Last Day at Work: Not Quite As Expected

Last Friday was our last day at work

I was looking forward to writing an inspirational post about leaving our job to pursue our dream to travel around the world.

Then I tought, “Eh…”

I’m not feeling it. Not today.

Today, as opposed to feeling free and light hearted, we just feel… overwhelmed.

Why We’re Feeling Overwhelmed

1. We still have an apartment-full of stuff to get rid of.
We’ve been slowly putting things for sale, but we seem to have underestimated how much stuff we have. We’re having a garage sale in a couple of weeks, but until then, this is what our apartment looks like:

pre-rtw messy apartment
Can you spot the cat under the couch?

2. We have pre-travel travel plans
As we’ve mentioned before, between now and then we’re going to Vegas as part of a family tradition. We’re also trying to squeeze in a week of climbing in Yosemite.

But trying to check off our growing pre-RTW checklist of things to-do among these travel plans means busy, busy, busy.

Rush, rush, rush.

3. Hello student life (and budget)! Thought we’d left you behind forever.
We have 1 month until our departure date. Until then…

Whatever we were doing before in order to save money for our trip, we have to do even more since there’s no more money coming in now.

I mean this is it. We’re so used to seeing the number in our bank getting larger and larger. To see our hard-earned savings decrease from now on will take some major adjustments.

4. Err, we don’t have to go to work tomorrow. That just feels weird..

But not everything is doom and gloom.

I like having garage sales and I’m really looking forward to it.

And Vegas? We’re not gamblers, but the prospect of going to see a Vegas show brings a flutter of excitement in our chests. Especially the prospect of an all expense paid trip to Vegas to see a Cirque du Soleil showthank you – you know who you are.

And of course, we are going to travel around the world. Duh.

A lot of stuff have happened this month: we heard the good news that allowed us to finally give notice at work, we finally told our parents and friends of our plan (find out their reactions to the news) –

And oh yeah, we just became jobless.

So I allow ourselves to feel a tad overwhelmed. For now.

Don’t get us wrong. We’re terribly excited about our our imminent departure to Colombia. It just hasn’t completely sunk it just yet — we’re too busy figuring out what to do now that we don’t have to go to work tomorrow.

Not having a job. What a weird feeling.

Related posts:
Giving notice and coming out party
South America, here we come

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46 Replies to “Last Day at Work: Not Quite As Expected”

  1. Super exciting time – but can understand your feelings of being overwhelmed! Particularly all the stuff to get rid of. I'm being transferred overseas with my job in six weeks and have to get rid of a whole apartment full of stuff too – and I really only have three weeks to do it because we're going on a three-week trip this Wednesday! Yikes! I'm feeling your pain guys.

  2. I will miss you guys. Have fun, be safe!!!!!
    In a trip like this first night or even week is difficult then you adjust. Think about it, you just "jump out of you box of comfort" !!! WOW.
    I would be very interested to read your posts about first days/weeks on the road.
    How does it feel to be "unprotected" w/out "base" to return (in a close timeframe at least). Good luck you guys!!!! I mean it.

    -Marion (if you are Jack and Jill) I am Mario 🙂

  3. I am so HAPPY for you guys. I'll be following along on your adventures RTW!! You've made a great life choice, for sure! I wish I can do the same as well…having 2 kids make it more complex, but will still aim for a family RTW in the future! Good Luck and Bon Voyage!

  4. You'll soon find that traveling full time is a job in and of itself! Congrats on the big step – good luck getting the final steps in motion.

  5. Hey

    I stumbled across your website accidentally. Today was my last day of work (after 9 years) – i'm going from the UK to Asia, hopefully for a good few months. I've only 5 weeks left to organise everthing – packing up, getting the cats sorted out – soo much to do

    I am feeling a bit strange after leaving work today, but all your posts above have helped – so just wanted to say thanks & enjoy your travels 😀


  6. I know you're overwhelmed, but this post just makes me smile because when you return from your trip you'll see things differently. Especially the part about not going to work every day… soon enough that will feel normal and then when you do go back to work, you'll wonder how you ever managed your time with a 40 hour work week.

    My advice regarding your to do list… sometimes taking the easy way out is worth it. Look at your list and think about how you can simplify things. For example, instead of going through piles of books to list individually on, maybe it makes sense just to bring them all to Goodwill and check it off the list. Save yourself the time & headache and simplify what you can.

    Think of it this way – you are now FREE! Free to spend your time the way you want to. Enjoy!

    1. Thank you, Alonna… and great advice too. That's what we're going to do with our garage sale: $2 for a whole box of stuff. The goal is to get rid of as much stuff as possible and not so much as make money off it.

      Thanks for coming by!

  7. Yeah, we're going through it right now. Selling stuff on Craigslist turns out to be harder than expected — people just keep flaking out on us.

  8. Congratulations. Don't underestimate how much time it'll take to sell all your things! On the bright side, since you don't have to go to work tomorrow you have plenty of time to list everything on Craigslist 😀

  9. Just take a deep breath – I know how you feel – we were planning a wedding the same year as we prepared for our RTW. Everything feels really overwhelming for sure. Just take baby steps and trust that it will all work out. Just chip away a little each day; that's what we did anyway =) Are you going to see 'O'???? It is by far the BEST show I've ever seen (Broadway shows and the Paris ballet included).

    1. We're going to see 'Ka' — Jack has seen it before and it blew his mind (his words). Hoping to have time to see 'O' as well.
      Thanks for the advice. Can't imagine that you were planning a wedding as well as RTW trip?? You must have crazy organizing skills.

  10. Standing on the brink of the unknown? Sounds thrilling and terrifying at the same time! I'm sure the extra time to get yourselves organised will be good, just think of it as a month-long weekend 🙂 and enjoy it! Can't wait to start seeing your journey unfold!

  11. I bet you are overwhelmed and over-excited, I'm excited too after reading your post! I know what you are going through, I've done 3 times, it's pretty exhausting, but you won't regret it 😉

  12. I always live in a state of high anxiety leading up to a big trip. It doesn't go away until my bags are checked in at the airport and I'm wondering around with my carry-on, helpless to do anything I may have forgotten and finally able to surrender into the bliss of "WE'RE GOING ON AN ADVENTURE!" Fun!

    1. Yes, I know exactly what you mean. I think the excitement/anxiety will build up as we get closer to departure… until we reach that point whn we know there's nothing we can do can we finally relax and enjoy.

  13. I'm so excited for you guys! I know this post is about the stress you're going through — but just think of the good stuff coming ahead of you! (I like concentrating on the food when I'm nervous about going to a new place and stressed about tying up messy loose ends.) Anyways, I'm hoping to start my RTW in Sept. (or possibly I'm already doing it — never sure about my "official" RTW status since I'm currently an expat who travels) so maybe I'll see you guys at some point! Good luck!

  14. Wow guys, congrats again. How very exciting. I'm sure it is overwhelming but you will trudge through it one little step at a time and things will be square before you know it.

  15. Ah yes, I remember it well. It's paralyzing…but it doesn't last forever so don't worry! Keep plugging away at the to-do lists and you'll get through it and find something else to be overwhelmed with. It's all part of the journey!! cheers!

  16. How awesome it is what you are doing. I've been in the exact situation a few (e, several) times in the past 16-odd years and although the lead-up is stressful and filled with so much work, hesitation, doubt, it has always worked out for the best with no regrets (difficulties along the way, yes, but regret no).

    Good luck with The Stuff! I think that was always the hardest part for me.

  17. I feel you! Before we left for our Europe leg in August, we went through so many of the same things; everyday was hectic. But when we finally made it to the airport, the trip became a reality and, while we were excited, the stress of the last month finally disappeared.

  18. I feel you – we were SO stressed for the month before we left. There was just too much to get done and not enough time to do it all! And It's a lot harder to get rid of stuff than most people realize. Good luck with it all!

    1. It is hard to get rid of stuff, isn't it? I keep wanting to stuff away as opposed to dealing with flay CL buyers. But it just seems so wasteful.

  19. How exciting! I remember feeling flooded with emotion, nerves, anxiety, excitement and all, wrapped up in all the planning of our RTW trip. These feelings are all part of it. Endless to-do lists, errands to run, phone calls to make…and then in an instant you'll be gone. Good luck in your last month. What doesn't get done, won't matter. You have so much ahead!

    1. Appreciate the encouragement, especially from someone who's been in a similar situation. Glad to know we're not the only one.

  20. I felt the same way. I've always lived frugally so I didn't think I had much to sell but I was amazed at how much I had accumulated.

    I didn't write a lot before I left, I found it was just too much.

    1. It's the stuff inside cabinets and cupboards, or otherwise hidden, that seem to fill up these boxes. We didn't think we have that much stuff either until we keep pulling stuff out of cupboards and were like, "What are all of these?!"

  21. Good luck clearing out all of your stuff! I remember my last day at work before our RTW, it was such a weid feeling but you will get over it quickly! Enjoy Colombia! I'm looking forward to following along!

  22. Oh my god I completely know what you mean. I had a little freak out last night as I realised how much stuff we still have to do. I'm excited about leaving work because I'm enjoying the idea of having lots of time to actually tick a few things off the list. My life is now full of to-do lists!

  23. Yep. You DEFINITELY underestimate how much stuff you have until you really start to declutter like this. And seeing the bank balance decrease once we get on the road is another feeling that will take some time getting used to.

    But the feeling of not having to go to work tomorrow – I think that's the one we're looking forward to the most! Congratulations guys, soak it all in and enjoy it! 🙂

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