One Day Until Departure: Lots of Tears

by Kim on May 21, 2012 · 85 comments

There are times in life when you feel like you control the strings and other times when you feel like you’ve been sucked beneath a wave, tumbling and turning in the vast grayblue of the underwater.  In these moments it does not matter how badly you want to right yourself.  It does not matter how much you want to break the surface and come up for air. You tumble and turn and you wait for the sea to lift you up again.

It is during these moments that you glimpse a universal truth: You do not really have control over anything.  Or, only this: Do you thrash and fight the current or do you calm yourself and wait in the quiet between heartbeats for your body to break the surface once again?

I want so badly to tell you all how I am feeling, only one day until we step into this next phase of our lives.  But transitions are messy and more than anything today just seem surreal.  I know we are leaving tomorrow but it does not seem like we are really leaving.  I know that I have left my job, but I feel like I’m just on vacation.  I know that I have entered a new chapter of my life but I don’t really know it.  My body hasn’t caught up and my brain can’t quite adjust.  I feel like I’m just knocking around beneath the sea, somersaulting, waiting to come up for air.

I should be excited for our journey; I’ve wanted this for so long.  But, today, I mostly just feel sad.  I’m sad to leave our wonderful life in Portland, sad to leave our dogs, sad to leave our friends.  It’s heartbreaking to walk away from all of this.  I say to myself:  Look around, Kim. Look at this great life you’re leaving. How could you have possibly been so unfulfilled?  I ask myself: What if you’re fooling yourself by believing that something more exists out there for you?  I believe that we have made the right choice, but I’d be lying if I did not tell you that I question the decision often.  Today, I question it more than ever.

I’m scared, too.  It scares me that we’ve given all of our possessions away.  It scares me that I don’t have a job or a paycheck.  I’m scared that our car will crash or our plane will crash or I that will fall off a mountain.  I’m still scared of those damn grizzly bears.  I’ll spare you a complete chronicle of my fears but trust me when I say it is a long list.

It’s weird to want something for so long and then to suddenly have it.  It doesn’t feel like you’d think it would feel.  It doesn’t feel all amazing. It’s a little like finishing a marathon.  It feels great to cross the finish line, but in that moment that’s all it really is- it’s just crossing an arbitrary line.  You don’t instinctively think of the miles and hard work and pain and sweat and tears that went into getting there.  Only afterwards in the days and months that follow do you really come to understand what you did.  When you crossed that line, you accomplished what you did not think you could accomplish and no one can take that away from you.  It’s a win you hold on to for the rest of your life.

In the same manner, I know that Brian and I will not look back on our life and wish that we did not take this time to see the world.  I know that we will not look back and wag a judgmental finger at these years we are giving ourselves to chase our dreams.  I know that we won’t regret it.  But it’s just so hard to say goodbye.

I’ll leave you with some photos of our going away party on Saturday.  It was such a treat to have all of our friends gathered in one place.  Even the weather held out for us.  It was a wonderful day.

Kim and Carmel. We met through the blog and she has become a good friend.

The crowd plays bingo.  The winners won our old stuff!

Old neighbors and friends Jo, Ollie and Leo

Wendy: My dear friend, running buddy and store-er of our crap in her basement.

The sun went down but we remained in the park… until we got booted by the cops.

The day after: This stuff and four Rubbermaid containers are all we own in the world.