Many things begin and end in my life, but never did I ever think I’d choose to be unemployed. Sure I expected to be fired or made redundant in my working career, but never willfully decide to have no means of making a crust. Still on Friday the 9th of April I did just that, became unemployed by my own hand.
I imagined my last day at work to be a lazy quiet day full of reflection and friendly banter with my work mates, in reality it was the same as every other day. Such a pivotal moment where I change from my old life into my new life and I just walked out the door of work like I always did. Somewhat anti-climatic given how long I had waited for the moment to arrive.
It wasn’t till I had packed up my life in Ballarat and was driving home yesterday to spend two weeks with my parents that I finally felt it. That emotion you can’t describe no matter how many ways you try too. Merging joy and fear, happiness with sadness, the building up to something great yet not being able to comprehend that greatness.
I find myself stuck in limbo, not knowing whether to doubt myself or run kicking and screaming into the unknown. One moment I am filled with excitement about being finished work and being so close to boarding a plane. Then I think back to work and how I will miss my clients and the people I worked with.
Still amongst all the emotions I keep coming back to a quote one of my suppliers said to me as I said my goodbyes and he wished me all the best.
Better to regret something you did, than something you never did…
Perhaps when confronted with such a life changing moment you just need to check your emotions at the door and go with it. Don’t try to understand it or reason out every feeling and mood. Just absorb everything around you, trust in what your doing and take a leap of faith.
After all once my bum is on that plane destined for Paris there will be no time for second guessing or what if moments.
I think you are going to do just fine and once you get out there, you won’t look back! Leaving my career and moving abroad was the best decision I ever made. There will be an adjustment period while you are traveling, but just recognize it for what it is and enjoy! You are doing something that 90% of the rest of the world can only dream about. Live it, love it, write about it, and cherish the memories when it is over and you have “settled down” somewhere new. When you get older and look back on this adventure – my guess is it will never make your list of regrets!
Good luck and looking forward to following along in your adventure. And if you do decide to squeeze Taiwan in somehow, be sure to let me know! 🙂
Hey Erin, thankyou so much. I really can’t wait to get out there but also am very conscious of the fact I have no idea what I’m doing.
Gimme a week on the road to adjust to everything and I’ll be fine for sure. Just need to survive that initial OMG moment.
Well said — maybe because I’m so close, I could imagine and feel and relate to every single thing you said. Really nice post, Chris. Perhaps my favorite one so far!
.-= Heather´s last blog ..noplacelikeoz: Didn’t get it for free, but just booked my Qantas flight from ASP to SYD for only $110. Was able to use miles to cover most of the cost! =-.
awwww thanks so much Heather. I almost didn’t write this post after spending all night trying to put into words what I wanted to say.
You’ve made my night, wish I was going to still be here in Australia to catch up with you.
I like this quote: “Don’t try to understand it or reason out every feeling and mood.”
I tend to be the opposite, attempting to parcel every minute detail to understand the why of it all. But I think this is a good tactic to try.
Good luck Chris. I don’t think you’ll regret a thing.
.-= Keith´s last blog ..Travel Gems or Fool’s Gold? =-.
Thanks heaps Keith. Maybe I should be following your lead, after all you’ve got more travelling under your belt than I.
Amen, I couldn’t agree with that statement any more! I try to live my life without any regret at all. Trust me, the second you step off that plane in Paris you will have NO regrets!!! I’m sure the moment you walked out of your office for good was sooo surreal. Enjoy your last days with your family mate. Bon voyage!
.-= Andi´s last blog ..Brasil: Day 9 =-.
Thanks heaps Andi. No regrets will be my way of thinking from now on. I don’t want to miss out on anything if I can help it.
Wow.. Chris, you’re so deep. 🙂 Seriously, this is a tear-jerking, puppy dog post and I love what you said about just absorbing the gamut of emotions. Too often we force conclusions, when there’s nothing wrong with your excitement or sadness – all part of the process. Cause what you’re going through is a process. No room for negative or positive IMO. Just stay zen and all will be well!
Can’t wait for your landing day!
.-= Nomadic Chick´s last blog .. =-.
aww thanks Jeannie. I’m looking forward to getting on that plane. Then it will be just me and my backpack oh and Europe to explore 🙂
I felt the same way when I left my job on April 2–walking out the door just like I did every other day at 5, but this time, I would never be coming back. It’s a weird feeling, but all I can do is hope it’s worth it (and that I figure out a way to not go broke!)
Hey Christine, I hear you on the going broke thing. I’ve worked so long so that I would never have to worry about money. Money would go into savings and stay there until it was needed.
Now I’m leaving the country with no income and will have to watch my savings dwindle to nothing. This is really going to be a push the boundaries moment.
Oh, Chris, I think your supplier was so right. You made the best decision. Imagine what life would be like if we all just sat around wondering “what if….”
And it’s great you’re hanging out with family before you embark. They must really support you in what you’re doing. That’s so healthy and good. I’m sure you’ll have the time of your life.
.-= Sabina´s last blog ..Springtime in the City – New York’s Central Park =-.
Sabina, I spent a good portion of my life sitting around wondering what if. This whole trip and change in life will be about reclaiming those lost years and missed opportunities.
My mum would love nothing more for me to stay home with her but she understands that I really want to do this. I love my family a great deal and being away from them will be difficult.
Coming home to help dad out whether its in the garden or building onto the shed, I love it. Mum always cooks up my favorite meals and loves to chat. So much will be missed…
Well said mate. Good luck on your travels!
.-= Matt´s last blog ..A Local’s Perspective: Washington, DC =-.
Thanks Matt. I hope I can get out there and maybe even make a video or two just like yourself.
Ah, the pre-trip emotional roller coaster, I remember it well! I was a wreck going from tears to manic highs within minutes of each other and many moments (hours) of a numb, dream-like state.
The night before I left I spent with my sister and best friend. Until she was walking out my door to go home it really didn’t hit me that I wouldn’t see her for a very long time. I don’t think any hug between us was as emotional as that one.
I went through the same gut-wrenching emotional wirlwind the next morning with my best friend as I headed toward the airport gates.
I’d say to go with it… experience and truly feel every moment, the highs, the lows and the in-betweens. Knowing that you made it through something so massive makes you feel like you have the strength for the adventures ahead.
.-= Catia | Vagabond Roots´s last blog ..Teotihuacán, Mexico – ‘Where Men Become Gods’ =-.
Oh Catia, there will be lots of lows. My mother will have me in tears at the airport.
Without all the fan-fair and so forth it wouldn’t be the same. I’ll enjoy it all and remember it always.
Life’s too short to second guess. You either do it or you don’t. You should live a life worth writing about.
And like you once said, if you ever feel like crap come talk to me. I’ll make it all better. 😉
.-= Monica´s last blog ..I’m Guest Bartending In New York City! =-.
I agree Monica. haha I said that, god what a douche I am 🙂
I haven’t had a last day of work in a long time, but you described it well. Oh, I am so excited for you! The countdown is happening so fast… You’ll be in Paris before you know it! I can’t wait until you post your first picture with you and your backpack — on your way!! AHHHH EEEEK!!!!!!!!!!
.-= Abby´s last blog ..My poker-playing, China-living brother checks in =-.
Hey Abby. Tell me about it way way too fast. These 2 weeks were suppose to be relaxing and a chance to finalise everything. Now I find myself feeling very rushed. Oh it will be so much slower once I’m abroad… I hope.
Everyone loves the emotional Aussie Nomad here! ha Well in all seriousness, I battle moments of uncertainty too, about making a big and different leap. Actually, reading some of your tweets and posts leading up to your trip inspired me to write my “travel hesitation” post. It is only human. Obviously it’s hard to break a routine, but for some reason, you wanted to break it. That is how I have to think of it at least. Something spurred you to want to change. That squashes uncertainty I think. The minute you land in Paris, I think you will be brought back to that moment you decided to change everything around. Can’t wait to read about that moment!
.-= Suzy´s last blog ..Suzy Stumbles Over Travel: Week of April 12, 2010 =-.
haha Suzy I may sway a little in the emotional stakes but hey I wouldn’t be me if I didnt.
Glad I could be a form of inspiration for you, now I just need to channel your flair for words and I’ll be set.
Very true, I chose to do this and rain hail or shine I’ll be boarding that plane to Paris and not looking back.
.-= Chris´s last blog ..That Limbo Period =-.
I can’t imagine how it must feel but this helps to give me an idea. I’ve got to go through the same thing in 4 months time. I’m actually giving my notice in this week to give my boss a chance to get someone in and trained up before I go. Training a replacement will seem rather strange.
Enjoy your couple of weeks chill out time although I’m sure you’ll have plenty to do.
.-= Poi´s last blog ..Picture Special! Mount Snowdon, Wales. =-.
Hey Poi. I gave notice early so my boss had plenty of time to find my replacement and for me to train him up. The training part sucked but it was nice to know I could impart some of my skills onto someone else.
So far this chill out time has turned me into my dad’s slave. I’m loving every minute of it thought and I will miss not being around to help him out.
Good on you Chris. It’s a real struggle at first to comprehend it all, especially when you see everyone else carrying on with their lives. But then you realise that it’s all about you, and how your 2010 is going to be incredibly more invigorating than most.
You seem to have had a great experience at that job. That’s fantastic, but what’s better is knowing you’re taking on something you personally want to do, and trust me (well, us!), it’s worth every moment.
No excuses though, we want photos.
Gerard mate we are so going to have to catch up in Paris for a beer or 3 🙂
I know it’s all going to be worth it and provide me with an awesome list of stories to tell. I just need to get over there and live it.
Aww, great post! It’s a tough feeling, because there’s no more “normal” for you. People underestimate how much of life is looking forward to things, or even just knowing how you’re going to spend your day, and it’s hard when you don’t really know what to expect next. You will be more than fine, though!
.-= Lauren´s last blog ..The Letting Go =-.
Thanks a bunch Lauren. I know things will pan out and I’ll have a blast. Think I just need to survive the next 11 days and I’ll be set.
Looking forward to the start of your trip mate. Give everything time to simmer before, during and after, you’ll no doubt end up with thoughts and ideas you never considered you would have and thinking them through properly with perspective is important. Enjoy yourself.
.-= Dan – Voyagner´s last blog ..Travel Money Guide: Travel Debit and Credit Cards for Australians =-.
Thanks Dan. I’m all set to enjoy myself and taking that step off the plane in Paris will be one very joyous moment.
I’m waiting for this excact moment myself. Kudos on a good choice, you will probably never regret it! Looking forward to your travels!
haha thanks Samuel, I’ll probably not regret it hahaha
Great post Chris, and not an uncommon reaction I’m sure. Funny how those big monumental days turn out so differently, eh? I think you’ll REALLY feel it when you’re on your way around the world. 🙂
.-= Candice´s last blog ..It’s JUNOS Week in St. John’s! =-.
Thanks heaps Candice, I so struggled writing this post so for you to say its great has made my day.
I think your right, the really big bit will be getting on that plane and departing for Europe.
Oh my, I’m a month behind you Aussie Nomad! My last day is May 7. I’m sure I’ll go through some sort of emotional roller-coaster, but I think the day I resigned was the big hitter for me!
Reciting in the bathroom beforehand, heart pumping and desperately failing to control it with long breaths, and just getting up that nerve to go into the boss’s office to ask for a simple “chat”. Heart-attack moment.
And then after the hard part was over with, all the fears came rolling in. It’s funny how I hadn’t feared anything before then, now it’s everyday, but so is the excitement 🙂
Good luck on your trip – I look forward to reading more!
.-= Globetrooper Lauren´s last blog ..The carry-on-only philosophy =-.
Lauren I so hear you. The day I told work was major roller-coaster day. Made worse by the fact I had to tell them at a meeting with all the staff present.
It did feel great to have told them though and those fears afterword’s were very much good ones to have.
Where about’s are you off to? If its Europe we will have to catch up.
Hey definitely. But won’t be in Europe until next year, Canada and South America are first. Staying in Montreal for a while though, so we can practice our French together!
.-= Globetrooper Lauren´s last blog ..The carry-on-only philosophy =-.
Oh nice I think I’ll hit up Canada and the like after my stay in Europe is over. My french yes… it needs a LOT of practice.
Hi Chris………I literally just stumbled onto your blog. Not sure how I got here 🙂 I’ve been where you are. It’s a heady weird feeling. That was nine plus years ago, and all has worked out fine. I’m sure you will do fine. Enjoy every moment!
.-= Nancie (Ladyexpat)´s last blog ..Friday’s Talking Photo #8 From the Sandbox — Thai Hill Tribe Lady =-.
Hey Nancie. Thanks for stumbling in 🙂 It’s been a great first week and now with less than 7 days till I fly out (hopefully, damn volcano) I’m getting excited.
Hi Chris, I found your site a few months ago after excessive googling of the application processs of the Youth Mobility Visa – very helpful and detailed!
I leave for the UK in 2 days, and just wanted to let you know your blog is inspiring! Especially the last bit about checking your emotions at the door, it sucks that I am going to miss everyone, but your blog reminded me that I am about to embark on a great journey with the most exciting years of my life just around the corner so missing all my friends and fam will be well worth it. Thanks!! 🙂
Hi Mona, thanks a lot for stopping by to have a read and I’m glad you got something from it. Travelling has been such a great experience for myself in all ways possible.
I wish you luck on your travels and if your stopping around London for a bit be sure to give me a shout, I’m always up for a beer and a chat.