One of the biggest things I’ve learned during my time commuting has been how to leave. I am not afraid to leave, to drop everything, even everyone, and go on to a new place and a new adventure. This ability to leave often comes into conflict with my deep sense of loyalty and creates a perfect storm around major decisions in my life. The inner turmoil that is created by the tug of war between the opportunity, adventure, and freedom of what lies ahead and the loyalty to what I will be leaving wreaks havoc on me and everyone around me as I seek them out for advice and answers.
I almost always leave. The words that I hear most consistently in my head at times like these are, “I would rather regret the things I did than the things I didn’t do.” The notion that I will eventually regret the opportunity that I passed over wins out and I’m off again.
As I pack my suitcases and say my goodbyes, the reality of what I’m leaving stares me in the face and visions of what could have been if I had stayed take their last shots at my confidence in my decision. As I drag my heavy bags through yet another airport and stand in long security lines waiting to be patted down, I wonder what the hell is wrong with me. I think about the place and the life I just left and wonder if I’m not certifiably crazy for trading it in for this…again.
Then, it happens. Somewhere over an ocean, at some point between the first drink service and the start of the second movie, I start to get excited about arriving. Doubt gets sidelined by thoughts of possibilities and adventure. As the hours pass now, my excitement grows and by the time we touch down I feel like I could bounce off the plane. When I pick up my bags from the belt they barely weigh anything. I head toward the exit and take a deep breath of new, fresh air. I have arrived. I am alive.