The short version is: My lease is up at the end of August, my roommate is moving in with his fiance, and I really can't afford to live on my own around here on what I earn. All things considered, this seems like a good time to pull up stakes and move to somewhere with a lower cost of living, and closer to more of my friends and more of the activities I've gotten involved with.
So here's my plan. By the end of August, all my furniture and most of my possessions will move into storage. I will move in with local friends for two months. At the end of October, I will leave my job. November is for vacation. I plan to travel and visit for the entire month, more or less. I have a few stops in mind already, but if you want me to come see you, let me know before I set my itinerary. In December, I will move in with friends in PA and start looking for a new job.
-- In both cases, the friends in question are on board with the plan. I'm withholding names, but they can feel free to identify themselves. Besides, if you know them, you know who it'll be anyway, and if you don't know them it doesn't matter.
-- Why give my boss more than four months notice? Well, I've been there close to twelve years (the anniversary is in October, which is one of the reasons I'm planning to stay until then). I'm also the only employee. It takes time to hire, and a LOT of time to train someone to be good. Trying to transmit the amount of institutional knowledge that lives in my brain could take a couple of YEARS, not just months. By leaving, I'm choosing to do what's best for me. By giving him this much time, I'm making the best possible effort to avoid damage to the business when I go. That's the only way I can live with myself. And he does appreciate it.
-- Am I aware that December is a bad time to find a job? Sure. I fully expect it to take at least several months to find something. I have savings. But it's not a bad time to *start* looking.
This is terrifying. I don't do well with change, and this is changing a great number of things in my life all at once. It feels like jumping off a cliff, without knowing what's at the bottom or even how far away the bottom might be. But I have a plan, which I've run by a number of people. I have enough savings to carry me for a little while. And I have wonderful, amazingly supportive friends and family who will help me get by, in body and in spirit.
I wasn't planning to tell Joe tonight, when I'm looking at a weekend home alone cleaning the house. I was planning to make it next week, and then flee to somewhere else with something to distract me. But in the last couple of days, doubt and anxiety were creeping up on me and I started second-guessing the whole thing. By the end of this weekend, I might have talked myself out of it. So, now I'm committed to the jump.
I'm excited about all the potential of my future. I'm also nervous, and terrified. But this is going to be a good thing.
(crossposted to Facebook)