It’s been five days since we moved out of DC. For me, leaving DC has felt like going through a really bad breakup, which I find kind of ironic because I came to DC six years ago to get over broken heart.

The view of DC on my last train ride home from EWI last week.

 

My relationship with DC was like one of those co-dependent hard-to-leave ones. You know, the kind of relationship you know is holding you back from the things you want to do, but you love it too much, and can’t let go.

One of my fav DC memories – The night President Obama won the election. Parties broke out in the streets, we ran to the White House in Celebration, and you could feel the excitement in the air. It was magical.

Six years ago, I spontaneously moved to DC after a good college friend suggested I move in with her. I had no job and no real life plans. I had dreams of traveling the world then, but fell head-over-heels in lust with the city. I found a job that I loved, made friends, and found a community where I belonged. Travel plans were pushed aside multiple times for jobs, co-founding a nonprofit, and dealing with those everyday life things. Before I knew it, one year turned into six.

Then, sometime last year, Eric and I started seriously talking about traveling, living and working in other countries, and doing the things we’d been talking about since we met three and a half years ago.

The Sunset shining through our 7th floor apartment in Mt. Pleasant.

We talked about it endlessly.  I always had reasons for staying:

I love my job at Empowered Women International.
I didn’t want to leave Collective Action For Safe Spaces.
I love DC too much.
We have our friends.
We started our life together in DC.

Then there were reasons for going:

This is what we’ve talked about doing forever, both together and apart.
I’ve always said I wanted to travel the world.
There’s so much to do and see. I want to see it all.
The pesky feeling reminding me there’s a whole world out there calling and waiting.

Then there was the fact that the mere thought of not traveling the world made me feel like I might die. (Yes, I’ve always been a bit of a drama queen.)

The answer was clear, it was time to go. I had to go. The choice was easy. The hard part was in the leaving.

I convinced Eric we needed to stay longer and longer. We moved dates and changed our commitments three times. While I knew I had to go, I couldn’t bring myself to leave. I’ve never been one to take change lightly and this time was no exception.

There are the small things that I miss about DC already:

Seeing the monuments each day as I come home from work.
The sunsets from our apartment.
Our apartment. I really loved our apartment.
The streets of DC.
All the places we loved to go.
Runs to the White House.

caption= “Just a few of the amazing women I get to work with at EWI!

Then there are the big things I will miss:

Going into EWI every day.
How Marga and I used to yell at one another through the office walls instead of getting up from our desks.
Being in DC when CASS finally launches RightRides DC.
All the in-person CASS meetings.
My friends – this one is the hardest of them of all.

As emotional as I am right now, as difficult as this breakup has been, I have never been happier or more excited. As I look out into the horizon at what is to come…

Endless travel with my life partner.
The ability to be location independent. ( I even get to keep working for EWI!)
New experiences.
Gorgeous sandy beaches and clear ocean water.
Turning our dreams into a reality.

…I know I made the right choice.

There’s no looking back now. I’m ready for the world.

 

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