© 2013 Connecting: Solo Travel Network & Kay Morris-Robertson. Information.
Note: This article is reproduced here for inspirational value alone and will not normally be updated.
Therefore, all facts, figures, and author's opinions are subject to change as time goes on.

A Journey from A to Zee

Text & Photos by Kay Morris-Robertson

One moment living the dream, the next a nightmare: This is my story of restoration after watching my husband die in my arms at age 32.

When I left London and went to Los Angeles in the autumn of 2007, I felt like the world was my oyster. Kay Morris-Robertson with husband JohnI was climbing up the corporate ladder, taking on an exciting new job and about to marry my soul mate. A year later, while sailing off the coast of California, my world came crashing down. My husband John suffered a cardiac event and passed away just six months after we were married. Traumatized and wrongly diagnosed with PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder), I found myself locked up in a psychiatric unit by the very company that had brought me to America. Instead of restoration my symptoms worsened and, eventually, I had to take the multi-billion dollar company to court to get the matter was settled.

Wanting to put the past behind me and get away from everything and everyone, I decided to begin my road to recovery by buying a RV. At first, I had an idea to just set-off with no clue on where to go. I thought I merely wanted freedom, but I soon realized I needed something more than aimless escape if I were to regain my former healthy outlook on life. I needed to undergo some sort of systematic rebuilding process, so I began by creating some rules.

1) I decided I would follow the alphabet in order, a, b, c, d, and so on.

2) I would visit no major towns or cities.

3) I would ask America to vote and whichever destination got the highest number of votes would be my next stop, even if that place was 3,000 miles in the opposite direction.

Kay Morris-Robertson and 'Reggie' the RV at Grand Canyon

I opened a Facebook account, set up a website, and with this basic structure to my plan, I began to feel good about myself for the first time in years. I was ready to put my plan in motion, so I hit the road, starting at A for Albuquerque. Then, simply through speaking to people along the way, votes came in via Facebook and my website. Buoyed by the encouragement, I made even bigger plans. By the time I set off for D, Daytona 500, I had decided to write a book and call it A to Zee Across America. Furthermore, I thought how great it would be to donate any proceeds to charities dealing with sudden cardiac death and PTSD – definitely an uplifting proposition for my morale as well as for the charities.

Three Years on the Road to Recovery

My solo journey of recovery rolled on for three years crisscrossing Americas' 50 Kay Morris-Robertson going dog-sleddingstates. I do have to say, there were a few hairy incidents and hard lessons learned. I did get robbed at knifepoint in Monterey California. In New Mexico, I had to use a baseball bat to chase away three intoxicated men trying to break into my RV. I was arrested in Michigan where I learned that having a tazer for self-defense is a no-no. And, there was that mad moment in Hawaii when I went running off a cliff and jumped into a deep lagoon. Getting out of that tricky situation not only taught me something about rock-climbing but also that cliff-diving alone is not too smart. But, hey! I survived every misadventure, and, in retrospect, they pale in memory compared to the countless positive, encouraging events that came my way.

Fairly early on, people started getting more involved than just voting by giving me small souvenirs. I received hats, stickers, and cuddly toys, and they all found a place on the side of my RV. Reggie, the "memorabilia-clad RV", has since taken on a life of its own in its new home at the Lemay Automobile Museum in Tacoma Washington where it is now on exhibit.

Traveling alone for three years brought me many enduring benefits, but the most significant has been regaining the self-confidence to believe in my abilities. By the time I finished at Zion National Park in Utah, I had 50 elementary schools following me – one in each state. I sent them postcards, which they used as a geography project. Now, I'm thrilled to know that my journey has become an inspiration to others who have suffered the effects of PTSD. And, as for me, I once again feel that the world is my oyster.

> A to Zee Across America is available for purchase at: Amazon.com
> Or visit Kay Morris-Robinson's website: A to Zee Across America

> > K M-R

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