It's the night before I leave for Europe for 6 weeks and it still hasn't quite sunk in. I'm staying with my parents in New York State so it mostly just feels like a summer during college or a long weekend away from DC. Maybe it'll hit me on the plane? Maybe it'll be 3 weeks before it really sinks in. Technology makes it so easy to check in these days that maybe it'll never feel like I'm really gone at all! I can even check on our dog via the webcam at her daycare. And yes, she's still adorable even on a low res webcam.
Everyone I've talked to has been so supportive of my choice to take this time off. I had been worried that people would judge me as young and fickle for quitting my job or naive for thinking I could travel alone and that's probably what's kept me from doing it for the past 3 years. That and the whole "finding a new job" thing but I had finally gotten to the point where I didn't care anymore. I didn't care what people thought and I didn't care how hard it was to find a new job, I just couldn't keep going the way things were anymore. Anyone who says, "I'd die to work from home!" has never done it for 2 years in a place where they have no roots (aka friends). But desperation can also be a really freeing place to be. Suddenly you can do anything in the world, free of judgment and pressure.
So here I am. Tomorrow starts a new adventure and a new chapter of my life in which I get to step out into the world, see places I've only dreamed about and interact with people I would never normally have the opportunity to meet. World, meet Shmoni.