How do you say goodbye to something you’ve known your whole life? Having the courage to completely walk away from everything you have become accustomed to in pursuit of starting over. It’s an extraordinarily hard thing to do in the process of finding a life that can exceed your satisfaction.
Because that kind of life DOES exist. Don’t kid yourself. There is always something more out there for you if you are willing to put everything you know behind you.
Sometimes that’s what it takes to find that life. A blank sheet – wide open to new ideas and experiences that you never saw your life crossing paths with. A mentality of taking on whatever comes your way and letting it affect your life however it wants to.
But it is onerous to take on a life decision that heavy. You’re going to have to leave behind so much. Every routine, every reputation, every shortcut – every detail that made your life easier back home has to be set back to the very beginning. You’re starting from ground zero and you’re all alone to figure out every new aspect of your life that awaits.
It can be an intimidating feeling – especially leaving for the first time. It’s an unknown world and an unknown life and no matter how much research you do, you will only become comfortable once you see for yourself. You’ll only be able to trust once you’ve been there and done that.
You’re not running away from anything, but it feels like you’re leaving everything behind. How are you supposed to deal with that weight on your shoulders?
Finding the Courage
It’s a new start. A new life with all new possibilities. Caught staring up at the stars in the night sky; wondering what the universe has to offer, waiting for what’s to come. There’s nothing you can do but wonder.
You’re leaving family and friends, places, and memories that have all culminated into the person you have become today. You could be leaving for an indefinite period with no idea when you’ll return. The feeling of not knowing when you’ll return to the place you call home is emotional.
Maybe you’re leaving for a pre-determined amount of time. For my first time abroad, I left for Europe with a round-trip ticket planning to return home in four months. A year later, I had one unused plane ticket and still hadn’t left the European continent amidst one of the greatest life-changing experiences of my life.
The moral of the story is you just never know where life will take you. A potential life-changing experience is a lot of pressure to have on your shoulders. And there’s very good reason to believe it will be the most positive thing to happen to you yet.
Right now, my emotions are stirring over the fact that in one month I’m boarding a plane to Europe with no return ticket. There are plans in mind, but nothing is set in stone. I want to be wide open for an opportunity or experience to sweep me off my feet. I don’t know if I’ll ever return to live in the U.S. or not.
My family, in particular, is having a difficult time understanding the move for me. They support my desire, but it is understandably hard saying goodbye to a son/brother/grandson for an indefinite amount of time. I’m having trouble coping with the fact that this could be as permanent as it gets.
Sticking to It
I know there’s so much to look forward to, and yet, I’m having a hard time believing I’m making the right decision. Six months ago, I was sure of it. As time keeps ticking and my departure day keeps creeping up, it’s getting progressively harder coming to terms with my decision.
I know there is a lot of unknown details that are putting my mind into an uneasy state. But truth be told, I think that is what a lot of us who make the decision to uproot are looking for.
Craving the unknown is how we cope with leaving everything we have come to know. We are leaving, but there is a feeling of security knowing that there will always be a place we can come back to.
I’m leaving the United States indefinitely and a part of me hopes I never live here again. But a part of me knows I have a home to come back to if I need it. And that is how I am able to say goodbye to all that I have become accustomed to up until this point in my life.
It’s a bittersweet feeling. I know there is so much that awaits and yet I can’t help to feel uneasy about it all. It’s not the easy move, but it’s the right move. It’s time to say goodbye.
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