For nearly 2 years now, we’ve been dreaming about the moment when we could quit our jobs, pack up our things and get on airplane and never look back. The dream got us through difficult times at work and in life. Thoughts of beaches in Bali kept us warm during freak snowstorms. Itinerary planning, travel gear research and thoughts of endless possibilities are what we held on to to keep us sane.
So I was surprised at how I felt when I walked out of my office for the last time last Friday. I liked my job and had wonderful co-workers and supportive bosses. It wasn’t my dream job, but it paid well and it was a pleasant place to be. Still, I always knew I would not be there long term. I would sit at my desk daydreaming about the moment when I would walk out the door and NEVER COME BACK and how free and amazing that would feel. Instead, I found myself feeling remarkably sad and empty as I passed through the lobby. I’m going to miss the friends I made there more than I realized. I understand now that in all my daydreaming about our adventure, I had pushed aside all of the people and places that I love that we’re leaving behind.
Mrs. Banh Mi has been processing this for months. We’re on opposite tracks. She had her last day at work earlier this week and we had a going away party last night. She’ll miss all her friends terribly, but I think now that she’s had a chance to say her goodbyes she is TRULY ready to go. Now that I’m only just starting to think of what I’ll miss, I’m realizing that I’m not as ready to go as I thought. I know that I will be — I HAVE to be — but this process might just be slightly more difficult than just packing up and getting on the plane.
Overall, though, I am happy we’re leaving. I’d much rather leave somewhere thinking it was too soon than leave somewhere knowing I stayed too long. The internet is littered with the travel blogs of people who are doing exactly what we are doing — quitting jobs, packing up and just GOING. They’re filled with pictures of exotic locations, all the neat stuff that’s in their packs, and all about HOW GREAT OF A TIME THEY ARE HAVING. We’re going to write about that stuff too. Still, I’m happy to put down some thoughts here as a record of the fact that while I might not know what lies in our future, I fully appreciate everything that we’re leaving behind.
To all of our friends, this isn’t “goodbye forever” — it’s “smell ya later.” We love (most of) you.