panty liners for these gorgeous female travelers; it will save some laundry later!

Worst travel experience? What did you learn?

My Turkey story; How to be safer as a solo female traveler and how Facebook can be dangerous.

Current city versus home city? What’s different between the two?

Millaa Milaa, Australia VS Gatineau, Canada means: Cows, big fields, rainforests VS City, family and friends.

Favorite place to live?

Sydney, Australia

(A cheeky one: Canmore, Western Canada).

Favorite place to visit?

The non-touristic Greek Islands!

Life in Australia 2


Melissa Giroux Bio

Melissa Giroux is originally from Quebec, Canada.  She is a full time backpacker and a travel blogger at abrokenbackpack.com. Travelling since June 2014, she is currently in Australia on a long term trip.  Follow her broken stories as a traveler with debts and massives doses of craziness.

Visit her and show her some love!

Mel’s Blog – A Broken Backpack






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