I’ve just quit a job that I love to go travelling indefinitely. This is how I’m feeling…

Wednesday 19th April

It’s 11.30pm on an evening in the Easter Holidays and I’m lay in bed in the spare room of my parents home, thousands of thoughts racing through my mind. Emma awake at 11.30pm, you exclaim? I can’t sleep and this is why: rather than book a flight home from our summer trip to the USA, I’ve booked an onwards flight… to Taiwan.

As I’m sure many of you know, I love to travel. I also love to teach. Fortunately the two are quite compatible due to the lengthy teaching holidays. However, recently I’ve realised something… although I’m far from old, I’m not getting any younger. My friends are buying homes and starting families and although this isn’t something that I desire just yet, soon I’m sure it will be. I’ve started to wonder if in the next 5 years I’ll be able to see all the places that I want to see over 5 summer holidays – realistically probably not. I’ve also started to wonder what it would be like to travel without rushing and explore a place in depth. I’ve wondered what it would be like to live and work in a foreign country.

There has been a lot of soul searching and a lot of difficult questions asked but it’s come to this point. The point where I’ve realised that honestly, I’m more afraid to stay than I am to leave. Life is too short to look back and think ‘I wish I’d done that.’

So here I am. It’s now just gone midnight. I still can’t sleep. I feel terrified and these are just some of the thoughts running through my mind:

  • What the f**k have I just done?
  • Have I really got enough money to do this?
  • Oh my goodness, I’m actually going to leave my job.
  • What if I’ve made the wrong decision?
  • Seriously, what the f**k have I just done?
  • I wonder what the time difference is between here and Taiwan.
  • There’s so much to do.
  • I need to find out how difficult it is to cross the Vietnam-Cambodia land border.
  • Will I ever sleep again?
  • I feel sick.

Sunday 23rd April

It’s a couple of days later now and I’ve got the end of break dread… Fellow teachers know what I mean! When you’ve had a few weeks off work, that Sunday night before arriving back in the classroom on Monday morning makes you question everything you know about who you are and your capabilities. What if I’ve forgotten how to teach? What if I sleep through my alarm? Did I definitely plan those lessons for tomorrow?

Only now that’s not why I have the dread. Tomorrow I’m going to tell my head of department and my head teacher that I’m leaving my job. A job that I’m good at and a job that I love.

Monday 24th April (am)

It’s Monday morning and I feel sick. I think I’m going to be sick. I’ve just dreamed that I had to tell my friend that I was pregnant with her boyfriends baby! Telling school can’t be that bad, right? I’m going to sacrifice the hair and make up and arrive earlier than usual to break the news.

Monday 24th April (pm)

It’s now Monday evening. What a roller coaster of emotions! I couldn’t have asked for a more supportive response from my head of department and head teacher. I also have some fantastic colleagues who are overjoyed for both Conor and myself. But with this is a twinge of sadness. In August I must leave these people behind. Some I won’t see for a few years and realistically I know that some I may never see again. I’m also panicking about the sheer quantity of things I need to organise (let’s write on the blog instead)!

Wednesday 26th April 

Wednesday evening and I’m still an emotional wreck. What a whirlwind of a week! By now, most of my colleagues know that I’m leaving and I’ve realised how much I’ll miss many of them as well as my family and friends. I’ve also just seen my job advertised on TES and I’ve shed a little tear. It’s hard to believe that something which currently consumes so much of my life will soon not be a part of it.

I’m forever reading meme’s on the internet stating ‘quit your job, buy a plane ticket and go’ but in reality it’s not quite that simple. Human beings and the world that we live in are a complex web of emotions and procedures. It’s not a decision that has been taken lightly but I’m so excited to see what the future has in store for Conor and I.

Next stop, New York!



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