I have 1 week left in Seattle, 2 weeks in Long Beach then I’m off to Delhi. These last few months have been a whirlwind of planning, buying supplies, organizing fundraisers, writing letters while still living my normal daily life of work, buying groceries, working out and hanging out with friends. I’ve been so busy that I haven’t really started to process what this leaving actually looks like, that I actually have to say goodbye to people. As I was packing up my house last weekend and as I spent time with family and friends this holiday weekend, I actually started to feel sad. I knew it would come sooner or later and now it is upon me.

I’ve never been very good with change. For a good portion of my life, I avoided it as much as I could or didn’t think about it until the last possible minute. The older I get and the more changes I go through, I acknowledge that that wasn’t the best approach. Being slammed with overwhelming sadness and emotion was awful! I think putting off dealing with change actually made it harder. It didn’t stop things from changing. Putting off dealing with the changes emotionally just made me an unfeeling zombie for the few weeks or months before the change and then an angry emotional wreck the minute things actually did change. These last few months I’ve been trying to be more intentional about thinking and processing the changes that are about to come. I have wanted to enjoy these last few months, to enjoy the anticipation of the trip, the preparation. This last month or so, I’ve been slowing processing the changes in my mind, but not really talking about it. I think it’s time to talk about it. The talking makes it real and what I need right now is for it to be real.

Change was pretty real as I walked out of my place for the last time (for a while anyway) last Sunday morning. I know it’s in good hands, but it’s still hard to just let it go. I had to take a deep breath as I walked out and remember that things can be replaced. I shouldn’t hold on so tight to them. And as I anticipate saying goodbye to my people, I realize that they are what I should be holding tight.

I’m feeling excited and so joyful to be going on this trip. The planning, the amount of support I’ve received, the places I’m going…I can’t wait! But at the same time I’m sad to be leaving my work friends, my workout partner, my Wednesday night Chocolati date, my volleyball people, my walking partner/thai food loving friend, my pregnant cousins and many more. It will be hard not to be able to call anyone in my family any time I want or to not be able to FaceTime my nephew every week.

As I anticipate leaving Seattle next weekend and Long Beach in 3 weeks, I guess the thing that I’m trying to accept is this dichotomy of sadness and excitement. This mourning of leaving people precious to me and the looking forward to meeting new people. I guess I’ve always believed that you can only really feel one thing at a time. You can’t be both happy and sad in the exact same moment. But I’ve been fooling myself. If I’m honest, I feel so many different things at the exact same moment all the time. And that is OK. That is life.