tomorrow, i will come to work for the last time for a while. after four years with this parks and rec department, i am quitting my job. i am rearranging the priorities of work, play, self growth, and relationships in my life.
work and saving money has been the main priority of my life for the past five years. i have managed to pay off student loan debt, and then save what feels like a comfortable amount of money. i am not ready for full on early retirement, but i do feel that i've reached a degree of financial independence. i put in long hours to be promoted to higher paying salaries. in combination with a lifestyle of frugality, self provisioning, and minimalism, this enabled me to save 60% of my salary for the last three years.
i spent the last two months trying to decide what to do with myself post-work. i threw around a lot of ideas – long-distance hike, going back to school, apprenticing at a farm… in the end, i realized that the priorities in my heart are spending time with the ones i love, living a life closer to nature, and moving towards a work life that is fulfilling, sustainable, and on my terms.
to that end, i am going to be spending a lot of time over the next two months traveling, camping, backpacking, and adventuring with siblings and old friends. i am seeing folks i haven't in years, because work was always in the way.
we are also getting ready to relocate. i have felt called to the mountains for years, a decade now even, and next spring i plan to go. moving north into the mountains will bring me closer to my family too.
it doesn't feel real that i won't have to report to work anymore. i don't really feel overjoyed. i am sad to be leaving work friends and the meaningful projects i have built. at the same time, i know i'm not going to miss the waking up early, the hours and hours at a desk, and the stresses of being an introvert managing large groups of people and staff.
here's to closing this chapter.